A/N This is an AU story taking place in Harry's sixth year. Did you ever wonder were the Mirror of Erised ended up after the finale of the Philosopher's Stone. Here's the answer. The plot is loosely based on the Deep Space 9 episode "If Wishes Were Horses". Beta is ghostchicken, thank you for your great job! As always Harry Potter is JKR's yard and I'm only here to play.
Chapter 1 - The Broken Mirror
Professor Dumbledore made a wrong turn and found himself in a corridor he hadn't set foot on in several years. I haven't seen this part of the castle since I moved the Mirror of Erised here after that business with the stone. He had stored the mirror in a magically-sealed hidden compartment behind a broom closet. He had found said compartment on accident as a student during a rather forgettable snog in that very closet.
It was the snogging that was the real accident in the first place, because the hidden compartment was a brilliant hiding place. Unfortunately, the Hufflepuff girl he'd snogged proceeded to spread a nasty rumour that he was a bad kisser. As a result, he hadn't been able to convince another girl to join him for a snog for the rest of that term. As I'm here, I might as well check the wards concealing the mirror. They've very likely weakened over the years with all the magical interference going on all over the castle. A few diagnostic waves of his wand confirmed his suspicions. The wards had all but vanished.
Professor Dumbledore decided he'd better move the mirror to a new hiding place. But where? If he'd been a Parslemouth, he could have taken it into the Chamber of Secrets, but without that option, also knowing that too many students knew of the Room of Requirement, he decided the best place might be the attic in the North Tower, a few floors above Professor Trelawney's classroom. No one ever ventured up there, and with a few extra wards in place, the Mirror of Erised should be safe.
Professor Dumbledore grunted from exhaustion. Still sharp at over one hundred fifty years old, age had long ago begun to take its toll on his body. "And they say you're a wise wizard." he huffed to himself, carrying the heavy mirror up towards the top of the North Tower.
"Choosing one of the most remote places is one thing, Albus," he growled to himself. "But at your age, dragging this accursed thing all the way up there on your own could hardly be construed as wise! What were you thinking, old boy?"
Professor Dumbledore was indeed wise, at least wise enough not to attempt to cast any levitation or shrinking spells on the Mirror of Erised. Such a powerful magical object might not agree with the spell and the result might be disastrous. Still, the headmaster questioned his senses for choosing this particular hiding place. Finally reaching the top of the staircase, he glared at the ladder leading up to the attic while he caught his breath. Now this might be a problem. Professor Dumbledore pondered carefully the best method to hoist the mirror through the opening in the ceiling into the attic.
Ah, yes, of course. That should do it. Man, you did pay attention in Muggle studies after all. Professor Dumbledore chuckled and inspected the block and tackle he'd conjured and attached to the ceiling with a strong sticking charm. Very pleased with himself, he conjured a rope sling around the relic, attached it to the hook and ring, and then began hoisting the Mirror of Erised upwards.
Blimey, it's lucky for me no one's about. Even though I have a perfectly valid explanation as to why I don't levitate this ruddy thing, the bugger would ignore it in favour of taking the Mickey out of me instead. Sweat beaded on his creased brow and dripped down his face as he heaved on the rope. A single drop clung to the end of his long nose and then fell onto his violent purple robes. All at once, his progress was halted. Now what?
He gazed upward and immediately discovered now what. He'd forgotten to check for something rather important—that the opening was large enough to fit the mirror through.
Bollocks. This is embarrassing. Just then, he heard someone ascending the stairs. And of course someone just has to be coming up here... Maybe if I... Professor Dumbledore held on tight to the ropes with one hand and reached for his wand with the other in order to enlarge the opening and quickly finish the job. Now, trying to get hold of his wand with his injured hand proved difficult, and as he finally drew it from his robes, he fumbled and dropped it.
"Bugger," he had time to yell as he let go the rope and dove for the wand. It was then that he realised the person on the stairs heard him clearly.
"Who's there," Argus Filch called. "Show yourself!"
Oh, for all the... The headmaster, with a sudden display of agility, threw himself out of harm's way as the great mirror plummeted downward. The Mirror of Erised crashed to the floor and fell, naturally, not into the corridor but down the stairs, making a spectacular racket. Professor Dumbledore snatched up his wand and reacted out of reflex, throwing a Protego and a cushioning charm in rapid succession in a futile attempt to save the mirror.
"PEEVES! I'll get you for this," Filch's howled.
"Merlin's monkey-wrench," professor Dumbledore shrieked as he watched the unique Mirror of Erised, the presumably long-lost Mirror of Erised, a priceless and legendary magical object, fall uncontrollably down the stairs of the North Tower, struck by two spells that may or may not have caused a magical backlash. On the other hand, if the mirror were to be destroyed, there was no telling what the powerful magic imbued into it might do.
Professor Dumbledore's mood crashed with the mirror, but what really worried him was the low-pitched squeaky sound following the crash that was not dissimilar to a giant crying out his pain after dropping a rock on his foot. Professor Dumbledore feared the worst and in the next moment he felt a shudder in the castle itself. His face lost all colour and his stomach turned as he suspected he'd turned the long-lost Mirror of Erised into the forever-lost Mirror of Erised.
"ARE YOU TRYING TO KILL ME PEEVES," Filch shouted at the top of his lungs.
"Bugger! Bugger, bugger, bugger," Professor Dumbledore swore as he cast disillusionment and silencing charms on himself in order to sneak past the barking-mad Squib heading towards what he assumed was Peeves. Professor Dumbledore didn't have the time right now to deal with the escalation of the war between the caretaker and the poltergeist he had caused.
