"Wake up!"

Ron turned to his side and placed a pillow over his ear, trying to shut out the hissing voice that was disturbing his beauty sleep.

"Ron!" The voice became shriller, and Ron recognized it as Hermione's.

He groaned and rolled out onto his back so that he could see her. When he got enough energy to open his eyes. "Hermione?" he asked stupidly, not understanding. "What are you doing in my room?"

"I Apparated over," Hermione said in a rush. "But never mind that. We've got an *emergency* on our hands here!"

Ron groaned. "This better not be like the time you dragged me to Professor Dumbledore to demand we have final exams, right?"

Her response was hitting him with a pillow.

Ron finally opened his eyes, glaring at her. Before she knew what hit her, he jumped up off the bed and tackled her, pinning her beneath him on the edge of the bed. He reached for the pillow and began to hit her repeatedly with it. Ron had really matured since his days at Hogwarts.

"Ow! Ron! Stop!" Hermione screeched. He held tightly to her wrists, but he didn't let go. That is, until she used her nails to dig into his skin very, very painfully.

"Bloody *hell*, Hermione!" Ron yelled, pulling off of her to nurse his wound.

Hermione didn't answer. She thrust a newspaper in his face. He took it from her and held it at a point where he could actually read. "Yesterday afternoon, a beautiful wedding took place. The bride and groom, Lavender Brown-Finnigan and Seamus Finnigan, had just recited their vows when an explosion took place . . ." Ron trailed off, reading in his head as fast as he could. He felt the color drain from his face with each passing word. When he finally finished, he looked up at Hermione with wide eyes. "We can't let my mum see this."

"It's everywhere," Hermione said quietly. "I heard it on the Wizarding Wireless when I woke up this morning." She shook her head sadly. "England is in an uproar. People all over the place are trying to get away, wanting to leave for America or Canada before Voldemort attacks us again."

"But Voldemort *is* dead, right?" Ron asked, stroking his chin slightly as he thought. "I mean, Harry may be daft, but he would tell us if something that dangerous had happened."

" *I* know that, and *you* know that," Hermione said. She gestured to the paper. "But these people don't. If I could get my hands on Parvati I'd . . ."

"Agreed," Ron said quickly before she could finish. He didn't like seeing Hermione threatening people. She might just go through with it. He put a hand on top of hers. "Now, we both know that that's the important part of this, but the only important part that Mum will see is that Harry and Ginny are supposed lovers. This will only confirm her suspicions."

Hermione snorted. "She already banned them from her house, I doubt it can get much worse."

"Have you *met* my mum?"

Hermione rolled her eyes. "Ron, she's just hurt. It's so *obvious*. She really *does* want them to come back, but she's feeling betrayed by them. Honestly, you are such a guy!"

"And proud of it too," Ron added. He reached for his wand on his nightstand. "Are there any more copies of this magazine?"

Hermione shook her head. "Not around the house, I hope."

Ron nodded and with a quick muttering of words the paper burst into flames. He grinned his lopsided smile at Hermione. "Let's go smooth things over with Mum, eh?"

Hermione raised her eyebrows. She placed her hands carefully on his shoulders and pushed him backwards so that he was laying down. " *You* will stay right here, Ron. *I* will go talk to your mum." She snorted. "If I let you try and smooth anything over Harry would be dead before you can say 'insensitive'."

"I am *not* insensitive!" Ron protested, resisting her hands to sit up once more. He puffed out his chest ever-so-slightly. "I happen to be the most sensitive guy in this household."

"Ron . . ." Hermione gave him a doubtful look. "You've made me cry more times than I can count. You are insensitive." She smiled quickly, trying to lessen the blow. "But don't worry, you can't help it. It's just this utter cluelessness to what it is you're saying."

Ron stuck his tongue out at her playfully and wrinkled his nose. He folded his hands across his chest and pouted. "Fine. I'm insensitive. Why don't you go and try to talk to my mum about this. It's better that way. I don't want to be in direct light of a few well-chosen curses."

