Disclaimer: I own nothing except some of the plot. Harry Potter is not my property.

XXX

"Bodrod the Bearded was an extremely important part of the 11th Goblin War, insofar as his…" Professor Binns droned on. I nudged Lavender and pointed at Seamus and Dean. She glanced at them, then began giggling. The two were waving around a quill and arguing noiselessly.

"What are they doing?" she whispered loudly. They glanced around at us and motioned us to join them. After checking to se that Binns wasn't paying any attention, we stood up and tip-toed over, half crouched out of habit.

"Took you long enough!" Seamus half-whispered when we sat down at their table.

"Mr. O'Flaherty—" Binns began.

"It's Finnigan!" someone interrupted. The class laughed as one.

"Yes, yes, Finnigan, I am speaking!" he finished crossly.

"Well, that much is obvious." Dean muttered.

"Mr. Thompson!" Binns reprimanded. I snorted under my breath.

"Thomas!" The same voice as before rang out.

"Whatever! Do not interrupt my class again! As I was saying, Bodrod the Bearded met with Urg the Unclean in order to attempt to organize…"

"Merlin! I hate this class, he's so boring." Lav said, sighing.

"I know." Seamus quickly agreed. Dean and I exchanged a look and rolled our eyes. To the two of us, it was obvious that Lav and Seamus liked each other. They never did anything about it though, despite my many hints to Lav. I could only assume Dean hinted to Seamus in the same manner.

"So. What were you two doing?" I asked softly. Dean grinned, showing us the piece of parchment they'd been frantically scribbling on. I doubled up in giggles. It was Snape, wearing a pink dress and earring and staring at Moody longingly.

"We're gonna leave it in Potions later." Dean explained. "The poem is right here." I read it aloud to Lavender, giggling uncontrollably.

" 'My name is Snape, and I like guys/ especially ones with crazy eyes/ guys with normal eyes aren't for me/ because I'm in love with Mad-Eye Moody!/ I like to wear my dress at night/ but only until Moody's in sight/ then I change into my robes/ and hide all of my pretty clothes.' That's hilarious, guys!" I exclaimed loudly. Professor Binns paused to glare at us as the rest of the class giggled. "Oops." I said more quietly.

"That's all we got, though." Seamus said.

"Oh, but it's so funny!" Lav said instantly. Seamus blushed.

"So. Lav. D'you, um—" but the bell rang just as Dean and I looked hopefully at each other.

"Oh, well, see you at lunch, then." Lav said, sounding disappointed.

"Where're you going?" Dean asked curiously.

"McGonagall. She told us to come see her before lunch, we were goofing off in class." I told them, smirking.

"Well, we'd better go." Lav said, sighing.

"See you."

"See you." We left the History of Magic classroom and headed to the Transfiguration classroom. On the way, Lavender sighed repeatedly.

"Oh, ask him yourself then!" I finally burst out irritatedly, sick of her sighing. She looked very affronted.

"I don't know what you mean. Oh, there's McGonagall! What's she doing?" Lav said hurriedly.

"Very tactful change of subject." I said sarcastically. Then McGonagall came up to us, looking distracted.

"Girls, go on down to lunch. Never mind about class today." she said. "Oh, and make sure you're at the dancing lesson tonight. It's at 7:30 in the Great Hall tonight for any Gryffindors fourth year and up who wish to attend."

"Yes, Professor." we said together, and headed down to lunch.

"Let's sit with Seamus and Dean." Lav said.

"Yeah, I want to know what happened with the poem. But they're prob'ly with Neville, Ron, and Harry. And Hermione, too."

"Yeah, Neville's nice. Ron's an idiot, though." Lav said thoughtfully.

"I don't mind him or Harry." I shrugged.

"Hermione's okay, too. But she, like, never talks to anyone but Ron or Harry or Ginny Weasley. I heard her yesterday with Ginny. They both think we're ditzy." Lav said, sounding a bit angry.

"She can be nice, but she's kind of stuck up sometimes."

"Yeah, she's lucky, though. I mean, her best friend is practically in love with her."

"Ron, you mean? Yeah, well, that means you're lucky then too." I said, grinning when she blushed.

"Meaning Seamus? Yeah, right. Let's go. I'm starved."