But right now, he had greater issues to attend to. What was that shudder? Invisible and silent, he headed down the stairs past an outraged Filch. Further down, he found an area where the walls and stair was dirty and black with soot and scorch marks, obviously the spot where the mirror had been destroyed. The mirror itself seemed to have been totally obliterated from existence.
"Bugger me," a shocked professor Dumbledore grumbled and cast a detection charm in hopes of discovering what magic might be at work.
His wand became burning hot and he had to throw it away to break the spell. Whatever had happened was powerful. "Bugger." Picking up his wand, he headed for his office with a heavy heart and equally heavy steps. He met Sir Nicholas on the way.
"Greetings, Headmaster," the ghost said cheerfully in his hollow ghostly way.
"Bugger," Professor Dumbledore said again, not having noticed the gob-smacked ghost.
Harry awoke the next morning after a pleasant dream, but a dream that made him blush. He'd been in the Astronomy Tower with a girl, engaged in a very healthy snog. Suddenly, the realisation that the girl he was snogging was Ginny Weasley hit him like a tonne of bricks. A battle in his mind raged as his alter ego in the dream unbuttoned Ginny's blouse, exposing the milk-white roundness of her breasts. He was torn between waking up, and the desire to...
She's Ron's little sister. I do not dream about ripping Ginny's blouse off and snogging her senseless. Her brothers would kill me! Harry berated himself for his errant subconscious deviance, but another voice in his mind stepped to the fore with the undeniable truth. Face it, Potter—that's exactly what you dreamed about and not for the first time. Harry sighed. Yes, he had dreamed of snogging Ginny senseless and ripping her blouse off once or twice, but now he was awake. In the Real World.
Yes, that's right. In the real world, Ginny's dating Dean Thomas, and I think girls are more trouble than they're worth. Harry Potter held all females in the highest regard as his noble nature would allow nothing less, but his less-than-successful—correction, disastrous—date with Cho Chang last Valentine's Day soured him on the viability of lasting and meaningful relationships with them, other than his friendship with Hermione, who after all was a girl. But girls are irresistibly cute, especially Ginny... Stop it, Potter!
Harry quickly dressed and headed down the stairs to the common room, finding it empty except for Ginny. And there she is. "Good morning, Ginny. Waiting for Dean? He's still sleeping..."
"No, Harry," she purred. "I was waiting for you, as I have done all my life."
What!? He noticed Ginny's blouse was unbuttoned at least one button beyond dignity and her skirt appeared shorter than usual. "Er... Ginny... are you all right?"
"Never better...now that you're here... Harry," Ginny said seductively as she walked toward him, her eyes blazing. Harry gasped as she reached him and slid her arms around his neck. He felt inexplicably drawn to her and slightly intoxicated in a wonderful way by that fruity-flowery scent that was all Ginny.
"Ginny, erm...what about Dean," Harry asked. She's Ron's sister...Ron's very cute sister... she's Ginny...and Ginny's so...beautiful.
"What about him? I never loved him. It's over. I want you. Harry. I've always wanted you," Ginny whispered and moments later, the little resistance Harry had was crumbling, desire taking control of his actions. He lowered his head and he kissed her, wrapping his arms around her and pulling her close to him.
Harry and Ginny snogged each other for a few minutes before breaking apart. Harry realised that in the real world, it was Ginny who snogged him senseless rather than the other way around. "We..." Harry started. "I... was on my way to breakfast. Care to join me?" Harry cursed himself for coming up with something like that after sharing that intense snog, but his brain wasn't functioning properly, still processing the emotions stirred up by Ginny's kisses.
"I'd love to," she said, gazing into his emerald eyes.
"Um...Ginny...that was...the kissing I mean...wonderful," Harry said.
"It was..." Ginny said taking Harry's hand and leading him across the room to the portrait hole.
Professor Dumbledore watched the students in the Great Hall from his place at the staff table. Everything appeared normal. Dumbledore sighed in relief. That entire business in the North Tower yesterday could have meant disaster. But then his attention fell upon the Gryffindor table where Harry Potter seemed to be enjoying a suspiciously romantic breakfast with Ginevra Weasley.
"Wasn't she dating young Mr Thomas? Not matter, no matter. This is brilliant. Professor Dumbledore chuckled to himself at the prospect of his protégé becoming involved with the only daughter of the staunchest Light family in Britain. Aside from that, he took great interest in keeping track of who dated who because of a private betting pool with Filius Flitwick. Concerning Harry, Professor Dumbledore had placed his money on Ginny, while Flitwick had wagered for Miss Granger to enter a relationship with him.
The stakes amounted to little more than a couple of Sickles, but Professor Dumbledore was more concerned with outsmarting the Ravenclaw Head, although a Potter-Weasley pairing would be beneficial to the Light as well as to Harry himself. Ginevra was a strong and talented witch whose power, if joined with Harry's, could make them virtually unstoppable in their fight against Voldemort.
Dumbledore was already thinking about how he would approach the Charms professor and get him to admit his defeat and cough up the very prestigious Sickle. His smug smile faded when Dean Thomas entered the Great Hall. Well, to be perfectly honest it wasn't Mr Thomas' appearance that shattered the headmaster's grand plans, but the girl in his company, holding his hand—Ginevra Weasley! His jaw dropped. Professor Dumbledore stared at Harry, still seated at the Gryffindor table and still engaged in a very romantic breakfast with...Ginevra Weasley.
"Bugger..." the professor muttered, making a hypothesis that the two Ginevra Weasleys currently in the Great Hall could only be explained by some powerful magic gone awry—say, a priceless enchanted mirror struck by spells as it fell down a staircase, releasing some magical outburst strong enough to send a shudder through Hogwarts. "Bugger!"