By: Lady Lithe
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.
Summary: Sometimes when things don't go your way, you just follow your designated path. But with matchmaker Harry Potter trying to direct Ginny Weasley's path toward another boy, well… Sometimes you just have to take the highway.
Naru-chan: Ah! I'm so sorry for the delay. I've been so busy lately... I'll start to try writing again. I'm so sorry. But here is the long awaited companion piece to A Matchless Match. It's basically everything is Ginny's point of view.
IMPORTANT: I have incorporated some details from Sweet Days of Summer and A Matchless Match. If you have not read them, it's fine, but you won't understand some facts. These: Ginny finds out that Harry owns Snitch-covered boxers over a bonding moment (Chapter One of Sweet Days of Summer) and Harry tells Ginny that he'll be her matchmaker (Chapter One, A Matchless Match). Anyway, enjoy!
Chapter One: Two Fights For Harry
The truth is, I gave my heart away a long time ago, my whole heart, and I never really got it back. – Sweet Home Alabama
Ginny froze in the middle of writing a sentence and suddenly looked up. Without really seeing him, she knew he was there. It was something in the air that changed, as if the air had become heavier and thicker, yet lighter and brighter than before. Would she ever be able to explain how she knew or even why she knew? She simply did. And sure enough, he was there. There was a glimpse of his unmistakable chaotic raven locks over the crowd of people as he passed by the library doors. At least…it was unmistakable to her.
Instantly, she rose from her seat and stuffed her things into her bag. It was silly, really, she thought as she fumbled with her ink pot, accidentally smearing some black ink on her fingers in her rush. She was busy and had to finish her work. Professor Snape would surely slaughter her tomorrow if she didn't finish this essay! And she would hate to give him that pleasure. So it was utterly ridiculous of her to leave at the moment—she had actually been making great progress once she had finally resigned herself. Not to mention that leaving was entirely inconvenient and unnecessary and—once again, just silly.
Slinging her bag over her shoulder, she looked up again to see his raven head disappear from view. She hurried after him, feeling her breath caught in her throat.
"Har—" she called out, but the breath was shoved out of her when she slammed right into something and it wasn't until she stared up at the spinning ceiling of the library that she realized she had fallen. Head spiraling and back aching, she groaned miserably. She had just made it to the door of the library too.
"I'm terribly sorry Ginny!"
She slowly sat up to see Justin Finch-Fletchley, a Hufflepuff one year older, towering over her. He was, without any better way of saying it, exceptionally handsome. His attractive brown locks fell just over his intense cobalt eyes. Many girls would kill to be in her (painful) position. However, instead of looking at the gorgeous boy, she was straining to look over his shoulder in hopes of catching another glimpse of black hair.
"No problem, I was distracted, Justin," Ginny said politely. She was about to push herself off the ground when he quickly extended his hand so she felt it was only courteous if she took it, even though this whole ordeal was slowing her down. Once she was on her feet, though, it didn't appear as if he had any intentions of letting go of her any time soon. A flicker of annoyance went through her. By now, he was probably gone.
"Can I make it up to you?" Justin asked, smiling charmingly. She idly wondered how someone could have such straight teeth.
"No, it's fine," she smiled in return. She wondered when he was going to let go of her hand. Shaking it off would be rude…but holding it for so long was quite rude also. "I'm not hurt, so…"
"But I insist," he pressed, not getting the hint that she wanted to leave. He took a step closer, much to her discomfort. "Hogsmeade weekend is coming up soon, you know…so why don't I treat you? Being D.A. buddies and all?"
He flashed his pearly whites once again.
"Erm," she said in the same polite voice with another polite smile, "There was no damage done, so it's quite all right. Also…I have ink all over my hand," she added in hopes that he would let go.
"Believe me," he laughed brushing away his brown hair with his free hand. She blinked for a moment. Had she really seen sparkles or had it just been her imagination? "Money is not a problem for me."
She felt an angry stab of annoyance. He didn't need to gloat about it. It wasn't as if he had earned that money so he shouldn't waste it so freely.
"I'd be more than delighted to accompany you," he continued, completely oblivious to her irritation. The he raised her hand to his lips with a smile. "And when has ink ever hurt anyone?"
She bit back an impatient sigh. This was very strange behavior coming from a bloke who barely spoke two words to her the year before. She opened her mouth to try to convince him one last time that she just didn't want to go with him when a loud holler cut her off.
"Finch-Fletchley! Just what do you think you're doing?" Ron had appeared out of absolutely nowhere and had grabbed Justin by his collar. His blue eyes flashed menacingly at the poor, handsome boy. Justin instantly let go of her hand as if it had burned him. Hermione fluttered behind Ron, trying to calm him down.
