AN: I'm going to be honest, I've only ever read one Harry Potter book, which I think may have been Chamber of Secrets and I didn't see the movie version of The Half Blood Prince. So of course I decided to write a fanfic set during Half Blood Prince. So if some things don't match what actually occurred in the movies or books in this story… that's why it's fanfic.
Many people believed Lavender Brown to be a stupid blonde bimbo.
Of course those people are wrong.
She wasn't stupid, she simply had average grades. Maybe people thought she was stupid because she hadn't scored straight Os in her O.W.L.s? Big deal, a lot of people didn't score that. Maybe they thought she was stupid because she loved Divination? Sure, I love the art. But that makes me stupid? Maybe it was because she was emotional and, as one of her friends once told her "prone to exaggeration". Ok, they had a point there. But feeling strongly about everything doesn't make me stupid. Annoying sure, I can see that. But not stupid right?
A bimbo? I've had a total of 3 boyfriends! One was a two week thing when she was 13, another was a stable relationship of a few months in 5th year and the last was her current boyfriend Ron Weasley. Three relationships isn't enough to be called a bimbo she thought. Especially since she never let any of them go beyond snogging. I do love snogging though.
And last but certainly not least she is not blonde. Why the entire school seemed to persist in their idea that she was blonde was completely beyond her. She's only lived here for six years. Maybe the school needed to have their eyesight checked? Or maybe, she thought, since everyone thinks I'm stupid and a bimbo they automatically assume that I must be blonde.
Maybe they think I spell my hair brunette? How dare they? This is my natural color.
"Christ," she muttered. "Stay focused."
While Lavender wasn't a stupid blonde bimbo she did get easily distracted when she was anxious.
And she was anxious.
She had noticed recently that one Hermione Granger wasn't exactly being her usual friendly self to her. Sure, Hermione wasn't super best friends with her, Parvati, Fay or Clara. But since they were all dorm mates they were at least friendly to each other.
Maybe since Parvati and I are best friends, and Fay and Clara are best friends, we don't get along with Hermione as much because she's the odd one out? Maybe, but she doubted it. Hermione didn't seem to share any of the same interests that her dorm mates did.
Lavender cleared her mind for a second time, she was here to confront Hermione on her recent frosty attitude towards her and that's what she was going to do.
Walking into her dormitory she saw Hermione sitting on her bed, her head buried in a giant tome, a free hand scribbling away notes on a nearby parchment. Her eyes briefly looked up and caught Lavender's before she went straight back to her note taking, her scribbling more furious than before. Lavender sighed and looked over to her best friend. Parvati seemed to sense her thoughts, best friends after all, and looked up from her Witch Weekly and gave a shrug. Fay and Clara seemed to be out.
Lavender looked over to Parvati again and gave her a nod which she returned. Parvati started to walk out of the dorm and paused by Lavender and whispered "Good luck" before exiting the dorm.
And now she was alone with Hermione and her noisy quill.
Hermione seemed to notice this too, Lavender could see her tense as she walked over to her bed.
"Hey Hermione, can we talk?" she asked politely as she stood over Hermione's bed. She didn't make a move to sit down and she wanted this to go easily. She did want to clear up this… whatever it was, and you can't do that with a bad attitude and bad manners.
No response. Maybe Hermione simply didn't hear?
"I'm a little busy Lavender."
Oh. Lavender's eyes widened momentarily at the curt tone. Well that's how it's going to be?
"Hermione, what's your problem?"
That certainly got her attention.
"I have no idea what you mean Lavender. Now if you can leave me alone?"
Lavender usually left Hermione alone when she was studying, but not now. So she put her foot down. "No, I'm having none of this Hermione. Lately you've been acting as if you can't stand being in the same room as me. We've never been close friends but at least I've never acted like a git towards you, so I expect the same courtesy!"
"Courtesy!" Hermione flared up. "Courtesy! You're one to talk about courtesy what with you and Won-Won giving everyone in the common room a show! Courtesy would be to at least get a room before you start going at it like animals!"
Ah, so there it is.
Both girls knew this was about Ron. Hermione had just admitted it, however inadvertently, and Lavender knew it was about Ron. She wasn't stupid after all.
"So this is about Wo-Ron then?" Lavender almost slipped into her nickname for her boyfriend. Hermione probably wouldn't appreciate her nickname for him at this time. And she didn't if her quick grimace was anything to go by.
"No Lavender, it's about both of you. You really should have some respect for the rest of us before you go out and give us a show."
