(Archer, Alana, Evelyn, Regan, Kathryn, DT, Sierra, and A)
Disclaimer- Based off the works of JK Rowling, all that she rightfully owns, belongs to her. The rest is ours, ours, ours!
Chapter One: The Touch
"Ron!" Ginny called, jumping up on her tippy toes at the attempt of grabbing an out of reach book. When there was no response from her call, she tried louder, "Ron!"
"What Ginny?" Ron responded finally, turning away from his good friend, Harry Potter. They were both looking intently at the new Quidditch Historic Players which Ginny, unwisely, had stumbled upon.
"Get that book up there for me," Ginny said finally, pointing up at the top bookshelf where a thick book sat just out of reach from the short red haired girl. Ron sighed and rolled his eyes before walking quickly over to where she stood and pulled the book from the shelf. He handed it to her not a bit gently before hurrying back to Harry and the book. Ginny rolled her eyes at his retreating back before placing the new book on the stack of the ones she had.
She was moving on to her fifth year, as Ron, Harry, and Hermione were going to their sixth. As the books were being purchased she glanced back at where the two boys sat, enthralled. A light blush flushed her face when the shopkeeper had to raise his voice to get her attention. Taking her books and putting them into her bag she rushed over to where Hermione sat elbow deep into books.
"Simply fascinating how those boys are so interested in that sport," Hermione commented when Ginny rushed up to her.
"Disturbing as well," Ginny grinned. Hermione smiled at her agreement and went back to the book she was reading, leaving Ginny with her books, and the leftover money her Mum and Dad had given her. Deciding to go to Florean Rortescue's Ice Cream Parlor and get herself something while she waited for the others to finish up. As she walked out the door, her eyes lingered on Harry briefly, before focusing on ahead of her.
Of course when she was good distance away the mental scolding began. Ginny, why stare at the boy if he obviously seems to absolutely show no signs of liking you. And of course the wishful, loyal part of her would respond, He's a boy, and they're very slow at these things. Give him time.
"He's had nearly five years," she said softly out loud. She stopped walking in the middle of the crowded sidewalk when those words left her mouth. People continued pushing past her, some giving her dirty looks, but she didn't notice them. Nearly five years of her life she's followed Harry around, doing anything to get him to notice her. Was Harry really that clueless, or was he seriously not interested in her? That loyal part kicked in, whispering to her promises and rewards for patience. Ginny, satisfied with what she thought, continued on to the Parlor.
"Will it be all that bad this year?" Ginny asked Hermione at the breakfast table, a few weeks later. She was talking of her Care of Magical Creatures class, which Hagrid had continued teaching after his 'secret mission'. The year before, a short, smell man had taught the class, and did it horribly. He was named 'Mini Snape' by all but the Slytherins, who had an unsurprising affinity to him. They only called him that when he wasn't within hearing distance though, Mini Snape was vicious, and not at all light on punishment. Or homework for that manner.
"I don't think it will be all that bad this year," Hermione said, setting her thick Muggle Studies book to take a bite of the bacon on her plate. "Hagrid is back."
Ginny winced, causing Hermione to laugh. "He's not that bad!" she chuckled.
"His classes are always interesting," Ginny admitted, "Not safe, but interesting."
Hermione smiled and looked over at Harry and Ron. Even after getting their schoolbooks, and going through the first few weeks of school, the boys were still looking over the book.
"You haven't finished it yet?" Hermione asked with a snort.
Ron looked up indignantly, "We've finished it,"
"Then what are you still looking at it for?"
"Does it matter? We've finished it, just because we're not done looking at it doesn't mean we haven't finished reading it." Ron said.
"You've been looking at it rather long, what's so interesting about it anyway?" Hermione asked, leaning over the table to look at the book. Pictures of famous Quidditch players, some in color and others in black and white zoomed in and out of scenes.
Ginny lost interest at this point, and looked around the Hall. The Ravenclaw table had almost every student sitting there, nothing very interesting seemed to be happening.
Turning in her seat, she noticed the Hufflepuff table was practically empty as well as the Slytherin. Actually, four people were sitting at the Slytherin table. Jillian Derricks, who was in Ginny's year, one large girl, who she recognized as Pansy. The other three were almost being blocked by Pansy's bulk. She could make out what looked like Crabbe and Goyle, so undoubtedly, Malfoy must be near by.
