Disclaimer: All characters, settings, etc belong to the wonderful JK Rowling, and all the grasping corporations that have sunk their hooks in the wonderful world of Harry Potter. Plot is stupid, almost non-existent, but still mine. Not for the weak stomached, or those who are fluff-intolerant.
A/N: Trying to work on Chapter 12 of Weasel and Kneazle, but I'm stuck! I hope this will satisfy temporarily, but probably not. Also, the title is shameless borrowed from C. S. Lewis's tale 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' but as with 'The Colour of her Knickers' that is as far as the similarities go.
Draco Malfoy patrolled the hallways with a sour look on his thin, pinched face. He'd thought that when he became a prefect he would be above menial errands, that he would be able to reap the rewards of the position without having to stoop to performing such tasks as patrolling the hallways, running errands for the professors and monitoring student behavior. What he'd imagined was being able to 'lord it' over the other students without consequences. He hadn't counted on the Head Girl personally going over the performance of the prefects and countering their actions if she deemed it necessary.
Draco scowled as he remembered the first time the Granger girl had questioned him about some points he'd taken from a couple of Gryffindor first year students. She'd wanted to know why he'd taken the points. When he'd replied that he had 'felt like it', she'd rolled her eyes at him and reinstated the points. And his own head of house had agreed with her! He seethed with resentment, but he guessed it just proved that Blood meant very little anymore.
Since Voldemort's defeat at the end of his sixth year, Draco had noticed a decided change in the way people treated him now. Gone were the good old days when the kids scattered at his approach. Gone was the time when he could bully them around with impunity. Crabbe had gone soft and was going out with some pie-faced little cow in Hufflepuff and Goyle was now spending most of his time in the Care of Magical Creatures barns with that oaf Hagrid. It didn't help that Professor Snape had called him into his office only a few weeks ago, advising him that if he wanted to take points, he had to come up with at least a feeble excuse. And, by the bye, why didn't Draco grow up? Grow up!? It was too much! Draco would have complained to his father, but that would do little good now. The man lived in constant fear that the bastards at the Ministry would be round to haul him back to prison any day now.
Climbing the stairs toward the Astronomy towers, Draco's expression grew even grimmer. He'd told his father two years ago that he thought backing the dark lord was not very smart. He'd earned a very unusual slap in the face for that one, but he'd pressed it, pointing out that if Voldemort had been thwarted again and again by an upstart, nearly half-blood, Muggle-loving prat like Potter, who wasn't even out of school yet and didn't have the brains or stones to really study the dark arts, why would his father support the self styled Dark Lord? Voldemort was destined to lose, in Draco's opinion, so last year's defeat was really no surprise. The only real surprise had been Snape gathering a select group of students (Draco included) and leading them in the defense of the castle while Harry-effing-hero-Potter and his pals did whatever it is they had done to defeat He-Who-Had-His-Head-Up-His-Arse. Trust Potter to be the big hero yet again! Draco was so sick Potter and his pals getting all the credit when he couldn't have done what he'd done without a lot of other students and teachers getting hurt watching his back. It was disgusting. At this point Draco was glad there were only a few months of school left. His life stunk right now, and he couldn't wait to get out of this school, and this country for that matter, and forget Hogwarts and the dream team ever existed.
As Draco was about to embark on another round of self-pity he heard a commotion coming from behind the door to one of the towers. He approached the door, a sneering smile on his face. There were no classes up here tonight, so it had to be students. And this time when he caught them and took points, Granger wouldn't be able to do anything about it. The door was slightly ajar, and Draco could now actually make out voices.
"Spin!" one girl said in an excited whisper.
"Abbot! Right then, you and Creevey are next!"
There was a burst of laughter and excited squeals from the girls, and despite himself, Draco was curious about what was going on. He'd peek first and then take points, he decided. Pushing the door open just a bit more, Draco saw a small circle of students sitting or kneeling on the floor. There was an empty bottle in the middle of the circle lying on its side. As he watched, there was a brief discussion before a tiny blonde girl who looked enough like that Hufflepuff Hannah Abbot to be her kid sister, leaned across the circle toward a thin boy. Then, as Draco finally caught on to what they were doing the boy and girl kissed. More laughter and giggling followed and the boy, Colin Creevey, one of Gryffindor's chasers, reached out and spun the bottle.
Good grief, Draco thought with a smirk. When he used to sneak out after hours, he never played adolescent games like this. These kids were just pathetic. His smirk turned into a smile as he thought how much he was going to enjoy this. Pushing quietly into the room (and no one seemed to notice him, anyway) he approached the players.
The bottle had come to a stop with the neck pointing at a tall, generously built redheaded girl.
"Okay, Gin, your turn," the Creevey boy said. "Spin!"
