A/N: This contains a handful of private jokes so if you came upon something that you couldn't comprehend or doesn't make any sense, that's probably it.
JennaMae, this one's for you, dear. Happy birthday! Just kill me the next time you see me…but of course, I know you wouldn't. teehee
"Hermione?" Ginny Weasley called out as soon as she appeared in the living room of the flat Hermione was sharing with Ron and Harry. She balanced the shopping bags she was carrying as she found her way through the junk that littered the living room. Cloaks and Auror robes lay in a messy heap on the couch, two empty coffee mugs stood beside a platter that was empty except for a few biscuit crumbs on the center table. The hastily folded up copy of The Daily Prophet also lay on the edge of the table and a couple of throw pillows were piled on top of one another at the other side of the room right in front of that Muggle television set Harry had insisted on buying.
Ginny let out a huge groan. No wonder Hermione was always ranting on about how tired she was of cleaning up the mess those two overgrown pigs she was living with made. In an instant flick of her wand, Ginny sent everything in the living room to its proper place. Now, that's better, she thought, smiling to herself before trudging her way to the kitchen.
The rest of the house was quiet, however. Hermione might not be home yet, Ginny thought as she arranged the groceries. The two girls were planning to have an all-night drinking session to celebrate-nothing at all, actually. They had decided that if those guys could have those boys' nights out as an excuse to get drunk for no apparent reason, the girls could have theirs, too.
"Oh, there you are," Hermione said, walking into the kitchen, a bottle of Odgen's Old Firewhisky in one hand and a package from an unknown restaurant on the other. "You fixed the living room, didn't you? I was so surprised to see it so tidy that I was already thinking of giving those two gits a nice present for cleaning up their mess."
Ginny chuckled. "Like that will ever happen. What's that?" she asked, pointing at the package Hermione was opening.
"Oh this? Lechon," Hermione said as she transferred the contents from its wrapper to the plate. "I saw this in one of those Muggle restaurants that serve Asian cuisine." She held the plate out for Ginny. "Try it, it's good."
Ginny took a piece. "This is quite delicious. I bet this tastes better with Firewhisky."
Hermione chuckled. "Can't wait to get started, eh?"
"Actually." Ginny laughed, opening the pantry to get two glasses and a huge bowl for the crisps she'd bought. "You made sure those two won't be barging in tonight?"
Hermione nodded, uncorking the bottle. "Yes. I literally threw them out of the house and told them not to come home until tomorrow morning or else they'll have to face my wrath."
"And they willingly obliged?"
"Of course! They couldn't do anything since they trashed the whole place with that little night out they had," Hermione said smugly. "Ron was actually worried I might stop shagging him if they didn't do what I said."
"Hermione!" Ginny exclaimed, giving the other girl a disgusted look. "Too much information, okay? I don't want to know about my brother's activities in bed."
Hermione laughed, taking the glasses from Ginny's hands. "But you want to know about Harry's?"
Ginny's eyebrows arched up. "And why would I be interested in Harry's sex life? He could be shagging every woman living on this street for all I care."
Hermione shot her friend a look that was part knowing, part teasing.
"And why are you giving me that look?" Ginny snapped, her hands flying to her hips.
"No reason," Hermione said, laughing inwardly as she poured Firewhisky into the two glasses. "So, you're not really interested then?"
Ginny pursed her lips. "Of course not! Why would I be? I'm over him and you know that!"
Hermione shrugged her shoulders in an if-you-say-so kind of way but still kept the knowing smile on her lips. She dropped a couple of ice cubes into the glasses before handing one to Ginny. "Here, maybe you might change your mind after a glass of Firewhisky."
Ginny shot Hermione a warning look. When would they quit teasing her about Harry? That issue was way dead, buried into the depths of the earth. "Oh snuff it out, will you!"
Hermione ignored her friend's stare and held up her glass. "Cheers!"
Ginny blew the stray strands of hair off her face in defeat and held up her glass to meet Hermione's. "Cheers!"