Hermione sitting down heavily beside her made Ginny turn around away from the Slytherin's. In Hermione's hands was Quidditch Historic Players, and across the table was a protesting Harry and Ron. "I will not give it back until I actually see you two do your homework. You lost us nearly 30 points in Potions the other day-" she heard Hermione start. Ginny rolled her eyes and stood up.
"Give it to me now Hermione," Harry's voice said.
The Hall was beginning to empty, since the first class of the day would be beginning soon. Hermione, Harry, and Ron were the only ones still sitting, oblivious to the emptying Hall.
"Hermione," Ginny called, purposely avoiding Harry's look. She felt her face beginning to heat up so she quickly finished what she was saying. "Class is about to start, and I still need my ink."
Hermione stared blankly at her for a moment, before what the younger girl said dawned her. She sprang from her seat and shoved Quidditch Historic Players into her bookbag, ignoring the new stream of protests from the boys, and brought out an inkbottle.
"I'm sorry to have kept you waiting Ginny," Hermione said, she gestured to the boys beside her, which explained it all.
"I'll see you later then." Ginny smiled, and before turning around to leave the Hall, she snuck a quick glance at Harry. She heard their voices raise as she left the room, but a sort of goofy smile was on her face. So deep into her thoughts, she didn't even realize she ran into someone until she found herself on the ground, the inkbottle broken on the floor next to her. The ebony color oozed slowly across the white marble floor, and to her dismay she found a few blots on her robes and her arm.
"Watch where you're going, Weasley." she heard a very unwanted and familiar voice say from above her.
"Why don't you?" Ginny said, growing angry as she rubbed at the ink spots on her arm. The rubbing only succeeded in making the spot larger and smudged.
"You ran into me, Weasley." Draco Malfoy pointed out, not making a move to leave or help her up.
"What were you doing standing in front of a doorway anyway?" Ginny snapped, pushing herself to her feet.
"I can stand wherever I want to," Draco said lazily.
Ginny, having no retort to this, just huffed furiously and bent down to pick up broken pieces of her bottle. Her mind raced as she thought of something spiteful to say to him, "You broke my ink bottle."
"I can see that Weasley."
"I need a new one. That was the only one I had with me."
"You can only afford one?" Draco smirked.
"No," Ginny gritted out straightening and facing him. "I mean, I only have one with me, which is the one you broke. I don't want to run all the way up to my room to get a new ink bottle."
"That's not my problem."
Ginny stiffened. "Fine," she said shortly, she dropped the broken bottle at Draco's feet. "Never mind," She turned, picking up her bag from the floor, and began to move towards the door to outside when someone grabbed her wrist. Instinctively, she jerked her hand back, but whoever had hold of it, didn't let go. She turned, and stared at the hand.
Draco Malfoy's hand.
And in it was an inkbottle.
Speechless, Ginny took the bottle and his hand jerked away. She looked up at his pale gray eyes, with wonderment.
"Thank you," she managed.
Something in his eyes changed. They grew hard, as well as his face. "I don't need your thanks, the last thing I need is to owe a Weasley anything. Watch where you're going next time." he snapped before turning and walking in the opposite direction.
Ginny watched him go, hurt. When he turned the corner, out of sight, she looked down at the inkbottle. With a shake of her head, she stuffed it in her bag and rushed out to Hagrid's class.
"Very old and powerful magic," Hagrid said, petting what looked like and oversized jaguar. In fact, it was a very large black cat; a white square on the cat's forehead was the unique thing about it along with her round, gold eyes that gazed intelligently at the students. "She's not mine ter keep, but a friend er mine keeps her as a companion. I thought she'd be nice fer you kids to get a look at. You can pet her, be careful of touching the square there."
Most of the students shifted where they stood uneasily. They knew Hagrid's concept on harmless animals. Magical and powerful ones were not ones to be messed with either. Ginny looked around at her classmates quickly. Seeing no one volunteering she sighed, and stepped foreword.
The cat let out a sound her dad's flying car would make when it ran. She continued petting it lightly on the head as the other students, emboldened by her approach, began to pet it. As the students did so Hagrid continued talking.