Draco's breath caught as he noticed Ginny Weasley for the first time. He used to be able to pick on this one mercilessly, until she'd gone and grown into a very pretty girl. She wasn't skinny and scrawny any more. Instead, she was tall and fully curved, and (he was told) had a great personality, to boot. She had somehow acquired a backbone, as well, and easily brushed off his attempts to bully her. When she looked at him these days, it was always with a resigned look, as though she were trying to figure out what he wanted this time. As he watched, she pushed a silky lock of her bright red hair away from her face and reached for the bottle. Giving it a good spin, she watched as it went round and round, finally coming to a stop. Everyone looked at the empty space it was pointing at, with Creevey saying, "Guess you'll have to spin again."
Even as she was reaching for the bottle, a pair of highly polished black shoes came into view in the ring of light surrounding the circle. All eyes traveled from the shoes to the neat robes up to the thin, pinched features of the Slytherin prefect.
Draco smirked again as he saw the looks of fear on the faces of the assembled students. "Guess your little game is over, isn't it, Weasley?" he taunted, rightly picking the Weasley girl out as one of the ringleaders. Naturally she would be, he thought a bit resentfully. She was the sister of one of the 'dream team', wasn't she? Well, he'd show her that regardless of how pretty she was, she couldn't get away with anything on his watch. He was so going to enjoy this.
"Actually, Malfoy, it's your turn," the redhead said calmly. "Colin? What will it be?"
As several of the other students gasped in surprise, Draco almost pinched himself to make sure he was really there. What was wrong with these two? Didn't Weasley and Creevey see his prefect's badge? Weren't they worried about getting caught? As he looked over them, he saw that the others, Creevey included, were indeed afraid. It was that Weasley girl; she was keeping them together. She was going to try to brazen her way out of this. Before he could speak, Creevey squeaked out, "Right, then. The cupboard, five minutes. Right?"
"Right," Weasley said, standing. "Come on, then, Malfoy. We're stuck in the cupboard for five minutes."
She turned away from him and walked to a small door set into the wall under the spiraling stone stairway leading up to the observation tower. Opening the door, she turned and beckoned to him again.
"What the hell? Are you out of your mind, Weasley?" Draco demanded, all at once feeling foolish. If these kids thought they were going to get on his good side by trying to include him in their stupid, childish games, they were in for a surprise.
The girl gave him a pleasant smile, and Draco was a little taken aback at how attractive she really was. It was little wonder this lot looked to her as a leader. She was cool-headed, easy on the eyes, and had a lot of nerve.
"You're not afraid of being locked in a cupboard with me, are you, Malfoy? I promise I won't bite."
That earned a glare from Draco and a tittering laugh from one of the girls. The boys were smart enough not to make a sound.
"I'm not afraid of you or anyone at this school, Weasley. And I'm not—,"
"Prove it, then," she said, cutting him off. "Cupboard, five minutes. Don't worry, Malfoy, there'll be plenty of time to take off house points after."
Draco scowled at her, knowing she had him at his weakest point: his pride. He gave the assembled students a seething look and said, "Don't even try to leave. I know who you all are!"
Then he stalked across the room and glowered at Weasley. "Five minutes, Weasley, and its just to show you that I'm on to your tricks. If your 'friends' disappear, you'll be the one to suffer!"
The Weasley girl nodded and entered the cupboard. Giving the other kids a final sneer, Draco followed her. The door closed and they were surrounded by blackness. Draco heard the sound of the lock being engaged and heard Creevey call out, "Right! The door will open after ten minutes. Have fun, Gin!"
More laughter followed, but it was muffled. What a fool! Draco thought. How could he have let himself be manipulated into this? He was certain the others would just disappear, leaving Weasley to take the heat herself. He would have done, and so would everyone he knew. And despite his words, the only kids he really could place were Creevey and Weasley and perhaps Hannah Abbot's little sister. Reaching into his pocket, Draco pulled out his wand. He was not going to stay here and be laughed at. He was going to open the door and do what he should have done immediately; take names!
As he lifted the wand, Weasley spoke.
"So, now what, Malfoy?"
Draco paused. "What do you mean, now what?
"Well, you're stuck in here with me for ten minutes. So now what? I mean, I know you're not going to try to cheat and use your wand to get out, right? People might think you're scared of the dark…or me."
Gritting his teeth, Draco put the wand away. Then he said, "Ten minutes? I thought you said five!"
"I did, but apparently Colin misunderstood. Didn't you hear him? He set the door-locking spell for ten. So what do you want to do for the next, um, nine minutes?"
"Don't ask me, Weasley," Draco said angrily. "It's your stupid game, not mine."
Weasley didn't answer and Draco began to feel a bit uncomfortable. He couldn't see a thing, but he didn't have to. He was locked in a cupboard with one of the prettiest girls in the school. Most guys would have been thrilled. Hell, he would have been thrilled if the girl in question wasn't named Weasley. Draco didn't have any illusions about the situation, though. Knowing the Weasleys, this one was probably sacrificing herself so her pals could make a clean getaway.