"R-Ron! Old buddy old pal! I-I was just apologizing to your little sister here!" Justin laughed nervously, eyeing Ron's raised wand pointed directly at his perfect nose. Ginny refrained from gasping indignantly. What was with this change of attitude? How come "Ginny" had been replaced with "little sister?"
"Well, you've already done that," Ron pointed out crossly as he attempted to wave Hermione off of his arm.
"That's enough Ronald!" she whispered fiercely.
"You'd better listen to your girlfriend," Ginny said warningly, tapping her wand against her palm. She wasn't in the mood for this, especially after missing the chance to catch up to Harry. She irritably blew away a scarlet strand of hair from her pale face.
"Stay out of this Ginny," Ron grunted, his eyes still on the slowly backing away Justin.
"Ha! For your in–for–ma–tion," she retorted snappily, jabbing his chest with each syllable. Ron let go of Justin's collar as Ginny pushed him back with each hard prod. Justin took this golden opportunity to run away. Ron opened his mouth to scream after the boy, but Ginny quickly interrupted him. "This has everything to do with me, and nothing to do with you!"
"Don't tell me you're actually interested in Finch-Fletchley!" Ron rubbed his sore chest as he glared at her incredulously. He looked as if she had sprouted an extra head or two. "He's not one bit good for you."
"I'll be the judge of that, thank you very much!"
"Well, I don't like him."
"I don't care if you like him or not!" she screamed, shaking with fury. Why was it that he always had to do this? All of them? All of her six brothers. When would they return back to the loving days when it didn't matter what gender she was? When they would all run around and get dirty in the backyard and she was their equal?
"Ron, she can take care of herself," Hermione insisted, tugging on her boyfriend's arm. Ginny looked at her best friend gratefully.
"B-But she's nothing but a kid!" Ron moaned like a child as if Ginny weren't there listening. The tears burned more than ever, but she refused to let them fall. That would mean defeat—and she absolutely refused to let him win. "She doesn't really know what's on these boys' minds. And it's my duty as—"
"It's your duty to stay out of my business! You overbearing, overprotective, over—!"
"I'm only doing what's right for you!" he burst out. He would have stepped toward to her, but Hermione held him back, even though Ginny wouldn't have backed away.
"If you knew what was good for me, you would have never treated me like a stranger my first year! Where was your duty then?" she cried out. She had one satisfactory feeling of seeing his mouth drop open in shock. She would have felt a twinge of guilt for blaming him if she hadn't been so fed up. She turned to walk away when his falter voice stopped her.
"W-Wait, this isn't over!"
She swerved back and looked him right in the eye, so fiercely that his head jerked back involuntarily. "What? Do I have to wait until I find someone that you think is worthy?"
"Well, I—" he stuttered unsurely. He seemed to want to say yes, but for once his logic was screaming at him not to.
"You know what, Ron? That will never happen! Because you'll never ever be fully satisfied with anyone! No one will ever be good enough—what you don't realize is that even if you or I or anyone else found this bloke it won't matter! He can be perfect, flawless, more wonderful than anything else in the world! He'll buy me my favorite flowers on our first date, he won't try to kiss me until our third date, he'll be the perfect gentleman, he'll know all the right things to say, he'll make you laugh and me laugh, and he'll make me feel like the luckiest girl in the world. But it won't matter unless he's—" The words streamed from her mouth and she couldn't hold it back anymore. She had been holding them too long. And she hated that she couldn't hold them any longer. "It won't matter because he'll never be the one that I want!"
"Ginny…" Ron said softly.
"Save it!" Ginny said furiously, not sure whether she was angry with Ron or herself. She couldn't stand to see that horribly sad and pitying look on his face. She just turned away and hurried off in the direction she saw Harry going. "Just save it…"
Ginny was not one to not pay attention in class. She wasn't half as studious as her older brother Percy, but she liked to think that she was fairly decent - more than the Fred, George, or Ron anyway. So it was strange for her not to be paying attention in Transfigurations under the observant eye of Professor McGonagall. Still, here she was, staring blankly out the window with her chin propped on her hand when she should be focusing on changing her squirrel into a scarf. Idly she stroked the top of the squirrel's head.
It was funny really, how she and Harry became friends over the summer. He had visited the Burrow as always, but this time, instead of being with Ron and Hermione, he chose to spend time with her. Granted, he probably had only done it because Ron and Hermione were constantly fighting, but over time, they had become genuine friends, something she had not really hoped of ever achieving. Bonding over boxers had not been exactly the most romantic thing she had dreamed of, but she wasn't complaining.