"This cat was used ter bond enemies together. In ancient times, she had the ability ter speak, so she could talk to the people who used her. She was most famous fer bringing together two blood feuding families Teirinicha and Alaneb's."
Ginny listened to this, and continued petting the cat's head. Her mind drifted briefly to that morning's breakfast and Hermione's capturing of the book, then to the incident outside the Hall.
That stupid git, Ginny thought furiously, petting a bit harder without realizing it. Why does he have to be so arrogant and rude. But he did give her an inkbottle, at her request...but the words he said after, they actually hurt her.
'I don't need your thanks, the last thing I need is to owe a Weasley anything...'
Ginny bit her lip. Malfoy's other insults, like their money problems, and anything else he had to say never really bothered her. Not as much as it did her brother. Of course Malfoy had never really said anything to her face, not with that emotion. That's why it must bother Ron so much, Ginny thought. To hear such venom and hatred in someone's voice is hurtful...especially over a simple debt.
But as Ginny thought this, she had gazed off past the powerful black cat. She did not notice the cat's interested and amused gaze on her face. Nor the slight glow that seemed to be coming from the white square on its forehead. She did notice when she felt a strong tug on her right wrist, and the feeling of what felt like string.
Surprised, she looked down at her wrist. Nothing was wrapped around it. Raising her hand up to the sunlight, she twisted it around slightly, checking for anything that could have gotten caught. Great my robes are probably fraying, and they're only a year old, she thought. Then she saw it.
It was almost unnoticeable, but she saw it. Wrapped loosely, yet firmly around her wrist, was a silvery, translucent, very thin thread. Ginny's eyes widened, and she opened her mouth to say something to one of her classmates. The cat moved, and Ginny looked to her, the call of surprise dying in her throat. The cat was grinning.
A jerk on the thread made her stumble foreword, causing several people to look over at her. Confused, Ginny tugged at the string. It felt loose, she didn't understand why it had tugged on her. Another jerk pulled her foreword five steps, catching everyone's attention in the class including Hagrids.
"Something wrong Ginny?" Hagrid called.
"I-I..." Ginny stuttered. She turned and held up her wrist. "Something's pulling me."
"What?" Hagrid asked.
He was answered by Ginny's surprised shriek as she began to be pulled away from her class rapidly. She was running to keep up with the pull, and it was heading in the direction of the castle. The sound of shouts and running feet behind her told her entire Care of Magical Creatures class was chasing after her.
Draco was furious with himself as he walked away from the Weasley girl and his inkbottle. His father would be furious if he'd known he'd given an expensive bottle of ink to the muggle loving fools' daughter. He was surprised himself when he pulled it from his bag, and he hadn't meant to grab her, just call out and toss it to her.
But somehow, he found himself grabbing her wrist.
And he didn't let go immediately, by Merlin! Draco sighed disgusted with himself as he sat down in Professor Binns class. It wasn't hard to be distracted in that class. Everyone was either catching up on their sleep, talking, or off in their own world. Crabbe and Goyle especially enjoyed the last option. Draco often had to hit them both upside their heads with his heavy History book to get them back to the present.
But today he wasn't distracted by Pansy's sad attempt of flirting with him, or when Millicent began her arm wrestling contest when Binns wasn't looking. His mind kept wandering back to the Weasley girl, and how she had looked at him after he'd told her off. She'd looked hurt, an expression he usually strove for, and often got when he picked on Granger and on rare occasions Potter's sidekick Weasley. But her look...didn't give him as much satisfaction as the others did.
Of course he'd never really had to pick on the Weasley girl. She was Potter's shadow, which annoyed him greatly. She shadowed after Potter and his two friends, silently, and was rarely including in anything they ever talked about, from what he saw. Any conversation with her was brief, if there was one at all, and she seemed to like it. That irked him. She liked being his shadow, and being ignored.
Draco scowled at the thought, and Pansy who had been crooning in front of him, frowned and turned around. This caused him smile, now he wouldn't have to look at face during the entire class. Stupid Weasley, he thought to himself, and dismissed her from his mind.
For about a good fifteen minutes, he was working himself into a sleepy stupor, until what felt like a light tug on his wrist woke him up. "Don't Pansy," he hissed immediately.
Pansy turned around immediately at the sound of her name. "What is it Draco?" she asked, what she thought was sweetly.