He couldn't imagine that Weasley was very happy about getting locked away with him, either. For one thing, he was usually rather unpleasant to her when he spoke to her. For another, he didn't delude himself that girls found him overly attractive. He was well enough, he knew, but girls like Weasley wanted boys with looks like St. Potter. And he'd just threatened her. Not the way to win friends and influence pretty girls. And I don't give a damn, either, he thought fiercely. I didn't come in here to snog Weasley.
"Why did you come in here?" Weasley asked suddenly, and Draco was afraid he'd actually spoken his thoughts out loud.
"What do you mean?"
He heard her click her tongue and then heard the rustle of her robes as she moved. "I mean, obviously you weren't overjoyed with the thought of being locked up with me, so why did you let me bully you into this? It's not like you're interested in me, right? And where the hell are you, Malfoy? I hate talking into the blank dark! Hold out your hands so I can at least tell where you are!"
Draco blinked at her irritated tone. But he held out his hands and felt her brush against them. He pulled away immediately, not knowing what portion of her anatomy he'd just inadvertently groped, but embarrassed all the same.
"Right, then, just stay there," she said quickly.
Draco froze when he felt a hand touch the center of his chest. The hand moved lightly over the silky material of his robe, sending a shock of sensation coursing through his body. Don't be an idiot, he told himself. She was merely trying to figure out where he was, she wasn't trying to turn him on. Her hand strayed across his chest until it came to the prefect badge.
"Okay, you're facing me now," she said matter of factly. He wished she would remove her hand, but she didn't.
Swallowing, Draco said, "Are you through feeling me up, Weasley? I'd appreciate it if you'd take your hand off me."
The hand was gone instantly. "I wasn't 'feeling you up', Malfoy!" she snapped. "No wonder you don't have a girlfriend if you're always so…"
"So what?" Draco demanded. "My girlfriends are none of your business, Weasley!"
He gritted his teeth as he heard her laugh softly. "Your girlfriends are non-existent, Malfoy. I can't imagine anyone who would put up with your filthy temper and your touchiness and your overbearing attitude. Not to mention all that misplaced pride!"
"Why, you little harpy!" Draco began. "Who do you--,"
"You know, Malfoy," she interrupted. "Being dead sexy will only get you so far. You really need to get a personality."
He could feel his mouth hanging open and he closed it abruptly. Was she having him on? She had to be! Had she just called him 'dead sexy'? Shaking his head, he turned away from where he suspected she was still standing. He had a mirror and the one person he was almost always honest with was himself. He was not the type to make girls look twice at him. He knew this. The Weasley girl was just taunting him, no doubt getting back for all the insults he'd ever given her. And Draco didn't like it at all. But since he couldn't think of a decent insult or comeback, he remained silent. If he didn't speak, he wouldn't give her an opportunity to dig at him again, he reasoned. He would never in a thousand years admit that he was actually tongue tied in the presence of this popular, lovely young woman.
The dark seemed to get thicker as the silence stretched into what felt like hours. Draco heard the rustle of her robes as she moved restlessly about, but he remained where he was. He nearly jumped out of his skin when he felt her hand on his shoulder.
"Sorry!" she said quickly.
"God, Weasley, are you trying to give me a heart attack?" he yelled, turning toward her again and glaring, even though she couldn't see it. His voice shook slightly and his heart was racing almost painfully, but he barely noticed.
"I said I was sorry! You don't have to take my head off! I just wanted to apologize. You do have a personality, even if it's rather unpleasant. I—I'm sorry. I didn't have any right to say that."
Draco found himself shaking his head. He'd insulted her and her brother for years without once feeling badly. She had insulted him one time, and she seemed to feel guilty for it. She was a real piece of work. And she still had her hand on his shoulder. Only now it was on the front of his shoulder, and it seemed to be moving, sliding over his robe and coming to rest over where his heart was still pounding from the fright she'd given him.
Maybe it's pounding because she's standing so close and still touching you, a little voice whispered in his brain. No way, he answered. Just because she was pretty, didn't mean he was attracted to her. She was a Weasley, for God's sake! And a Gryffindor. And she smells damn good, doesn't she? the voice asked slyly. Not interested, he told himself firmly. Then she placed her other hand on his chest.
"Weasley," he managed in a slightly strangled voice. "What are you doing?"
After a few seconds she answered. "I—I think I'm going to kiss you, Malfoy."
"What?" He would have bellowed it, but he suddenly seemed to be having difficulty breathing.
"If you don't mind, that is," she answered. Draco wished he could see her face, because she sounded so damned shy and unsure. Why would she be, he wondered? Every boy in the school would kill to be standing here with Ginny Weasley breathily telling him she wanted to kiss him. So why would she be asking if he minded? And why wasn't he just sitting back and enjoying?
"Why?" he finally asked. She couldn't possibly really want to do this. Then understanding dawned. "Oh," he sneered. "I get it. You think if you kiss me, you won't get in trouble. You think I'm a fool, Weasley?"