Lavender scoffed. "Oh really Hermione, you expect me to believe that? I know for a fact that this is about Ron. You are the only one who complains about our "shows", you aren't talking to Ron at all and when you are it's usually just to argue with him over nothing, you have been acting cold towards me since we got together! So what exactly is the problem? If you are worried that I'm stealing away your friend from you…" Lavender paused, unsure of her words. "Well, maybe it's your own fault. Keep in mind that you are also driving Harry away too."
Hermione flinched. "What? Oh. Harry… that's different. That's nothing."
"How?" Lavender asked.
"I don't want to talk about it Lavender, least of all to you."
Well that doesn't make sense. Lavender thought the situation over; she had initially thought that Hermione was angry at both Ron and Harry. This is true. But the more she thought about it, something was nagging her. Hermione was obviously in some sort of spat with Harry, everyone had noticed their arguing recently. The sight of Harry and Hermione arguing over anything was enough to get people to gossip. But when Harry and Hermione argued it looked and sounded like she was just disappointed in Harry, or let down somehow. It was the same look she get whenever she would hear that he hadn't finished some essay or assignment, the look that showed that Harry was doing something that she didn't approve of. But something that sooner or later they'd get over. Just two best friends having a temporary tiff.
But with Ron it looked like she was betrayed. As if he had done something, or was doing something, that hurt Hermione deeply.
And Hermione really hated Lavender at the moment.
Well that doesn't make any sense at all.
"Hermione, do you fancy Ron?"
Hermione glared at her, anger evident on her face. "Well it took you long enough to figure it out Lavender. Yes, I happen to fancy Ron, your boyfriend. Maybe now you know why I didn't want to talk about this with you?"
A few moments passed in awkward silence and Hermione made to get back to her note taking. "Now Lavender, if this is over I'd like to-"
"That's just stupid."
Whatever Hermione expected Lavender to say, it certainly wasn't that. She looked up at the source of her irritation and cause of heartbreak for the past few weeks to see a very confused look on Lavender's face.
"What?" Hermione asked, indignation and confusion etched in her voice.
"Hermione," Lavender started before stopping, her eyes scrunching up as she searched for the words to continue. "Hermione," Lavender started up again, "I want to ask you a few things, just a few things alright?" she added as she saw Hermione move to bury herself in her books again. "Look, just answer me and I'll be out of your hair." she added, purposefully giving the bookworm a jab at her hair. "Can you please answer me honestly?"
Hermione had to fight the urge to roll her eyes. "Ok. Ask away then." she huffed in annoyance.
"What exactly do you see in Ron?" Lavender asked, smirking when she saw the bookworm's eyes widen in surprise. That small show telling her that she had the upper foot now and she was determined to use it.
"Well he's my best friend." She replied honestly.
"So is Harry." Lavender replied instantly, her own mind running a mile a minute while Hermione's was still warming up.
"Well he's got a nice body?" Hermione said uncertainly, obviously thrown off guard by the entire line of questioning that she had entered.
"Ok Hermione," Lavender said in a tone that mirrored Hermione's own disbelief at her weak reasoning. "Let's just say that a nice body is enough to get your attention. There are a ton of guys with better bodies than Ron Weasley."
Hermione sat, mouth agape, before she recovered. "How can you say that! Ron is your boyfriend!"
"So what Hermione? Just because we are dating doesn't mean I'm blind to the other guys around here just like I'm sure Ron sometimes eyes up girls with more curves than me. It's natural." Lavender narrowed her eyes. "So, what physically attracts you to Ron that other guys don't have? It can't be his red hair or else you'd be going after the Weasley twins." Hermione shuddered. "It can't be his height because there are a few guys who are as tall or taller than Ron. His freckles? Others have that too. His eyes? Same. It can't be anything physical since Viktor Krum is much better looking than Ron and you didn't stick with him."
"He's in Bulgaria." Hermione offered as an explanation.
"And with floo travel you could be in Bulgaria in what? An hour? Long distance relationships don't exist in the wizarding world Hermione."
"Ok, so then why do you like him?" Hermione countered, the questioning about her feelings for Ron really agitating her.
"No, no Hermione, we aren't here to discuss why I like my Won-Won," Lavender didn't care if Hermione hated the nickname, "I know exactly why I like him. What we are discussing here is why you like him, and so far you've done a terrible job of explaining."
"Ok fine." Hermione almost growled out, "Maybe I can't put my finger on what physically attracts me to him. Maybe it's a conglomeration of traits and not a single defining characteristic. But I do have other reasons." Lavender simply gave her a nod to continue. "Well, he's… well he's been there for me when I've needed it."
Finally Hermione beamed, she knew she could answer this correctly. "First year he saved me from a troll." She wore a great smile as she remembered his bravery… and quickly scowled as Lavender rained on that parade.