Hermione clicked her tongue in annoyance. "Your mum won't curse me. I know what to say to make her feel better. I have a woman's intuition, Ron, something you just can't understand."

"Because I'm *insensitive*."

"Oh, don't act like you're offended, we both know you're not," Hermione snapped. She got up from his bed and pulled out her wand. With a twist of it she vanished from Ron's bedroom and Apparated down the stairs to Molly Weasley's kitchen. The witch was sipping tiredly at a mug of tea, staring blankly at the wall.

"Mrs. Weasley?" Hermione said, concern flowing through her words. She moved to place a hand on the older woman's shoulder. "What's wrong?"

Molly nodded towards the table. Hermione looked and had to hold in a groan. Witch Weekly. On the cover were bright words proclaiming that it had the latest news on Harry Potter's love affair with Ginny Weasley.

"Mrs. Weasley . . ." Hermione tried. She couldn't think of anything to add, so she sat down at the table across from Molly, hoping that just her presence would be soothing.

Molly stirred her tea uselessly, still staring blankly ahead. She let out a sigh suddenly, after long minutes of waiting on Hermione's behalf. "She's my little baby."

Hermione detected the choked tears in the woman's voice, and she reached for Molly's hand. "Mrs. Weasley--"

"Dear, call me Molly," Molly interrupted politely, a warm smile on her face. It didn't quite reach her eyes though.

"--Molly, you know not to trust a word printed in Witch Weekly."

"How can I not? There's no evidence that proves Harry and Ginny aren't guilty," Molly said. She swiped at her eye suddenly and turned her head away from Hermione's view. "I never raised her to do such a horrific thing!"

"Molly, this is Ginny. And *Harry*. You know that he would never do anything disrespectable."

"Then why did they leave on holiday together?" Molly asked quietly. She turned her head back to Hermione, her eyes pleading an honest answer. "If not for a love tryst, why would they go traveling together? In the same hotel rooms at night, visiting the city of romance . . ." Molly shuddered slightly.

Hermione felt guilt rip her heart. She couldn't tell Molly too much, Harry would never forgive her. "Did you ever think that Ginny might be able to save Harry?" Hermione asked quietly. Molly looked at her questioningly. "Ron and I have talked. Harry has not been the same for years; ever since Cedric's death. Defeating Voldemort just seemed to make him withdraw further into himself. Maybe Ginny can heal him, can talk sense into him."

"What is he planning to do that Ginny needs to talk sense into him for?" Molly asked, her voice rising slightly in fear. "What they said in the magazine wasn't true right?"

"Voldemort is dead," Hermione stated, not wanting to go around that. She sighed and rubbed at her temples, collapsing slightly. "I don't know if Harry would want me to share with you all the details."

"You know what's going on then?" Molly's voice was a little louder, a little stronger. "Is Ginny in danger?"

"I only have suspicions," Hermione said soothingly. "I don't think Ginny is in any real danger, not with Harry protecting her."

Molly laughed bitterly. "I'm sure."

Hermione bit her lip, trying to find a way to approach the subject tactfully. "Harry doesn't . . . like girls. Not like that."

Molly's jaw dropped slightly. "Are you saying he's . . ."

"No!" Hermione shuddered at the thought. "God, no. It's just . . . he's always so involved in wallowing in self-pity that he never thinks about anything for himself. I'm sure that even if Ginny threw herself at him he wouldn't bat an eye. He doesn't think about women in that light."

Molly considered this seriously. She paused for a long time, looking deep in thought. "Would Ginny throw herself at him?" she finally asked.

Hermione laughed. "No," she reassured Molly. "Ginny has much more sense than that."

"That's what I thought," Molly said, her voice sad and empty.

Hermione squeezed Molly's hand. "Don't give up hope, Mrs. Weasley. When they come back they'll explain everything. Just rest at ease until then. Harry won't do anything irrational."