She pulled her hands away and he could hear her move back. "No, Malfoy, I think you're a great bastard," she said in a small, quivering voice. "Naturally you'd think something like that. Of course it's not possible that I really wanted to kiss you, that I have for months, is it? In your world no one does something for nothing. I was stupid for getting us locked in here in the first place. What an idiot! Damn! Hasn't it been ten minutes yet?"
Draco bit his lip. His heart was still pounding. His brain was screaming that he had royally screwed up, but how could he have acted any differently? Ginny Weasley was beyond his experience and he had no idea where the girl was coming from. Suddenly the thought of getting kids in trouble and taking house points seemed a bit pointless beside the fact that Weasley was going to drive him barking mad if he didn't get out of this cupboard soon. Draco pulled out his wand and moved toward where he thought the door was. Instead, he ploughed right into Weasley, nearly knocking her to the ground.
She yelped and would have fallen if he hadn't grabbed at her arms. She clutched at the material of his sleeves, trying to regain her balance.
"Not satisfied with insulting me, Malfoy? Now you have to maul me a bit, too?"
"Look, I was just trying to find the door. I didn't mean to knock you over."
"Oh, well, then I guess you'll be taking your wand out of my armpit any time now, right?"
Draco snatched his wand hand back, dropping the wand in the process. It clattered to the floor, but he barely noticed.
"Er, sorry, Weasley. I didn't mean to…" His voice trailed away. This situation just kept getting worse and worse.
"Look, Malfoy, just forget it. And, since I don't want to be accused of trying to seduce you for personal gain again, you can let go of my other arm."
"Actually, Weasley, I can't," he said thickly. "I've been telling my hand to let go but it's not listening."
Draco wasn't lying. He'd been telling himself to let her go these last several moments. His hand just refused to move. Except that that wasn't exactly true, either. His hand was moving; up her arm to her shoulder, to gently cup the nape of her neck.
"So, what are you saying, Malfoy?" she demanded, her voice quivering. "That you suddenly find me irresistible? That's a good one." She tried to move away, but he was still holding her, gently but firmly. "No doubt you'll be disinfecting yourself to get the Weasley taint off your precious pure-blood hands as soon as we're out of here."
Draco cringed mentally at the words. He knew she was repeating what he had said many times in the past. But he answered with unusual honesty.
"Weasley, I'm sure you know most of the males at this school find you irresistible. Why should I be different? When we do get out of here, I won't be 'disinfecting'. I'll be kicking myself in the ass for being such an idiot and not keeping my big mouth closed."
Draco was surprised when she stopped trying to pull away and actually moved a step closer. He was shocked at her reply.
"Really?" she said, the indecision back in her voice. "And do you always kiss with your mouth closed?"
"I—uh, never really noticed," he managed to stammer.
Weasley moved even closer and Draco's knees felt weak when she placed her hands tentatively on his chest, running them up the soft material of his robe to his shoulders. Her voice seemed to be only an inch away when she breathed, "You'll have to take notes, then, won't you?"
He felt her lips brush his chin and heard her giggle. "Oops, I missed," she whispered. One of her hands slid up to the side of his face and he couldn't help leaning into it. "Now hold still," she instructed quietly.
Oh, God, he thought as the soft lips touched his own thin ones. She pressed her lips gently against his and her hand moved to his shoulder again. She tightened her grip and Draco didn't move, barely dared to breathe. He was afraid she might come to her senses and push him away. He still had no idea why Ginny Weasley could possibly want to kiss him, but he wasn't about to complain now.
Her lips pressed more firmly, and Draco thought he might just pass out when she touched his lips lightly with the tip of her tongue. Pleasure coursed through his body and he hoped the damn door never opened. He finally moved, pulling her closer and wrapping an arm around her waist. I knew I shouldn't have moved, he thought when she started to pull away. Biting back his disappointment, Draco steeled himself for her reaction.
She didn't move far, though. "Will you—open your mouth for me?"
His poor, abused heart now galloped along at triple time. Oh, lord, she wants me to open my mouth for her, he thought in disbelief. She was actually asking him to do so. And she sounded so unsure, Draco almost laughed. How on earth a girl who looked like her could be so timid with a boy was a mystery to him. Hell, he would probably stand on his head for another of her soft kisses. He pulled her face up to his, still wishing he could see her expression. Their lips touched and Draco opened his mouth slightly. She gave a small sigh as their lips touched. Feeling a bit bolder, Draco very gently, very lightly stroked her soft, warm lips with his tongue. Her reaction nearly made his knees buckle. Oh, my lord, he thought. She's purring!
That was the only way to describe the soft humming sound coming from her throat as she pressed her mouth to his. He couldn't seem to control himself and he gathered her tightly into his arms. Her soft curves were definitely designed to send a boy mad, and when she deepened the kiss, Draco was afraid the pleasure might just cause him to explode.
