Hi all. The bad news is, I have awful writers' block on the other story. Actually, it's more of a writers' desert, to tell you thruth. I know where I'm going, I just don't know how to get there, and there is no literary oasis in five miles.
The good news is, have created my own oasis by digging in the sand and doing that trick with the cup and the cling film. In other words, have written shorter, fluffier fic, of a different ship.
P.S. This is my 20th one shot. Yay!
It was nine in the morning on Saturday and Harry, Ron and Hermione were all sat in the kitchen of the flat with the wireless on the table between them. Ron was still in his dressing gown and there were steaming coffees all around. On the checked tablecloth, the wireless crackled ever so slightly with static as a man's voice spoke to the Wizarding nation.
"It's nine o'clock on Saturday morning and now we have a brand spanking new show for you from nine till midday today. Introducing our newest DJ here at the Wizards' Wireless Network, Ginny Weasley. I'm Daniel Jordan and that was the news at eight, see you again for an update at three."
"Quick! Quick! Turn it up!" Hermione commanded bouncing around in her seat. Harry obediently leaned across the table and twisted the small knob under the speaker.
Across the British Isles, half a million witches and wizards did the same.
The only thing they were rewarded with was a small scuffle coming in over the airwaves and the sound of a couple of people laughing in the background. Soon, however, came the sound of Ginny's voice, giggling.
"Would you believe it?" she asked, her voice still bright with laughter, "my first day here at the WWN and the first thing I learn is that the DJ's chair only has three legs."
"Merlin! That's gross negligence!" said Ron, indignantly, before Hermione shushed him.
"Good morning everyone out there in wireless land!" Ginny declared happily and Harry felt a smile grow on his face as a beat started up in the background. "I'm Ginny Weasley and this my very first show! I should tell you that as a result, everyone in the office is being terribly nice to me and I hope it lasts . . . hint hint."
Harry recognised the beat as belonging to a Weird Sisters song and leaned back in his chair with a hand on his coffee mug, listening.
"The reason I got this job is because my brother and some friends convinced me that all my chatterbox-y-ness should be put to good use, so if you know who they are, they're the ones to smack over the head with your handbag if you see them in the street."
Ron and Harry laughed as Hermione put a hand over her mouth to hide a smile.
"In other news, we have some truly fabulous prizes to give away on the show today, including sound spheres from up and coming bands that are not even in the shops yet and tickets to a certain concert . . ."
The company in the kitchen glanced towards the fireplace as flames rose upwards. Ron, being closest to the grate, twisted around to greet Mrs Weasley, whose face had appeared in the fire.
"Are you listening? Are you?" his mother asked excitedly, her face flushed with pride. Harry could hear the feedback from her own wireless through the fireplace.
"Of course we are mum," Ron said, rolling his eyes, "it's only my little sister's debut on national radio."
"Ooh, she's doing so well," Mrs Weasley cooed, "everybody's here, you know, Fred, George, Bill and Charlie . . . Great Uncle Herbert . . . Whoops, I must go dears, the pancakes are burning! See you soon!"
"Bye, Mrs Weasley!" called Harry while Hermione waved.
"Right now though, I shall play you the new tune from the Weird Sisters called Ouch, I Just Sat On My Wand, and this is released on June the sixth."
As the beat blossomed into a tune, Harry took a sip of coffee and ran a hand through his hair distractedly.
"Are you alright, Harry?" asked Hermione as Ron got up to cast a heating charm on the croissants and assemble the relevant jars of jam.
"What?" Harry's head jerked up anxiously, "oh, yes, I'm fine . . . just tired."
He nodded in emphasis as Hermione smiled and took a jar that Ron was struggling to open, unscrewing the lid easily in one attempt.
Mrs Weasley was right, he thought as Ron huffed. Ginny was doing very well, she was such a good actress that she could even make the nation laugh by falling off a chair. Her personality came out through the wireless waves, he thought fondly, and he would know a lot about her personality, since he had spent the last two years admiring it. It went along with all the other things he had found himself admiring. For example her hair . . . or her eyes . . . or her skin.