Draco stared at her hard, wondering if she was pretending she didn't touch him. "Did you just grab my hand?"
Pansy shook her head, a hopeful look crossing her face. Draco could read her thoughts as though she had said them.
"I don't want you to hold my hand. Don't touch me." he said, drawing his hand off of the desk, away from her.
Pansy jutted out her lower lip in a pout, and faced the front with a flip of her hair. Draco ignored her.
When nothing happened after a few more moments, he relaxed again, and closed his eyes, when the tug at his wrist became a jerk. Causing
his chair to slide sideways loudly.
Professor Binns stopped talking immediately, and the entire class went still as they looked at Draco.
"Do you have something to share with us, Mr. Malfoy?" Professor Binns asked, in his droning voice.
"No," Draco responded, looking closely at his right wrist. Was it him or did he see something shimmer?
"Then move your chair back to your desk and we can continue the class." the Professor said, almost unheard as Draco still carefully studied
As he began to move his chair, the jerk came again, this time pulling him to his feet and practically dragging him to the door.
"Where do you think your going, Mr. Malfoy?" Professor Binns asked.
Draco didn't answer, though his mouth was open in surprise as he was by some unknown force pulled from the classroom, and down the hallway.
She halted right outside the Great Hall doors, where the ink spill was still on the floor. Ginny looked down at it guiltily. Maybe it was one of Filch's spells to find out who made the mess. She looked up at the sound of hurried footsteps, expecting to see Filch's scowling face. Instead, she saw Malfoy's surprised look, as he drew to a halt about six paces away from her.
"What," Draco asked, looking from her to the ink spill. "Am I doing here again?"
"I don't know," Ginny said, looking past him for a sign of a teacher or Filch. "I thought it was Filch using a spell to find out who made this mess." she pointed to the spill.
"That was your fault Weasley, I thought we covered this."
"Malfoy," Ginny snapped, irritably. "You were part of it, you knocked me over, that'd explain why you're here! If you have a better theory please, by all means enlighten me."
Draco scowled as she crossed her arms and looked at him expectantly. He had no idea why he was pulled or summoned here, and she knew it. "I don't see Filch, or any teacher for that fact. I don't think Professor Binns would go after me, since I for some reason just got up and practically ran out of his class."
"Something I'd love to do," Ginny said.
Draco looked at her, "Whose class were you in?"
Ginny didn't have to answer, because right at that moment, the entrance was flooded with kids from her class, and Hagrid was hurrying toward them looking worried.
Ginny thought she heard Malfoy mutter something about a great big git, but Hagrid's worried questions made her dismiss it. "I'm fine," she said, interrupting his streams of questions. "I think me and Malfoy here were summoned because of this little mess we made earlier. Nothing big."
"Oh," Hagrid said looking very relieved that she wasn't hurt. He looked up and began looking around the hallway. "Who summoned you?"
"We...don't know." Ginny said, looking over at Malfoy to see if he knew.
Draco just gave her a blank look, a sneer on his face when Hagrid regarded him.
"Hagrid!" McGonagall's voice cried from the stairwell. Everyone in the hall turned when the Professor walked in. McGonagall slowed to a walk when she saw all of Hagrid's students standing behind him. Looking at Draco she narrowed her eyes, "Professor Binns had to interrupt my class to inform me of you're little disappearance. Unfortunately, your Head of your house is a bit too far away to reach for him, so I guess I will have to deal with it."
Draco looked nonplussed.
"Professor," Ginny said, causing Professor McGonagall to look at her. "I thought we were summoned because of that."
McGonagall's look turned to one of surprise when she noticed the spill. "You two did this?"
"Yes, before class. It was an accident, and well we were in the middle of the class when we- well I was just pulled by something to here." Ginny explained quickly. "Were you pulled here as well Malfoy?"
Draco looked as though he weren't going to answer her. But at McGonagall's accusing glare he nodded slowly, his face going blank.
"Well then, what are you saying?" Professor McGonagall asked Ginny.
"I...We thought we were summoned because of the mess. You see you came in as we were trying to figure out who did summon us and our first guess was Filch...but..." Ginny trailed off, her eyes wandering around the room.
McGonagall was looking from the ink spill on the floor to Ginny to Hagrid. "Hagrid, may I speak with you for one moment?" she asked finally.