Neither teen noticed the sound of the door lock opening. In fact, Draco couldn't seem to concentrate on anything but the pretty redhead in his arms. Finally, however, he had to break away. He needed to take a deep breath and he felt a bit lightheaded. He didn't release her, though. Instead, he kept his arms wrapped protectively around her and pulled her head against his chest. Draco was trying to figure out what had just happened, but everything was whirling around him. He'd kissed Ginny Weasley. Not just kissed her, but snogged the hell out of her! At least, that's what it felt like to him.
Just then she sighed. Draco's cheeks flamed. He wasn't really a lady's man, and his experience was quite limited, though he'd never admit it to anyone else. So he couldn't help wonder if the pleasure he'd experienced had been one-sided. Good lord, his knees were still weak and it was a wonder he hadn't just collapsed to the floor, dragging Weasley with him. But what if she hadn't liked it, after all? Draco didn't know if he could bear it if she pushed him away or laughed at him. He decided that he'd better be the one doing the pushing, before she had a chance. Straightening, he gripped her shoulders.
"Could I kiss you once more?" she asked, her voice almost wistful. "I mean, as soon as we go back out, you'll be Mr. Slytherin prefect and all business again, right?"
"Are you serious?" he couldn't help asking. "You want to kiss me again?"
He felt her hand awkwardly touch his face. Then she brushed his cheek gently. "I—it's just, we're safe in here, you know? It's like the rules are suspended. I'm Gryffindor, you're Slytherin. Once we go out, we're enemies again. I just wanted--,"
Her voice trailed off, but Draco seemed to understand her perfectly. Even if there had been more than physical attraction, there was no way he could openly see her. Not only would her brother and his friends raise the roof, but his own friends and acquaintances would make life more miserable for him than it already was. As it was, she'd probably get plenty of hell from her friends about getting locked up with him in the first place. And he now remembered hearing the door unlock. If her friends were still out there (which he doubted) wouldn't they be wondering what the hell Weasley was up to with the 'evil' Slytherin prefect? He was about to tell her that they'd better just leave, but her lips touched his chin again.
She giggled once more. "My aim is horrid, isn't it? And you need to shave, Malfoy. Who'd have thought Draco Malfoy had a five o'clock shadow?"
He nearly grinned, but stopped her before she could correct her aim. "Say it again," he murmured, almost shyly.
"What? That you need a shave?" Her hand brushed upward along his jaw. "Badly, too. A girl could cut herself."
He bit back another groan at her soft touch. "My name," he corrected. "Not 'Malfoy', but my first name. Say it?"
She was silent for a few seconds and Draco wondered what it was that she'd heard in his voice. He'd always despised his name and had resented that his parents had given him such a stupid one. But when she said it, it sounded perfectly natural.
"Draco? Like that?" she asked quietly. "Or more like this…" It felt like she stood on her toes. Then Draco felt her breath next to his ear. "Kiss me again, Draco," she whispered.
That was all the encouragement he needed. He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her close. His lips found hers and this time he didn't hesitate. He might not be all that experienced, but his instincts seemed to be dead-on. Soon Ginny was making that purring sound again, and he was growing light-headed once more. He wasn't certain how much longer he could have stayed there, wrapped around Ginny Weasley like a boa constrictor, but he didn't get a chance to find out. A loud and not so discreet cough interrupted them.
"Uh, Gin?" It was Creevey's voice, and it was coming from the now slightly ajar door.
Draco broke away instantly, once again feeling foolish. What would everyone say or think when they found out that he'd not only been duped into getting involved in an adolescent game of 'spin the bottle', but he'd allowed himself to get locked into a cupboard with a sixth year Gryffindor? And if that weren't enough, he'd been caught snogging the enemy, so to speak! Unthinkable pleasure aside, he'd never live it down! Grasping Weasley by her shoulders, Draco pushed her away a bit more roughly than he'd intended.
"About damned time, Creevey," Draco growled, turning toward the faint outline of the door.
The girl gasped at his abrupt treatment, and Draco felt a tug of—something that he couldn't quite name. It wasn't guilt, but at the same time, it was an altogether unpleasant feeling that he'd just been a real bastard toward her yet again. He reached out to push the door open, but she brushed past him and was out ahead of him. With an oath, he followed her. Then he came to a screeching halt. Every one of the students who had been in on the game was still sitting patiently in the circle, waiting.
Draco frowned, not really knowing what to do. He'd fully expected them all, except perhaps Creevey, to run off while they had the chance. He had never expected them to stand by the girl's side like this. He glanced at the girl in question, but she was staring straight ahead, arms crossed and an injured expression on her face. What the hell am I supposed to do now, he asked himself, no longer having any desire to take their stupid names and get them in trouble for their stupid little games.
Giving them all a harsh glare, he muttered, "Get lost!"
Several of the kids looked surprised, and a few looked to Ginny as if for direction. That irritated Draco. He was positively glowering as he repeated, "Get lost!"