What a shame he couldn't see her hair, eyes or skin over the wireless.
But she was doing very well. There was no indication of what had happened earlier that morning at all. She was doing brilliantly considering . . .
"If you went to see the Weird Sisters in concert last weekend, owl us and tell us what it was like," Ginny requested of the nation. "I'll be reading some of your owls to the Network in just a second . . ."
Before she had left that morning, Harry had found her sitting at the kitchen table in the slim light of dawn, clutching a cup of tea. He realised he had not been up this early since they had found the flat a little over two months ago. The sunlight filtering through the window gave everything a faint yellow hue as if the scene were drawn on old parchment.
In that moment, he woke up properly.
"Morning," he said, standing uselessly in the doorway.
"Morning," she replied, looking up from her mug. "Tea? There's a pot next to the sink."
He poured himself a mug slowly and sat down, glancing from her hair to his mug and back again. Finally, he decided to say something.
"Up early?" He suspected it had something to do with her first day.
She sighed ruefully. Her breath spread the thin line of steam from her tea away.
"I'm going to tell you and you alone," she said to him. "I am scared magic-less." All of a sudden Harry felt special.
He smiled and pushed his elbows forward on the table, leaning over to catch her eye.
"I honestly wouldn't worry about it," he told her, "you'll be brilliant, like you always are."
"Well, if the great Harry Potter proclaims it so, then it must be true," she grinned, teasing him because the defeat of Voldemort had made Harry's actions, opinions and personal life worth thousands of galleons to the press.
"Yep," agreed Harry, trying to keep a straight face, "I further proclaim that your show will be an instant hit, the reviews will be marvellous and everyone will love you as much as-" I do "-we do."
She touched his arm and he prayed that she couldn't feel the hairs on the back of it rising.
"Thanks," she said.
Biting his lip in a bid to stop blushing, Harry shook his head and stared at the table.
"I'd better go soon," said Ginny, and the warmth on his arm vanished.
"What?" he asked, looking up.
"It's just preparation," she said, pushing back her chair, "they need to check I know what all the levers and charms do and things like that."
"Oh," said Harry, stumbling up and following her out into the hall. He absently helped her get her coat on while she fiddled with her hair in the hallway mirror and glanced round for her handbag. "Well, I'll be listening, then."
"Oh, don't," Ginny moaned, turning round whilst looking for her keys. "You make me even more nervous."
"Me and Hermione and Ron," Harry smirked.
"Your parents, friends, your entire extended family . . ."
"Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!" she ordered, smacking him on the arm with every command. "You horrible, horrible man!" she accused, smiling through her indignation. Harry took a deep breath.
"Good luck, then," Harry said, as she prepared to apparate.
"See you on the air," she grinned, and leaned up to kiss him on the cheek.
Something subconscious must have made him tilt the same way, and all of a sudden, he was kissing her, or the other way around . . . or something like that, but the point was that the kiss wasn't something you'd share with your friend, or your flat mate . . . or someone like that.
It was like in a Quidditch match, where the Seeker sees the Snitch. At that moment of recognising the glint of gold, all rational thoughts are obliterated, and there is only the desperate wish for catching something so precious.
When kissing Ginny, Harry couldn't think about what she'd say, or what he'd have to explain, he could only think about her and how precious she was . . . or something like that.
Of course, one of the differences between this kiss and Quidditch was that once the Snitch was caught, there wouldn't have to be hell to pay.
"Er . . ." said Ginny, once her lips were not otherwise engaged.
"Uum . . ." Harry replied, wondering what in magic he was going to say.
"Right," Ginny continued quietly, frowning slightly and dropping her gaze.
"Yeah," Harry agreed, faintly, biting his lip.
"I'd . . . better go," she said, as if she were not thinking about what she was saying at all.