XXX

"All right, all right, settle down. Settle down!" McGonagall shouted, back to her usual brusque self. I wondered why she'd been so distracted earlier. "Girls, sit in those chairs over there. Boys on that side of the room! Now. How many of you already know how to dance?" Several girls raised their hands, and one fifth or sixth year boy. His friends sniggered.

"I see we have a lot of work to do. Now. Stand up and find a partner." The entire group stood up, and couples began seeking each other out amidst catcalls and whoops and McGonagall shushing us. Lavender nudged my ribs.

"C'mon, let's go find Seamus and Dean. Better to embarrass ourselves in front of them than anyone else." she said. I nodded enthusiastically, and we went in search of our friends, finding them quickly enough.

"Hey guys, partners?" Lav asked.

"Yeah, sure!" Seamus agreed too quickly. "How 'bout…me and Lav, and Dean and Parvati."

"That sounds good!" Lav hastily agreed.

"Enough! I have given you sufficient time to find partners. Now then, stand face-to-face with your partner. Ladies, put one hand on your partner's shoulder and extend the other in order to hold his hand. Gentlemen, place one hand on your partner's waist and your other, holding her hand. No, Longbottom, the outstretched hand, not the one on your shoulder! Keep your held hands high by your shoulders. Weasley, both of you, why are you not partnered? Miss Johnson, you're late. Go with Weasley, I don't care which one. And the other one, you may demonstrate with me." Dean and I chuckled as George/Fred glared at Fred/George and slowly joined Professor McGonagall. "Miss Patil, Mr. Thomas, if you find this funny you may also be an example. We will begin. And one, two three, one, two three!" She began dragging George around (or was it Fred?), and we began swaying awkwardly. After a moment she let the twin go and began walking around correct people.

"Well. This is strangely awkward." Dean pointed out, grinning.

"Yeah, but at least Lav and Seamus are finally alone together sort of." I said, returning his infectious smile.

"Hopefully they won't step on each other's feet too much."

"Well, they shouldn't. After all, they're not as clumsy as you. Most people aren't." I teased.

"At least I've got a decent sense of humor."

"Yeah, but—"

"Miss Patil! Mr. Thomas! Please keep dancing!" McGonagall snapped at us irritably. When she walked away, we looked at each other and began laughing. When we finally quit cracking up, we looked over at Seamus and Lav. I didn't really care that we weren't dancing right; I wasn't planning on dancing at the Yule Ball anyway, seeing as I didn't have a date.

"They're cute together." I finally said to break the silence.

"Yeah. He really likes her."

"I know. She really likes him too."

"Yeah…So. Who're you going to the ball with?" Dean asked. My mind froze along with my feet and Dean stepped on me. I didn't care; Was he going to ask me? I'd die! We were supposed to just be friends. What if he thought I liked him? Then our friendship would be ruined!

"Parv? Um, you kind of stopped dancing without answering me."

"What? Oh. No one, yet." I muttered uncomfortably.

"Oh. That's too bad. Hope someone asks you soon. Can I, er, have some advice?" I sagged with relief at his words.

"Yeah, whatever."

"Uh…there's this girl I wanna ask to the ball. But she's a year below us. And she's a Ravenclaw and all. So, how do I ask her?" he asked quietly, looking nervous at the very thought.

"Well, first you'll have to tell me who it is. That'll help a bit."

"L-Luna Lovegood." he said, looking at our stationary feet.

"Really? That's sweet! Don't worry, I'm not gonna laugh. I'd suggest…go to her during, like, breakfast or something with some really bright flowers, or maybe a drawing. You're good at that sort of thing. Then just ask her to go with you."

"Seriously? That's it? Nothing hard or complicated?"

"Nah. She's not that type."

"Thanks so much! I'm glad we're friends." Dean said, relaxing visibly.

"Me, too." I said. My face eased into a smile.

"Miss Patil! Mister Thomas! Please keep dancing!"

Lav and Seamus looked over at us, grinning. Lav caught my eye, looking very excited and mouthing something at me. He asked me, it looked like. I grinned back at her.

"All right. You're all free to go for the day. We'll try again tomorrow." McGonagall said, sighing and rubbing her temples. The four of us met up and began walking towards Gryffindor Tower, but the boys split up at the path to the dungeons.

"Detention with Snape. He found the poem and picture." Dean grinned at my curious look. I shook my head, exasperated but amused.

"Not very good at hiding things, are you?" Lav said, grinning.