They jumped, and nearly stampeded as he added, "Now!"
And then the little room at the bottom of the stairs below the Astronomy tower was empty, deserted save for Draco and a butterbeer bottle. Draco looked around a bit dejectedly. How right he'd been when he'd told the Weasley girl he'd be kicking himself in the ass for being such an idiot. She had been the last one to leave, and she'd given him a quick accusing look. He didn't really blame her. She'd offered him her affection, even if they both knew it was only temporary. He'd taken what she'd offered and then basically had thrown it back in her face at the first opportunity.
Sighing, Draco picked up the bottle and headed for the door. As he opened it, he was surprised to see most of the kids standing there, looking undecided. They jumped a bit when they saw him, but none of them moved. Draco frowned at them.
"What are you still doing here?" he demanded. "Are you stupid? Do you want to get in trouble?"
"We were deciding who was going to retrieve our bottle," Ginny Weasley said calmly, stepping forward. "They're not that easy to come by and the next Hogsmeade visit isn't for weeks."
Draco's frown deepened. "So what you're saying is that even though you basically had a 'get off, Scot free' card, you're going to be playing your silly games again, and maybe get caught again?"
The Weasley girl stopped in front of him. "Yeah, that's pretty much what I'm saying. Now if you don't mind, Malfoy, the bottle is mine."
She held her hand out for it, and Draco very nearly just handed it over. He paused, however, as a sudden thought struck him. "You lot, get lost unless you have a death wish, understand?" he growled at the assembled kids staring at the Weasley girl and him. They looked undecided until Weasley nodded at them to go. When they were out of sight and earshot, Draco looked back at the girl standing in front of him. "Do this often, do you, Weasley?" he asked, his voice hard.
"Do what? Play the game? Get locked in a cupboard with an arrogant, insufferable git?"
Draco's eyes narrowed. "Yeah, that. And snog the hell out of some poor, unsuspecting bastard. No wonder the boys, at least, were so willing to stay and get in trouble for you."
Her face went bright red as her eyes opened wide. "Why, you filthy minded, vile, smirking, superior pig!" she gasped. "I've never done that before!"
Draco watched as her hands clenched and unclenched, as though she were just itching to scratch his eyes out. He really should run, he thought, but he stepped even closer. "Then why did you do it tonight?" he demanded. "Why me when everyone knows how you and your family feel about me?"
"That's none of your business, Malfoy," she snapped, turning away from him. "Keep the damned bottle! You can look at it and laugh at how you made such a fool of me!"
Draco couldn't help but admire the way she stalked away, head high, shapely hips swaying, bright hair bouncing on her shoulders. He also couldn't help following after her, grabbing her and pulling her around to look at him. "I'm the fool, Weasley, or haven't you figured that out? Everyone knows I love to write Gryffindors up. But I spent ten minutes in a cupboard with you, and suddenly I let a whole pack of them go. So who's the fool here?"
She glared at him. "Just because you were too lazy to do it, don't make it sound like I had anything to do with it. If you'd given a damn about what I felt, you wouldn't have shoved me away like some disgusting bug you'd just found crawling on you. So, either write me up, or get lost yourself, Malfoy. I'm tired of arguing with you."
"First tell me why, Weasley! Why me?"
Her jaw was tight and the lovely face was contorted in a furious scowl, but Draco found himself drawn to her anyway. He reached out to touch her cheek but she flinched back and whirled around, once again stalking down the hall. She stopped when Draco called out, "What's the bottle worth to you, Weasley?"
She turned slowly, her eyes narrow. She took a step toward him, her body moving sinuously, dangerously, like some predatory creature stalking its prey. Draco swallowed. The girl looked dangerous at the moment.
"What do you mean, Malfoy?" she demanded in a low voice. Another step.
Draco felt an urge to back away from the menacing look in the girl's eyes, but he nervously held his ground. Lord, she wasn't just pretty right now, she was beautiful.
"Well? What do you mean?" she asked again, now much closer.
Draco held the bottle up and said, "What are you willing to give me for this bottle?" Even to himself, his voice sounded shaky. He just hoped she hadn't noticed.
Now she stopped, straightening. Her eyes grew wide, then narrow again. "Not a damned thing, Malfoy," she said in a harsh voice. "I asked for it and typical for a great prat like you, you wouldn't give it back. Like I said before, just keep it!"
Before she could turn, Draco reached out, grabbing her shoulders and shocking himself. He didn't give her a chance to react, just pulled her closer. It was awkward with the bottle, but his hands were large and her arms slender. Looking directly into her eyes, he said, "Would you give me another kiss for it?"
"So you can just push me away again?" she asked, incredulously. Draco noticed that she was also suddenly breathless. "No, thanks. I'll just wait until we can get another. Now let me go!"
He continued to hold her arms firmly, in spite of her struggling, unable to release her. Just let go, his brain told him, before you humiliate yourself even more! His body didn't seem to be listening, though. Instead, his brain watched, horrified, as he said, "Is there anything I can do for one more kiss?"