"Yeah," he agreed as his hands clenched and unclenched nervously in front of him.
"See you," Ginny said softly as she stepped backwards.
"Bye," replied Harry after closing his eyes for a moment.
With a crack, she was gone, and Harry was left in a kind of terrible, crippling horror at the two minutes that had just taken place. Well, everything after the kiss. That had been . . . something else . . .
Cringing with the dreadfulness of it all, Harry had wondered back into the kitchen and tried not to think about what would happen when he next saw her. He hated to think that he had ruined her first day at the Network for her, but listening to her now, after Ron and Hermione had come downstairs and dug up the wireless, she didn't seem at all flustered by the fact that he had essentially attacked her in the hallway of their flat at half past seven of this very morning.
"I've got a couple of your messages sent in by owl this morning," Ginny told the wizarding nation as Harry picked at the toast in front of him and Ron stirred his porridge. "Boris Prattle in Shropshire says he went to The Weird Sisters' concert last night and apparently he was so close to the stage that he got dripped on by the lead guitarist's sweat." Being just about to tuck into his breakfast, Ron hesitated. "Lovely," Ginny commented wryly, and there was a rifle of parchment.
"The author of this next one says: 'Hi Ginny, I'm loving the show on this fine Saturday morn. You have a very sexy voice. Do you want to go out with me? Yours, Pickled Toad'."
There followed only the sound of the background beat and the sound of tearing parchment.
"Funny, Fred," came Ginny's voice again.
At precisely that moment in time, Ron and Hermione were looking at Harry very oddly while he choked on his toast. He didn't really know why he was choking, exactly. I mean, why would he be bothered because he thought for one moment that some other wizard out there thought Ginny Weasley's voice was sexy? Obviously it was a joke from the twins, but he'd be stupid to think that he was the only wizard who fancied her, especially now that she was moderately famous.
She was lovely.
"Now then, earlier I mentioned the truly marvellous prizes that this radio station gives away, and today is no exception. Today, I have one pair of tickets . . . to Celestina Warbeck."
There was an appropriate amount of dramatic pause on the airwaves.
Across the British Isles, half a million witches and wizards stopped what they were doing to listen.
"And we know these tickets are the rarest objects in the Magical Music Industry today. These tickets are changing hands at the rate of pixie dust and we want to make sure that whoever we give them to deserves them. So this is how it works."
"We want you to owl us and give us a reason, in one hundred words or less, why you deserve these tickets."
Across the British Isles, half a million witches and wizards dove for a piece of parchment and a quill.
"Your reason can be comical, it can pull at the heartstrings, or it can just be plain randomness. We will know if you are lying, there are lie-detector charms that can do that sort of thing, but the results will be announced by the end of the show. So while you think about that, here is the singing sorceress's latest record."
It wasn't as if he was intending to do anything about what had happened that morning. In fact, he wasn't even intending to mention anything about what had happened that morning. She obviously didn't feel the same way about him, from the way she had (quite rightly, he thought) fled the embarrassing scene in hallway, so, with any luck, she wouldn't refer to it, he wouldn't refer to it, and they could forget it ever happened.
Fabulous, Harry thought glumly.
"Are you sure you're alright, Harry?" Hermione said, scrutinizing him over the top her herbal tea. Ron looked up from his breakfast as well.
Harry sighed silently. Living within fifty meters of the same people for ten years was bound to make them unusually perceptible. There was also the fact the Hermione was a genius, but there was nothing to be done about either of these things, he supposed.
There was no doubt that they'd realize in the end. He may as well save them some trouble.
"Well . . . the things is, I have a bit of a moral dilemma," he began, inspecting the tablecloth.
"Oh?" inquired Hermione, setting down her mug.
"Actually it's more of a . . . romantic dilemma," Harry amended.
"Oh?" Hermione said again, with considerably more interest. She and Ron glanced at each other. Neither of them could remember Harry talking to them too much about his love life in the three years that they had been living in the flat. The simple reason for this was that there was basically nothing nor no one involved in his love life that was worth talking about.