"Yeah, I know that story. He cast Wingardium Leviosa on a troll, using its own club to knock it out." Lavender replied as she recalled that, it was one of the first stories Ron had told her. "So where was Harry on all of this? Oh that's right, he was on the back of the troll trying to distract it." Lavender sighed, "There were two people who went in to save you from that troll Hermione, and even though I'm dating one of them I can tell you that my boyfriend wasn't the bravest on that night. Besides Ron is the reason you were in that bathroom in the first place."
Hermione ground her teeth, obviously angry that Lavender had easily tarnished what she must have thought had been a stellar point in her argument.
"Second year! When-"
"When you were petrified for those few weeks." Lavender cut in with a smug look on her face. It wasn't that she enjoyed doing this to Hermione, it was just that she enjoyed having pre-empted the great Hermione Granger. She felt really smart right now. "Ron would visit you… but only for a few minutes or so, and never at breakfast, lunch or dinner."
Hermione's face fell, Lavender feeling a tinge of sympathy for the girl. Clearly she hadn't actually thought about Ron's visits beyond "he was there" and must have imagined him sitting by her side and worrying himself sick as she was prone to do when Harry ended up in the hospital wing. Even though she was currently arguing with her she felt she needed to cheer the girl up.
"Oh Hermione, Harr-"
"Harry was there all his free time right?" Hermione asked in a soft voice.
"Yeah, he was." Lavender replied softly. "Who told you?"
"No one, I guessed. Or I knew. Harry's like that." Lavender saw a small smile appear on the girl's face as she thought about her other best friend before it disappeared and she returned her gaze towards her. "Well in third year-"
"Third year? What could Ron have done for you in third year? He's the reason you got into your first argument with Harry. Everyone knows that! All over some stupid broomstick, you were miserable for that week where Harry took Ron's side. Luckily the boy realized you were just looking out for him and concerned about him. Besides," she continued, "I had to listen to Ron whine for a while when he complained about you and Harry running off and having your own adventure."
Hermione looked like she was about to cry. Or hex her. Or hex her while crying. The girl was scary sometimes.
"Look Hermione, I think I know what you are going to say. Fourth year you might try to argue that after his very public blow up over you and Viktor Krum means that he was jealous. Ok, maybe he was, I don't know since he's never told me. But remember that it was Ron that walked out on you and Harry that year. Ron, he's a great guy in his own way or he could be one day, but he wasn't a great guy that year. He let his jealousy and insecurity control him and he walked out on his two best friends. This is the guy you like? And fifth year-"
"No, stop." Hermione asked, more like pleaded. "Ok, you make good points. But still, I fancy Ron." Hermione really didn't want to do this anymore, this entire thing had gone into directions she would have rather avoided.
"Alright Hermione, I'll drop it. You like Ron? Ok, I accept that. We'll try to keep our relationship out of your face ok?" She wanted to see the bushy-haired girl nod, the fight gone out of her, "Ok, thank you Hermione. You know, I'm sorry. I really am. I didn't know you liked him until now, I actually thought. Well. Hermione, just think about the fact that you didn't argue or defend Ron while I basically called you out on the fantasy you have about him. I basically grilled you as to why you'd like him and, let's be frank, I wasn't very flattering towards my own boyfriend. But you just… well, you let me tear him down. Maybe you should think about that."
And with that Lavender left the room, leaving the bookworm alone.
"What happened?" Parvati asked as soon as Lavender came down the stairs.
Lavender sighed and looked over at her boyfriend, who was having some loud conversation about Quidditch with a few other guys. "It doesn't make sense." she muttered, nothing in her mind allowing her to understand how Hermione Granger would fall for Ron Weasley. Ron was a fanciable guy, she was snogging him after all, but the image she had of Hermione Granger wasn't an image that had her fancying Ron of all people.
She turned to Parvati, who still had an expectant look on her face. Lavender opened her mouth to talk but then quickly snapped it shut. Ok, me and Hermione aren't getting along right now, she thought, But that was a private conversation. She sighed and shrugged, Parvati simply nodding as if that explained everything.
"Hey Pav," Lavender asked suddenly, "I know you don't really like Ron," Parvati made a face, something about Ron simply rubbed the girl the wrong way. "But answer me honestly, you think you can see yourself falling for Ron?"
Parvati made a face.
"Right," Lavender said with a laugh which her friend returned.
"Lav," Parvati teased, "You're the type of girl who fall for guys like Ron."
Lavender giggled. It was true.
It was also true that Hermione Granger wasn't the type of girl that Lavender was.