The redhead stopped trying to tug her arms free. She looked sharply at him as though she couldn't believe what he'd just asked. "You're not serious?"
"I warned you earlier. I'd be kicking myself for being such an ass. Well, if I could reach, I would be kicking myself." Draco couldn't believe he'd just admitted what he'd just admitted. He must really be insane, but he hadn't been able to control his words. Giving her a last desperate look, Draco finally released her arms. She still looked angry and disbelieving, and he didn't blame her. Letting out the breath he hadn't been aware of holding, Draco stepped back.
"Look, Weasley," he began nervously, "just take the damned bottle and go."
He held the bottle out and she reached slowly for it, darting her eyes from the bottle to his face, as though expecting some trick. He stood without moving, not really blaming her for her caution. When she finally closed her fingers around the neck of the bottle, Draco released it.
"Now just go before someone else catches you up here," he said.
She was looking at the bottle she held carefully in both hands, but she didn't seem in any hurry to leave. Still looking down, she said, "You know you're the only prefect who comes up here. The others know you do this area, so they stay away."
"How did you know that?" he blurted out.
Now she looked up at him and Draco caught his breath. The lovely brown eyes weren't glaring at him anymore. Now they were soft and welcoming. She had a small smile on her face, but if he'd had to describe it, he would have called it 'seductive' rather than happy. In fact, her whole bearing seemed to change, becoming subtly sultry and inviting. She raised her eyebrows slightly and moved toward him.
"I made it my business to know when you'd be out and about. Does that surprise you?"
"It surprises the hell out of me," he answered candidly, trying not to gulp. "If you knew I'd be up here, why didn't you lot just leave before I got here?"
She bent suddenly, placing the bottle carefully on the ground. When she stood straight again, she reached out and put one hand on his chest, as she had earlier. Now he did gulp, his throat making a dry clicking sound. She only smiled more broadly when he stepped back, running into the wall. He had nowhere to go and the Weasley girl seemed to sense it.
"Don't you think it would have defeated my purpose to have left?"
"What was your purpose?" Draco couldn't stop the trembling in his limbs and was afraid he might just leap on Weasley and drag her to the floor, kissing her senseless.
Her other hand came up and both of them slid up his chest to wrap around his neck. "Why, to get you alone and at my mercy, of course. You haven't figured that out yet?"
Draco's heart was now pounding so hard, he was certain she must hear it. He couldn't think past the sudden desire to wrap himself around her as he had in the cupboard and coax more of those purring sounds from her. He didn't even know if he could, but he wanted like hell to try. Even as his arms came up, she shook her head.
"Oh, no, Malfoy. The rules have changed," she said, leaning fully into his body and making him want to groan. In a teasing voice, she added, "No touching. I can touch any way I want, but you have to just stand there and take it, right?"
His eyes rolled back and his knees were so weak he thought he might just collapse. But one thought reasserted itself. He looked at her, seeing the vixenish mischief in her eyes. "Only if you tell me why? You could have any fellow in school, and you know it. Why me?"
Her expression became serious as she said, "I think you're exaggerating, don't you? Besides, I didn't want 'any fellow'. I wanted you. Did I remember to mention just how sexy you are in your Quidditch kit? And how I'm looking forward to playing Slytherin so I get to watch you up close? Do you think you'll feel it necessary to slam into me the way you do the other seekers? I have to admit, it gives me tingles to think about it. So, now you know. I'm hopelessly lusting after the mean, evil Slytherin seeker. Satisfied?"
Draco's eyes had been getting wider and wider. He was practically goggling at her as she finished. "You're absolutely certifiable, you know that, don't you?"
"That's what Colin said when I told him what I was up to," she admitted with a shrug. "So, do you agree to the rules?"
Closing his eyes, Draco lifted his arms above his head. "You'd better tie me, then, Weasley, because I can't promise not to touch."
He felt her warm breath across his throat as she giggled. "I'll trust you, Malfoy, just this once."
Her body pressed close again, and as she lifted onto her toes, Draco did groan. Then her mouth brushed his lightly before he said, "Do I get to kiss back?"
"I should think so," she replied. "In fact, I should hope so!"
"Thank the gods," was his whispered response as she again brushed his lips.
Draco opened for her immediately, bending his head down to press more closely against her mouth. Her tongue darted forward and flicked at his own tongue before retreating. She did this again and again until he finally thrust his tongue into her mouth. She let out a tiny gasp and tightened her arms. Trying desperately to keep his hands to himself, Draco pressed his body against hers, wanting to crush those soft, generous curves to him. He was absolutely lost when she began purring again. Breaking the kiss, he wrapped his arms around her and swept her around until she was the one against the wall. She made a small sound of protest but his hands were already planted on either side of her shoulders and he was murmuring apologies while covering her cheek and jaw with tiny kisses.