She highly doubted any other girl had slept with him. Not in that sense, of course, but in the same bed. The squirrel rubbed its head back against her finger, as if agreeing with her. That, or it was thanking her for not turning it into an object.
She sighed into her hand lifelessly. Last night's conversation kept replaying over and over in her mind… She could still see him perfectly, but was not surprised at the least by this. He probably didn't realize how much she watched him. She practically had him memorized. Like the way he would fiddle with his Quill when he was deep in thought, or the way he ran his right hand through his hair when he was irritated, but used two hands when he was extremely frustrated, or how he would chew on his bottom lip when he was anxious… She could write a book about him if she really wanted to.
Yet out of all of the looks she knew so very well, the look she liked the best of all was his smiled. His entire face would light up, especially his emerald eyes. Those lips of his would curve upward, making his mature face lose all that tension and he would look like a teenager without the world on his shoulders. Somehow, the look never failed to warm her heart.
But last night it seemed to do the exact opposite.
He said, with that wonderful smile of his on his face, that he would find her someone perfect. But that wasn't what she cared about. All she wanted was…
Ginny smiled wearily at the squirrel, but pretended to seriously wave her wand as Professor McGonagall glanced her way. She felt a strange tingling on her neck and she glanced over her shoulder. Her friend Colin Creevey quickly ducked and focused on his squirrel, and she shrugged before returning to her thoughts.
It wasn't that she didn't appreciate what Harry was trying to do for her sake. She was happy that they were such good friends! And…she loved being friends with him. Honestly, she did. Just because whenever he touched her red hair…or spoke to her…or looked her way maybe – just because maybe sometimes they made her heart would beat a teeny tiny bit faster than usual didn't mean anything.
The hairs on her neck were standing on end again and made her shudder. Who was doing that? She swiftly and furiously inspected over her back, only to find that everyone was busily consumed with transfiguring his or her squirrel. So far no one had succeeded. With one last suspicious glance across the room, she returned to her thoughts.
That was right. Those strange feelings that arose whenever Ginny was with him were nothing but friendship. Harry was just a friend. That just so happens to now be her matchmaker. At least she trusted him with all her heart. Maybe she should really consider whomever he offered. She couldn't very well live her life this way! Not that…she was living it in any particular way because she didn't like a certain raven-haired boy. Undoubtedly not one that was the best Seeker in the school in the past century.
With the swish of her wand, she succeeded in changing her squirrel. Only somehow it had turned into a Snitch.
Thankfully, the class was dismissed before Professor McGonagall saw what she had accidentally done (and realized that the redhead had obviously not been paying attention). She swiftly caught the Snitch that was whizzing around her and stuffed it into her pocket. Without hesitation, she shoved her books and parchments away and made her way out of the classroom. She felt the huge urge to talk to Hermione, her best friend and was so concentrated in leaving that she nearly jumped when a hand grabbed her by the shoulder.
She saw a flash of dark hair, and for a moment her heart was in her throat.
"Ginny! I was waiting for you. Can…can we talk?"
The moment had passed as quickly as it had come when she found herself staring up into eager midnight blue eyes. It was Michael Corner, her ex-boyfriend. He still looked the same, with his dark brown bangs falling over his eyes. He was smiling a bit too widely and his cheeks were flushed. It was strange to see him here alone. The only times she seemed to ever see him this year had been when he was completely fused together with a certain raven-haired Ravenclaw.
She shrugged his hand off of her shoulder and her eyes darted around the corridor. Several people had noticed the odd pairing and were whispering among themselves.
"We don't have anything to talk about anymore, Michael," Ginny said firmly. "I thought I made that clear last year."
"No—Ginny, you see," he stammered, rubbing his neck nervously. She had to bite her tongue from telling him to stop that. It was something she only liked watching Harry do. "What I did last year…it was a mistake."
She simply raised an eyebrow. "Yes, and what you've done this year was perfectly fine."
"No! I mean, okay, I admit…my actions weren't the best or the wisest, but people make mistakes, right? So will you forgive me?" He grabbed her hands and she felt impatience run through her again.
"It's fine, Michael. I forgive you, but I don't see how it will help you any," she sighed. She just didn't want to deal with this.
"Great!" he laughed excitedly. "So you know a Hogsmeade trip is coming up soon, so we should definitely –"
"Wait, wait, wait," she interrupted him, twisting her hand from his as she glared up at him incredulously. Her voice rose with ever word. "Just because I forgive you doesn't mean that I want to get back together with you! Yesterday you were still snogging Cho Chang!"