This had better be good, she thought as she brought her glass to her mouth, the first taste of the alcoholic drink kissing her lips.
Two hours later…
"Oh, this is soooo good," Ginny slurred, chugging the whole contents of her glass. "Now, I know why those guys love this sooo much." At that, a loud hiccup escaped her lips, sending her into gales of laughter.
Hermione laughed along with her friend and took a big gulp of Firewhisky. "I believe this gives me the license to trash this place."
"Yeah, let's get even," Ginny said, filling her glass with another shot of alcohol. "But there's just the two of us. Can we create that much havoc compared to five drunk guys?"
Hermione grabbed the bottle from Ginny and poured herself some more. She twisted her long, bushy brown hair on top of her head and stuck her wand in it. "We can try, right?" She raised her glass and took another big sip. "So, Ginny, you're not really interested in Harry anymore?"
She was expecting to receive another death glare from that fiery redhead sitting in front of her at mere mention of her feelings toward Harry but the reaction she got was extremely different. To Hermione's surprise, Ginny's face went from exhilarated to sullen in just a matter of seconds.
"Stupid git," Ginny muttered under her breath. She slouched on her seat, her eyes shooting furious glances to no one in particular. "Stupid, stupid git."
"Stupid git?" Hermione repeated, unable to make any sense out of her friend's answer. "Why?"
"I just want him to love me!" Ginny suddenly cried, banging her fists on the table. "Is that hard to do, Hermione? Tell me! Is it hard to fall in love with me?"
It took all of Hermione's self-control to stop herself from laughing. Instead, she concentrated all her will to make her head shake from left to right. "No, of course it's not."
"Then why is it that git still won't love me back?" Ginny exclaimed vehemently. "Everybody tells me that I'm pretty and smart and all that, but why can't I make him notice me? Why!"
"Ginny, you said it. He's a git, that's why," Hermione said softly, not knowing what she should do to calm her friend down from her sudden outburst.
"I know he's an arse but I love him."
"But you just said you're not interested in him."
Ginny groaned. "That is so not true. I just want myself to believe that since he's been such an insufferable wanker."
"So you still love him then?"
Ginny nodded. "I've always loved him. I thought you know that!"
"But you've just said a while ago-"
Ginny waved her hands dismissively in front of her. "Forget what I've said. I was lying."
Hermione bit her lip hard to fight the smile that was threatening to spread across her face. "You admit it, then."
"Yeah, yeah," Ginny muttered, taking in another gulp of liquid. "Harry doesn't have a girlfriend, does he?"
Hermione shook her head.
"Not that I know of."
"Then why doesn't he notice me?!!" Ginny wailed, slamming her glass on the table and making Hermione nearly jump from her seat. "I bet if I walk naked in front of him, he won't even bat an eyelash!"
"Ginny!" Hermione exclaimed, almost spilling the contents of the drink she was holding. "Where did you get that idea?"
Ginny shrugged her shoulders and pushed the loose strands of hair off her face. She took another sip from her glass then stuffed a handful of crisps into her mouth. She propped her chin on her hands, her eyes downcast, the fury that had been emanating from them the moment before was gone. She let out a sigh before looking up at her friend, her face dejected.
"I just want to be there for him, you know," she began in a hushed tone. "I'm nothing more than a friend to him, I know that, because if he saw me as more than that, I'd probably be shagging him senseless right at this very moment." Ginny chuckled, finding her monologue amusing. "But I just want to be there for him-listen to him, help him get through everything. You know what I mean, right, Hermione?"
Hermione didn't know if she should finally let go of the laugh she was holding back or sympathize with her friend's misery, but she decided to just do the latter since she did not know what an intoxicated Weasley could do to her if she pissed her off. "Yeah, I know exactly how you feel."
Ginny absent-mindedly traced the rim of her glass with her fingers, her eyes staring into space, her thoughts whirling. Yes, she loved Harry; she had loved him for a long time. She had been keeping these feelings to herself for as long as she could remember. And this was enough. She had suffered from unrequited love for nine years. Nine bloody years. And she, Ginny Weasley, never let anyone push her around.