"Sorry, sorry, no touching. I know! I won't do it again!"
He didn't need to, now. He took he lips again even while his body pressed hers firmly against the wall. It wasn't experience, but instinct that made him begin to move his body rhythmically against hers. Instinct and the great waves of pleasure that it caused to roll over him. He thought he might just dissolve into that pleasure when she began to move as well, arching her body against his as though she were feeling what he was feeling. Her hands came up to the sides of his face as she broke breathlessly away.
"All right," she whispered, her voice quivering. "New rule; you'd better hold me or I might just fall!"
Much later, breathless, flushed and nearly desperate, Draco broke away from the lovely girl in his arms. They'd been here for what seemed like hours and Draco knew he had to go or follow the events to their natural conclusion. Since he was pretty certain Weasley hadn't planned on shagging him, the only option was to go. Draco leaned weakly against the wall, barely having the strength to prevent himself from sliding to the floor.
"Are you all right? Did I do something?"
Draco still couldn't believe that a beauty like Ginny Weasley was so self-conscious, especially with him. He rolled his head to the side to look down at her concerned face, giving her a small smile.
"You did something, all right," he said. "You nearly killed me. But, gods, I loved it."
She smiled uncertainly. "Then, why…"
"Think about it, Weasley," he said. "How long do you think I could go on kissing you like that without starting to put my hands in places you might slap me for?"
Enlightenment dawned. "Oh!" she said, blushing. "I—er, I wasn't thinking. I'm sorry. I just wanted to kiss you. I didn't mean to…" She looked around as though searching for the right words.
"I know," he assured her. "Even if you do think I'm 'dead sexy'? Is that how you put it?" He couldn't help a small self-satisfied smile. He didn't think he'd ever been called that before, and it felt damned good, even if the girl probably needed glasses. "Anyway, as much as I would be happy to oblige, even I didn't think you meant to go much farther."
She lifted her hands to her suddenly warm cheeks. "I don't really think I meant to go this far. I just couldn't help myself."
They stayed like that for several more minutes, leaning against the wall and not talking. He wondered what she was thinking. Probably trying to prepare the big kiss-off speech where she reminded him that this had been a one-time deal. She didn't need to remind him. He had been aware of that almost from the start. That was probably why he'd kissed her so desperately. It would be his only chance.
"I suppose its more than time for you to get back to Gryffindor," he said finally, trying not to sound too dejected.
"I suppose," she agreed. "I guess I'll see you around?"
"Yeah, I guess."
Draco stared straight ahead, not wanting to watch her go. If he watched, he might be tempted to pull her back. He couldn't help seeing from the corner of his eye when she pushed away from the wall. He clenched his hands into fists.
"Well, I'll be off, then," she said, jerking her thumb in the direction of Gryffindor.
"Yeah, well, right then," he answered, looking the other direction.
He heard her sigh before her footsteps could be heard heading down the corridor. Damn, he thought, standing straight.
She stopped and slowly turned to face him. "Yes?"
She was not looking hopefully at him. It was merely his fancy, he told himself.
"If I see you lot up here again, I will write you up," he said. Way to go, you stupid ass, he thought as he watched her shoulders droop.
She nodded. "That'll be day after next, right? You do the Astronomy towers every other night."
He tilted his head and gave her a long look. She had his schedule memorized? Weasley stared back for another moment before shrugging and turning away once more. Despite telling himself to just let her go, he hurried to her side.
"But…" he said, touching her shoulder.
Weasley stopped again. "But, what?" she asked staring straight ahead.
"But, if you happen to be up here alone, I…" Draco paused, unable to go on. She'd probably laugh at him, anyway.
"Tell me one thing, Malfoy," she said, looking at him.
"Are you going to be this tentative when we play you? Because if you are, that game is in the bag!"
Draco lifted his brows and gave her an incredulous look. "You think so? Well, let me tell you, little weasel, if I have to knock you from your broom…" He stopped as he realized that she'd been baiting him.
"Would you really knock me from my broom?" she asked, trying not to grin.
Draco lifted his chin slightly. "Naturally," he declared. "If it meant winning the game, of course I would."
She nodded. "Thought so. So it's only when we're talking about kissing that you're nervous around me, right?"
He didn't answer, so she reached up to stroke the stubble along his jaw. "All right, Draco Malfoy, final rule. Ready?"
Draco nodded stiffly, trying not to sigh at her touch. The lunatic girl moved closer and ran a hand down his arm, taking his hand in hers. She led it, unresisting, to her waist. He took the hint and held her. Then she lifted her hand to his nape and pulled him down to her. When she was close enough to whisper into his ear, she said, "Right, then, Malfoy, repeat after me. 'Ginny, would you meet me here when I'm on patrol?'"
Draco pulled back and looked into her eyes. Finally he allowed himself to smile. "Ginny," he said, "would you meet me here every night?"
His chest swelled when she smiled back, her eyes shining. "Of course I will. Now was that so hard?"