"Maybe it wasn't meant to be hidden! Well, anyway, see you tomorrow, Lav." Seamus said shyly.

"See you, Seamus." Lav replied softly. Dean and I once again rolled our eyes.

On our way back to the Common Room, Lav filled me on Seamus's invitation. I smiled and giggled at all the right times without paying much attention. To tell the truth, I was kind of jealous, really, that she'd been asked.

Then, as we walked through the portrait hole, Harry stood up and walked over, looking both nervous and desperate.

"Parvati? Will you go to the ball with me?" he asked. I looked at Lav and giggled harder than ever, feeling my face heat up.

"Yes, all right then." I finally said. Harry looked extremely relieved as well as a bit disappointed. It was obvious I wasn't his first choice.

"Thanks. Lavender—will you go with Ron?" he asked. We began giggling again, Lav blushing.

"She's going with Seamus." I managed to explain after a moment.

"Can't you think of anyone who'd go with Ron?" he mumbled, sighing.

"What about Hermione Granger?" I asked.

"She's going with someone else."

"Ooooh—who?" I asked, astonished. Not that she wasn't nice. She was even quite pretty, when she wasn't arguing with Ron. Just that she and Ron were perfect for each other.

"No idea." Harry said, shrugging. "So what about Ron?"

"Well…" I said, scouring my mind. Was Padma free? "I suppose my sister might…Padma, you know…in Ravenclaw. I'll ask her if you like."

"Yeah, that would be great. Let me know, will you?" I nodded, and he left, looking rather put out.

"Ooh, Parvati!" Lav teased.

"Yeah right. A date's a date, hey?" I said half-heartedly.

"I guess…so anyway. I wonder who Hermione's going with?" she wondered aloud.

"I dunno…maybe Neville?"

"No, she turned him down. Ginny Weasley's going with him."

"Oh, really? Poor girl."

"I know. I heard she's only going with him so she can go at all. Well, I'm off to bed, Lav."

"But it's only nine."

"I'm just tired is all. Really, Lav."

"Fine. I'll wait up for Seamus then. I mean, and Dean."

"Yeah, okay. Give Seamus a kiss."

"Hey!" Lavender tossed a pillow at me and I ducked on my way to the stairs.

"Night, Lav!" I called over my shoulder.

"G'night." I heard.

I walked up to our dormitory and changed, laying down on my four poster dejectedly. I rolled over and sighed.

"Parvati?" I jumped, then realized who it was.

"Hermione?"

"Well, yes. Um…if I tell you something, will you not tell anyone? Even Lavender?"

"Yeah, sure. What?" My curiousity was roused now.

`"I'm going to the Yule Ball…with Viktor Krum! I just had to tell someone other than Ginny. He asked me yesterday!" She sounded breathless. I rolled over to face her.

"Really? That's so cool, Hermione! He's 18, y'know!"

"I know, I'm so excited. He's really sweet…"

"Wow! Ooh, can I help you get ready on Christmas?"

"Well…okay. I really want to look pretty for once, you know what I mean? Instead of like…well, like me."

"You are pretty, Hermione. But anyway. We could do your hair up…I have some Sleekeazy's Hair Potion in my trunk I think, and I could do your make-up…"

"Yes, alright, but I want my robes to be a surprise. Oh, I'm so excited!" she repeated. I smiled for her in the dark, but then frowned for me.

"Me too, even though I'm stuck with Harry." I admitted.

"He's not so bad." she defended loyally. I snorted.

"Would you go to a ball with him or try to dance?"

"Well, I guess not." admitted Hermione, actually giggling.

"Exactly! Well, g'night."

"Good night." I lay there in the darkness, listening. Now I was excited and couldn't sleep. I also couldn't get over how un-Hermione-ish Hermione had been acting. Giggling and everything! Eventually her breathing evened out and footsteps told me Lavender was coming. She tapped me, but I feigned slumber. I didn't want to say it, but I was jealous of both Hermione and Lavender. They were glad with their dates.

But then, I was going with the Harry Potter. Cute, famous, and he'd asked me, even though it was a last-ditch effort. I smiled into the dark room, closing my eyes to dreams of flowers, kisses, and romantic dancing.

XXX

A/N: Sorry if there's any grammar mistakes; my computer can't deal with the editing page, so I edit in Word and I don't know if anything will get messed up in the uploading process. Read and Review, please!