"Yes ma'am." Hagrid said, following McGonagall into the Hall.
Ginny looked after them as they began to whisper furiously to one another; she looked over to Draco, who didn't seem to care.
Draco was confused, but he wouldn't show that to any of the muggle loving fools who discussed what happened in front of him. He withdrew his thoughts to himself, leaving his face unreadable and hard. When Ginny had pointed out her theory, he was immensely relieved that it was perhaps nothing but a fit about some spilled ink. Though when no one stepped up to summoning them, he began to doubt her theory.
He totally lost hope of it when Professor McGonagall showed up.
Draco ignored Ginny when she looked over at him, her eyes wide, a bit frightened, but mostly confused. What did she expect him to do? Explain what was happening when he didn't even know what was going on?
She looked away again, figuring she wouldn't get a response from him anytime soon. Stupid girl, Draco thought, looking to the spill on the floor angrily. It has to do something with the ink. She should've just cleaned it up. And what in the bloody hell are McGonagall and the stupid giant talking about? It's only a bit of ink and their having a discussion over it.
Hagrid then rushed away from McGonagall and out the doors. Ginny, Draco, and his class stared after him with confusion.
"Everyone in Hagrid's class please go back out there and wait for your teacher to begin the lesson again. Go on. Except you Ginny." Professor McGonagall said.
With reluctance the class left them, and trooped back to the hut, where Hagrid was coming back from, the black cat walking beside him.
When the entire hall was cleared from students, the silence remained until Hagrid reached them. The black cat sat down beside him, it's gold eye looking right to Ginny's dark ones.
Ginny shivered when they met hers, and she looked to McGonagall to see what this was about.
"The black cat, is that Aoria, Hagrid?" she asked.
"Yep," Hagrid nodded to the Professor. He looked a bit proud. "Me friend lent er to me just for my classes."
"Hagrid," Professor McGonagall began again, she looked paler than usual. "Do you know the legend of Aoria. What she's done?"
"It has been done." another voice joined in suddenly, causing everyone to jump. It was a low, mystical sort of voice, which seemed to echo in the room; each turned around in confusion.
"The cat!" Ginny cried, pointing to her.
"Two enemies bound," the voice said again, though the Aoria's mouth never moved, it echoed in the room and in their heads. "That cannot be broken."
"Bound?" Draco exclaimed, he looked at his wrist that had tugged him out of the classroom.
"Until peace between two, become allies or love, the bonding together will then dissolve." Aoria finished.
"Bound," Ginny said softly, she looked down at her wrist and felt around it. Just barely she could feel the small thread on her wrist. "Malfoy, check your wrist."
Draco looked at her, not moving. With a frustrated sigh she hurried over to him and grabbed him by the wrist. She ran her finger around his wrist, feeling the identical string wrapped around his as well. "Professor, we have some sort of string attached to our wrists..." Ginny said, releasing Draco's hand.
Professor McGonagall strode over and took Ginny's wrist into her hand and looked. After a moment she felt around it, then shook her head. "There's nothing there, Ginny."
"What?" Ginny asked, she looked down moving her wrist about to make the thread glimmer. "Don't you see it? If I move it in the light it shimmers."
McGonagall peered at her wrist again and shook her head again. "I don't see anything," she moved over and inspected Draco's wrists. "Nothing on Draco either."
"Malfoy, do you see it?" Ginny asked, almost frantically.
Draco looked at her coolly, almost considering saying no, but then Professor McGonagall was still there watching him carefully. He nodded shortly, but said nothing.
"What does it mean?" Ginny asked raising her arm to see if any other string attached to it. She couldn't see anything or feel another string, she looked at Aoria for help.
Aoria had moved to sitting on her stomach, and was looking very pleased with the entire situation.
"Is there any way to...unbind them, Aoria?" McGonagall asked slowly.
Aoria tilted her head slightly, her wise gold eyes looking at McGonagall carefully. "Until peace between two, become allies or love, the bonding together will then dissolve." she repeated.
"Yes I know this, but they can't be bound together. Their parents will be furious, and what's more, how could we take care of them if they are bound together?"
Aoria didn't answer, just stared.
"Hagrid, please get Dumbledore." Professor McGonagall said finally.