* * * * *

Ginny ran up to Harry, a delighted smile on her face as she held up a little bear. "Look what I won!" she cried out happily. She jerked her thumb backwards. "It was an easy game too." Her grin turned wicked for a second. "When you have a helping wan--I mean hand."

Harry laughed. "You're unbelievable," he informed her. He took the bear from her and inspected it. "Why would you want something like this?"

Ginny snatched it back. "So one day I can show it to my grankids and bore them with a story about going on an adventure with the great Harry Potter."

Harry paled slightly. "You're not serious, right?"

Ginny laughed and playfully hit him with her prize. "You're too . . . modest," she finally decided. "Live a little. Have you ever thought about using your famousness for a good cause?"

"And what good cause are we referring to here?" Harry asked suspiciously.

"Oh, nothing . . . maybe a free drink here, a free meal at a nice exquisite restaurant there." She smiled innocently at him.

"What is it with you and free drinks?" he asked, shaking his head. "You need help."

" *I* need help?" Ginny raised her eyebrows. "Harry, you won't even climb to the top of the Eiffel Tower with me because you're afraid of heights!"

Harry clamped a hand over her mouth, but it was too late. He looked around nervously. "Don't say that so loud!" he hissed. He pulled away from her, trying to become cool and collected once more. "It's not because I'm afraid," he lied non-too-convincingly. "It's just that I don't care to try it. It's too crowded."

Ginny shook her head with a smile. "Maybe I can find another man to go up there with me. Someone strong and brave. Someone who can look down at the ground and say, 'I am not afraid to fall'."

Harry took her bear from her in response. Ginny reached for it, but she was tiny and short compared to him. He held it just out of arm's reach. "I'm not afraid of heights," he said stonily.

Ginny placed her hands on her hips and huffed at him. "Then prove it. Accompany me up the elevator and to the top. I want to watch the fireworks from up there."

Harry turned his head sideways, scoping out the people surrounding the great tower. "It's too crowded," he tried again. He could taste the defeat in his voice.

Ginny hugged him happily, holding him tight and brief. She pulled away with a bright smile. "Thank you, Harry!" she said. In his shock, he let his hand drop, and she pulled her bear back. She tucked it in the safety of her pocket.

Harry shook his head as he watched her prance towards the crowds. He had never agreed to going up there. He sighed. He had learned in the past few weeks that it was best to just give Ginny what she wanted; things stayed simple that way.

He rushed to catch up with her.

* * * * *

It was already so close to the start of the fireworks that any sane, normal person would not have been able to get to the edge of the tower, let alone try. Ginny was neither sane nor normal. She made a triumphant noise when she was at the edge, looking out over Paris. She looked over at Harry who had stayed close behind her, holding onto to her arm for dear life. He was keeping his eyes peacefully on the floor.

Ginny laughed at the queasy look on his face. She put a supportive arm around his back and pushed him further towards the glass. "Just look out. It's beautiful."

Harry stiffened, but he brought his head up tentatively. His eyes widened slightly beneath his glasses as he stared out at the dark night, the lights of Paris even more evident in the blackness. A smile lit up his face. "Wow . . ."

"I know," Ginny breathed. She dropped her arm and pressed her face up against the glass. Suddenly an idea struck her. She turned around with a sly smile.

"No," Harry said immediately upon seeing her face.

"What?" Ginny asked innocently. "You don't even know what I'm going to say."

"I recognize that look. Whatever you have in mind is not something I think I'd enjoy," Harry said evenly. He couldn't help but let a little curiosity leak out onto his expression.

"Fine." Ginny sighed. "It would have been a lot of fun though."

Harry shook his head. "You're not going to get me to ask you what it was you had in mind if that's what you're trying to do," he said.

Ginny smiled. She loved playing with Harry like this. He could be so amusing. "Maybe we should go bungee jumping instead," she suggested brightly.