Suddenly, she stood up from her chair, starling Hermione in the process.
"Ginny! Where are you going?" Hermione demanded, as Ginny drunkenly swayed her way around her kitchen.
"I know what I have to do," Ginny said, staggering to the kitchen counter. She grabbed a piece of parchment and the quill that Hermione kept inside one of the drawers and wrote furiously, each stroke of her quill echoing in the silent house. She forcefully folded the paper up before grabbing Hedwig who was slumbering contently in her cage. "Send this to that great prat who owns you," she instructed as she fumbled to tie the letter to the owl's feet.
Hedwig's large amber eyes stared at Ginny for a moment as if she was contemplating whether to follow the orders of a drunken girl or not. And as if she'd decided to just follow what she was told, Hedwig hooted and flew out of the open window.
"There. That will serve him right," Ginny said, slumping on her seat opposite Hermione. She grabbed the bottle of Firewhisky and poured a glassful for herself. She picked it up and downed all of its contents, wiping her mouth with the sleeves of her robes.
"What did you tell Harry?"
Ginny took another big gulp. "Oh, just stuff."
"What stuff?" Hermione asked, sipping from her own glass.
Ginny rested her head on her palms, looking like she was deep in her thoughts. "I don't quite remember. Just some stuff."
"Ginny! You didn't tell him what you just told me, did you?"
Ginny gave her friend a nonchalant shrug. "Oh, I don't know. I don't remember."
Hermione stared wide-eyed at Ginny. She couldn't believe her friend's boldness and at the same time worried about what Ginny could have written in that letter given her frame of mind. She continued watching her as Ginny grabbed the bottle again and turned it around, reading the label.
"Imported," Ginny blurted out.
Hermione shook her head, sighing. Alcohol.
"Ginny," a voice said as she felt a pair of strong arms start to shake her awake an hour later. "Ginny, wake up."
Ginny strained her tired eyes, trying her best to force them open as they seemed to be glued together. A pair of green eyes enclosed into a pair of black-rimmed glasses-that particular pair of eyes that could make her drown instantly at its mere glance-was staring down at her in concern. She lifted her head an inch higher, managing a half-smile.
"Hi, Harry," Ginny said before she blacked out on top of the table.
The blinding late morning rays of the sun cast pure white light from the open windows of the room, making Ginny squint her eyes. A white rush of pain circuited inside her head. Ginny groaned, slamming her forehead onto the pillows.
I swear I'm never going to drink that much again, she thought as another stab of pain pierced her head, making her feel like it was being torn in half.
She remembered knocking off a bottle of Firewhisky with Hermione, blabbing on and on about senseless stuff like a blundering idiot, and making Hedwig send a letter-but to whom and what she had written, she couldn't quite recall. I just hope it's not that embarrassing, she thought, groaning inwardly. Oh shit! I hope to God I didn't send that owl to Harry!
Ginny rammed her eyes shut trying to remember what exactly had happened the night before but everything was such in a haze, made worse by her fiercely aching head. Damn this hangover! She knew what she just needed-a long, relaxing bath, a strong cup of coffee, and a flask of Hangover Potion. She only hoped Hermione had saved some for her.
Still with closed eyes, she turned around to her other side to get out of the bed but she found her body bumping into something. Something was blocking her. Something long, something with long limbs and a firm chest.
Someone was lying beside her… in bed.
Panicking, her eyes flew open and she was greeted by the image of a smiling Harry. He had his head propped up; his hair was bed-tousled, making it stick up in every place imaginable; and a huge, satisfied grin was plastered on his face.
"Good morning, Ginny."
A/N: Special thanks to (or should I say blame?) Galena for giving me a more wicked idea for the ending (that is so open to various interpretations) and to DailyProphetReporting for the beta. The Hangover Potion was shamelessly stolen from Lady Draherm.