Michael looked around him uneasily as people began to murmur loudly. Ginny honestly didn't care if she was creating a scene—even Colin Creevey was watching, and absently she was extremely grateful that he wasn't carrying his camera around with him anymore—but she just couldn't believe this! Just who exactly did Michael think he was? Did he really think she would just jump into his arms the moment that he turned her way?
"S-Shh, Ginny!" he whispered urgently, nervously shifting his feet, and once again his eyes darted around the hallway. Some people were literally just standing and watching while others quickly scurried away. "If this is about Cho—"
"No, this isn'tabout Cho Chang!" Ginny shoved him solidly on the chest. She felt a flash of pleasure at the shocked expression on his face. "Let me help you get this straight. I left you. I was the one that didn't want you! Though I do think you could have had the plain decency not to jump her the moment I dumped your sorry arse last year!"
"Look," he hissed angrily, his usually pale face flushed with humiliation. "I think you should be grateful that I'm coming back to you at all!"
"Oh!" she laughed bitterly, shaking her head in disbelief. "Is that so?"
"Yes! Don't think I've forgotten last year! When we were together, don't think that I didn't know whom you were really thinking about! All those times we had together were never good enough for you, were they?"
"That's a lie," she retorted. She really had enjoyed being with him in the beginning. Her hand tightened dangerously over her wand.
"You probably never even liked me!"
"That's not true and you know it," she said, hurt ringing in her voice. He had been the first boy to notice her…to really like her. Of course she had had feelings for him—she had given him all that she could. He had not trusted her enough, and while in a way she didn't blame him, in another way that had hurt her more than she wanted to admit. He had always doubted her. And why was it that at this time and place, all she could think about was the one person that never had?
"Ha! What would have made you happier, Ginny? If I had a bloody scar on my face?"
"Don't," Ginny hissed warningly. The blood that was pounding against her head was boiling hotter and hotter. He had not just suggested what she thought he suggested.
"I bet when I was with you, who you thought about was really him!The one who was drooling over the girl that I have in the palm of my hand right now. The one who didn't even look at you. Harry stinking Potter," he spat viciously under his breath so that only she could hear.
Her wand was raised and the words were out of her mouth before she even thought about it.
"ARGGGG!" The people around jumped back as they witnessed the results of Ginny's infamous hex. Satisfaction roared through her as she watched as enormous bat bogeys flew from Michael's nose and brutally attacked him. He fell on his arse while blindly fighting them by clawing at them helplessly.
"Don't you dare say his name," Ginny said, her eyes blazing.
Then she turned and shoved past the bystanders. She fumed all the way down to the greenhouses for Herbology. The nerve of Michael! To say such things about Harry…! He never wanted a scar that marks the death of his parents! He never wanted to end up with horrible Muggles who hated and abused him horribly! He never wanted to grow up feeling like nobody could ever be capable of truly loving him! Hot tears burned her eyes.
Indeed, she was so wrapped up in her seething that she was jolted back into reality when she heard an unmistakable voice.
"…I'm sure the Gosenwobers or whatever you said are fascinating bird-eating plants, Neville. Sorry, I better go. I have a lot on my mind."
She watched in slow motion as a tall figure emerged from behind the high building and started heading toward her direction. His untidy black hair stuck out at various odd angles, his round black glasses slid slightly on his nose as he concentrated on a piece of parchment in his hand, and his teeth gnawed at his lower lip. Then, suddenly, he looked up and his brilliant green eyes looked straight at her. His thought-filled and pensive face suddenly broke out with a wide smile just for her.
Her heart lifted and clenched painfully at the same time.
Then the smile faded from Harry's face as he stepped closer. He quickly searched her for any injuries. "Ginny! You're – you're tearing up! What is it? What's wrong?"
The concern and worry behind his voice and the look in his emerald eyes were enough to make her cry. She sniffed and let out a watery laugh at the same time. Why did he have to care…? It always made her wish for more.
"I was just thinking about a certain Snitch-covered pair of boxers," she teased, wiping away a stray tear as she forced a smile. "Made me want to cry with laughter."
Harry looked a bit unconvinced, but relief flooded his body. His shoulders lost their built up tension as he smiled at her again. He gently smoothed her bangs away from her eyes.
"You promised not to mention that, silly."
"Yup, that's me," Ginny smiled, wiping another tear that had escaped from her eyes. "Silly Ginny. Silly, silly Ginny."
Naru-chan:What did you think? I know it's a bit sadder than A Matchless Match...but it seemed like it should be. Please review and tell me what you think!