Harry's face actually paled as he turned to look at her. "The sad thing is that you're probably serious," he muttered.

"I am! It sounds like fun," Ginny said after a moment's though. "Hmm . . . it's pretty expensive though. Maybe we should try that on our next holiday."

"The next time I go on a holiday I'm bring along your mum so that you can contain a little control. What do you think she would say if she heard you talking about bungee jumping?"

Ginny frowned. "I wouldn't know," she said bitterly. "She's not even talking to me."

Harry sighed guiltily beside her. She was about to tell him to stop wallowing in self-pity, but he turned around and gave her a grave, catious look. "What exactly do you have in mind?"

Ginny smiled. Maybe she should encourage Harry to start wallowing more often. "Okay. You brought your Firebolt, right?" She snorted. "Of course you did, you bring it every where. I say we take it and your Invisibility cloak and actually fly in the sky while the fireworks are going," Ginny finished, a hopeful note in her voice as she gave Harry her most charming smile.

"That's insane. We could be seen. We're already in enough trouble as it is with the French Ministry . . . where are you going?"

Ginny had grabbed his hand and was leading him to the bathrooms. "Hurry," she whispered to him as they discreetly entered the men's bathroom. "The fireworks are about to start."

"What are you doing?" Harry demanded as soon as she shut the door behind them. She brought a hand up to her lips in a gesture of silence, then whisked out her wand. A second later she shrunk into a huge stuffed bear like the ones she had seen in booth to win. Strong hands surrounded her before she could fall, and she smiled inwardly when she heard Harry mutter a few curse words in her direction. Before he could get *too* detailed, she felt the telltale signs of Apparating that she had gotten used to by then. She let go of her concentration when she felt him land on the floor.

When she opened her eyes, she found that Harry's arms were still wrapped around her, and she was pressed intimately against him. She tilted her head up to see him leaning down, looking at her with guarded eyes. It struck her how close his lips were, and something began to tug at the edge of her mind, willing her to remember.

The moment ended abruptly, and before she knew it Harry was already across the room digging in his bag, searching for his Firebolt and Invisibility cloak. He pulled them out and cleared his throat loudly. "You really want to do this?" he asked.

"Huh?" Ginny looked up, surprised by his voice. She had been deep in thought, trying to remember whatever it was that she was supposed to remember. She shook her head and closed her jaw where it was left open stupidly. "Um, I mean, yes. Come on, let's go outside."

"I don't know why I let you drag me into these things," Harry murmered as he passed her to the doorway. She smiled, shaking her head. He let her drag him into these things because he wanted to do them as much as she did, she could tell. He was just stuffy enough to pretend that he didn't. She began to think again on what it was she had almost remembered and followed him down the stairs, still deep in thought, considering every possible answer. She hated not knowing something, especially if it was something she apparently already knew!

When they got onto the street, it looked deserted enough. Harry put his Firebolt down and got it to rise a few feet in the air. He sat down and motioned for Ginny to sit in front of him. She did, and she felt a little tingle on her skin and a thrilling jump in her stomach when she leaned backwards against his, her back against his chest. She heard a noise like a blanket being shaken, and then the silken folds of the Invisibility cloak set around her.

Harry took off, and she felt the exhiliration of flying light up her bloodstream. It was exactly as she imagined. Harry led her high above the streets. There was no glass shielding them from the night air as bodies of people they didn't know pressed tightly together, all trying to see the fireworks. She felt free this way, as though this moment was made only for her and Harry, as if the fireworks were going to be only seen by them.

Something special was happening, she was sure. She felt something in her stomach that wasn't usually there, and she let herself bask in the closeness of Harry. His warm breat was tickling her cheek as he rested his head on her shoulder. It wasn't just the phsyical awareness though, it was something deeper, something deep in her soul. She felt as if this were the one moment that mattered more in her life than any other. But she couldn't quite figure out what it was that was happening that made it so surreal.