Apart from Ginny, but she was so worth talking about that he couldn't talk about her . . . at least not in front of Ron, if you see how that worked.
"In a manner of speaking, a romantic dilemma, yes, you could say that," Harry dithered.
"Stop beating around the bush and get to the point of your romantic dilemma, then," Ron implored him, intent to know what this was all about.
Harry bit his lips for a moment and braced himself.
"I'm in love with Ginny," he said earnestly.
"I knew that," Hermione said, spooning honey into her tea.
"What?" demanded Ron, "and would it have been a terrible strain to let me in on this little secret?"
"It wasn't my secret to tell," Hermione replied primly, "besides, Ginny has no idea, and I couldn't have you blurting it out to her."
"I would not have blurted it out,' Ron grumbled, "nobody tells me anything round here." Harry was very thankful that he didn't seem to be ruffled by the fact that his best friend was in love with his little sister, but more by the fact that no one had had the sympathy to inform him.
"About that," Harry said to Hermione, "she erm . . . might have twigged." It was Hermione's turned to be incredulous.
"Oh?" she asked.
"I might have kissed her this morning-" Harry told them, "accidentally- before she left."
Ron pulled a face in amazement at the situation.
"How did that work out, then?" he asked.
"It was a bit awkward," said Harry, "she left, without saying anything particularly encouraging."
"Well, it's alright, she likes you," Ron said.
"She does?" Harry looked up from the table with what he suspected was a bit of a pathetic amount of hope.
"Yeah," nodded Ron, "has done for hippogriffs' years, hasn't she Hermione?"
"No, she got over that," Hermione said, sorry to be the bearer of bad news, "quite a while ago, in fact."
"Oh," Ron said, "sorry about that. Nobody tells me anything around here," he grumbled.
"B-but if you told her," Hermione said, trying to salvage some of Harry's misplaced hope, "I'm sure she'd be more than willing to give you a chance."
On the radio, Celestina Warbeck stopped singing and Ginny's voice filled the kitchen again.
"Some of these entries are brilliant," she said, and there was smile in her voice. "And I shall read some of the best ones that our people at the Network have picked out from the thousands that we have gotten in. 'I deserve the tickets because I'm getting my kitchen re-done and the bad plumbing keeps making water come out of the oven. I need to escape!' from Sophie Tiffids in Sheffield. 'I want the tickets because I bought a pair last Thursday and they were incinerated when my indebted brother thought they were heating charm bills and threw them in the fireplace,' from Roger Maynard in Highbury. 'I deserve the tickets because I love you with every spark of magic in my being and I'd take you to see Celestina,' from Pickled Toa- . . ."
Ginny trailed off. Again there was the sound of parchment being torn up and some mutterings and laughter in the background.
"Fred, there are laws against this sort of thing, you know."
Dramatic music filled the background as Ginny continued.
"But as it's nearing the end of my show, I think I'll announce the winner of our small competition for a pair of tickets that most music fans would shoot themselves in the foot for."
Across the British Isles, half a million witches and wizards crosses their fingers in desperate hope or prayed to anything they deemed holy enough.
"We've got the winner in our fireplace right now and I'm going to ask what's your name and where are you from?"
Harry cringed as one of the most piercing screams he had ever heard rent through the air of the kitchen, followed by a round of high, hysterical laughter.
"So your name is 'Ahh' and you're from 'Hahaha'," Ginny summed up in a vaguely amused voice.
"Ican'tbelieveit, Ican'tbelieveit, Ican'tbelieveit, Ican'tbelieveit, Ican'tbelieveit," the girl (for there was no way it could have been a boy) continued in a screechy voice. The sounds of her exclamations were magically lowered, however, so that Ginny could talk over her.