A blast in the distance sounded, and Ginny turned her head in that direction. Harry moved the Firebolt so that they could watch as a burst of red light lit up the sky. Ginny watched in awe, the colors lurring her into a kind of trance. The way the danced across the sky, and the sounds and smells of the festivities flowing to her ears and nose . . . it was magical. She leaned even further against Harry, wanting him to share the moment with her.

It was then that it hit her. She had been trying so hard to remember that her mind had taunted her, the memory just out of her reach. Now that her mind was clear, and she had stopped wracking her memory, she remembered.

She had fought with Harry. She really *had* forgiven him. And . . . Ginny closed her eyes and made a soft noise. They had kissed.

"What is it?" Harry asked softly.

"You didn't tell me . . ." Ginny trailed off as one of the fireworks turned into a bright red heart. She wondered if it was a coincidence or not.

"What?"

Ginny twisted her head. It was uncomfortable, but it brought his lips in closer proximity to hers. She kissed him softly, just a tentative brush of the lips. Then her hand snaked its way to the side of his face and she pulled his face closer to hers. He groaned and attacked her lips with his own, deeping the kiss and making it more passionate than anything Ginny had experienced.

Inevitably, Harry ended the kiss. Ginny let her head fall in the space between his chest and his chin. She felt dizzy and weak suddenly. Her eyes drifted shut halfway as she watched the fireworks. The seemed dull compared to the ones she had seen behind close lids when Harry and her had finally kissed. Not for the first time, either.

Another epiphany hit her. Just as the grand finale was showing, the final bursts of colorful flames in the air, more brilliant than any before, she realized that she might just be in love with Harry Potter. She groaned inwardly. She couldn't afford another crush like she'd had early in her years at Hogwarts . . .

But Harry had kissed her back. Not just a little movement either, it had felt as if he was trying to devour her with his mouth. She sighed. It had felt wonderful. Being in his arms felt wonderful. She just hoped that he felt the same way, that she wasn't making a mistake that would ruin the friendship that had grown between them in the past few weeks.

Weeks . . . Ginny smiled at that thought. It really had only been a few weeks since she had truly gotten to know Harry. Before she had been in love with the image, the great hero Harry Potter, the popular boy she could never have. Now images of his laughter, his witty comebacks, his intense gaze washed over her. She loved the person he was, inside and out. (He wasn't too bad to look at either.)

Ginny watched the sky begin to wither of flames, becoming black once more. Music poured from somewhere below, and it hit her that her special moment was over. Now she had to deal with what she knew she felt, and what Harry might or might not feel. She desperately hoped that he returned her feelings. If he rejected her, she knew that nothing would stop her from running home to cry in her mum's arms. Not even the tempting revenge that lay just out of their reach. She had to help him save both the world and himself. She wasn't about to let her feelings get in the way of that. Even if she had to hide them from him.

Harry began to soar downwards, using his excellent eyesite to spot the house they were staying in amoung the many lights. They landed gracefully on the street behind the home they were staying in. Harry's hands moved from holding the broomstick to tighten around her stomach. He kissed the side of her neck tenderly, then let his forehead fall on her shoulder. He didn't want the moment to end either, he was lingering on the ends of what they had just experienced, not wanting to let go.

Ginny felt him nuzzle her neck, and her heart grew even bigger than it already was. It seemed as if it wanted to burst from her chest. She knew then that there was no way that she could hide her feelings from him. If she was lucky, he might just return them.

* * * * * * * * * *

AN: I'll try not to be so slow with the next chapter. You're requests have finally been heard -- Harry and Ginny are finally together! Took me long enough, huh? Anyway, you can all thank RogueAngel for this chapter. She put me in my place and told me I'd better write it soon. This copy is un-beta- ed because I wanted to get it to you guys as soon as possible. I'll put the beta-ed version up later.

~Haley

P.S. I now have a website! Check it out: www.geocities.com/haleyobsessions/