"So in case you're wondering, this is Harriet Fondue, who wrote us an owl saying that she deserved the tickets because she and her sister collectively own all Celestina's sound spheres, all her merchandise, everything that has ever been auctioned by her and they couldn't get tickets because their cat swallowed one of Celestina's very own fake eyelashes while they were on sale and they had to take him to the animal hospital."
The words in the background had reverted back to shrieks of joy.
"Now that's what's called 'obsession' in anyone else's language, but 'deserving of a pair of tickets' in the Wizards' Wireless Network's," said Ginny, laughing a little, then she turned up the winner again and said "Hey! You won! Anything you want to say?"
"Iloveyou, Iloveyou, Iloveyou, Iloveyou, Iloveyou . . ."
"She is bonkers. Anyway, here's an old school tune from The Remembralls, recorded way back in nineteen sixty-four. If anyone can remember exactly what they were doing the first time they heard this track, then owl me."
Across the British Isles, one wizard walked back and forth during the three minutes and fourteen seconds of the song, trying to decide what to do. Finally, he knelt before the fireplace.
"We've got some truly amazing owls in about this song," Ginny told the nation, "there are some really hard core old schoolers out there who've been listening to the Network for a very long time . . ."
She trailed off and the airwaves were blank for a moment, filled only by the sound of discreet muttering.
". . . some bloke . . . fireplace . . . think you should take it . . . Harry Potter! . . ."
"Oh right," Ginny said, "well apparently, we've got someone . . . Harry?"
From his place in the grate of the Wizards' Wireless office, Harry could see her sat across from him in her chair with three legs, completely surrounded by buttons and levers and flashing lights. Apparently, radio technology was advanced. She blinked at him and pushed back her crimson hair worriedly. Around her were various members of the broadcasting team, most of them holding cups of tea.
He wondered briefly whether anyone else could hear him. Then, he decided he didn't care.
"Ginny, I'm sorry about this morning and I want to tell you that I really meant that kiss, I really meant it, even though it probably wasn't the best time for it."
Across the British Isles, half a million witches and wizards either dropped something, fell off something or stubbed their big toe on something in shock.
Ginny gaped and looked as though, for such a renowned chatterbox, she didn't know what to say.
"Harry, I thought you were against this sort of public . . . nation-wide display of affection," Ginny said quietly.
"No, I mean . . . yeah, sort of, but listen. I just realised I loved you and . . . I had to tell you and it didn't quite register how many other people I'd be telling as well," he said, lamely.
"I see. Could you not have waited? Why did it have to be now?"
"Well, because of the twins, actually."
"The twins?" Whatever answer Ginny had been expecting (if any), this was obviously not it.
"Yeah, those owls they sent in made me realise that . . . well, you're famous now. Your face is going to be on the cover of magazines, you're going to be well in the money and your voice is going to reach Merlin-knows-how-many people every Saturday morning," Harry explained.
"How would this change the way I feel about you?" Ginny asked quietly.
"I just wanted you to know that there was someone who loved you before you were giving away concert tickets, that's all," Harry said.
Then his brain did a double take.
"Hold on, what was that?"
"Harry, during everything we've been through, through all the people knowing who you are, and everything you've done, and all the people you've had to save, you've still stayed the same, lovely person. I don't intend to change any more than you did. And I don't intend to stop loving you."
Across the radio station's airwaves, there was the sound of a scraping chair and then there was nothing until another's man's voice filled the silence.
"Er . . . well, I'm Daniel Jordan, and Ginny seems to be a bit . . . busy at the moment." There was much amusement in his voice. "That's the good thing about the floo network, isn't it? You can snog through it. So I suppose it's a news update now . . ."
Back in their flat, Ron and Hermione looked at each other moodily.
"I didn't know Ginny still loved Harry," Hermione muttered.
"I didn't know she wasn't supposed to!" Ron said back, sulkily, "and I didn't know Harry loved her!"
"Typical, they broadcast their feelings on the radio to the entire country before they say anything to us."
"Nobody tells us anything around here."
Yes, so . . . review! You never know, you may be the person who inspires me!