His Eyes Are As Green As A Fresh Pickled Toad
Disclaimer: I asked Santa if I could own Harry Potter as a Christmas present, but he said I was too much of a fangirl, so sadly, it still belongs to JKR...
A/N: This is a little something that I wrote...ooh, nearly four years ago now, that for some reason I never got around to publishing. I just rediscovered it hidden in amongst some random files on my laptop today and so I decided to share! It's a bit of fluff about what would have happened if Ginny had taken matters into her own hands before the Quidditch match that brought Harry/Ginny together...
A/N Take Two: I've had a rough day and some reviews from you lovely readers would make me feel sooo much better...Pretty please with The Boy Who Lived on top...?
"His eyes are as green as a fresh pickled toad,
His hair is as dark as a blackboard,
I wish he was mine, he's truly divine,
The hero who conquered the Dark Lord."
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Ginny Weasley trudged through the mud towards the Quidditch pitch, deep in thought. Red and gold blurs dotted the sky, slightly silhouetted against the blazing orange sun.
She knew that she was late but hoped that Harry would understand why he was currently training with only two Chasers when she had had a chance to explain that she had only just escaped potions with Slughorn. She was all too aware that Harry scheduled their practices on days when "Slug Club" meetings were being held but, although she relished the opportunity to avoid unnecessary encounters with Zabini and McLaggen, she didn't appreciate being held back at the end of her potions lessons to discuss whether or not she would object to using her 'womanly wiles' to convince Harry to reschedule the Gryffindor training sessions.
The fact of the matter was that she did object. She had too much on her plate already what with the content of her latest potions lesson giving her a lot to think about…
"Books away, boys and girls! Books away!" Slughorn said jovially as he marched into the dungeon, puffing out his chest as he went. "Now everyone, gather round, please."
There was a scuffling of chairs and the class clustered themselves around the large, bubbling cauldron, which had replaced Slughorn's desk.
"Can everyone see?"
There was a collective nod around the room and a chorus of "Yes, sir" rang out.
"Jolly good. Now, can anybody tell me what…" He paused for dramatic effect, "…this is?"
Ginny craned her neck to get a better look at the cauldron's contents. The potion inside it was emitting faint spirals of steam and had a glistening sheen to it that reminded Ginny irresistibly of pearls.
"No one?" asked Slughorn, disappointment colouring his voice.
It was then that Ginny remembered Fred and George telling her about the ingredients for their WonderWitch range and tentatively raised her hand.
"Is it…it's Amortentia."
"It most certainly is, Miss Weasley! Ten points for Gryffindor, I think!"
Ginny blushed uncharacteristically but it was not because Slughorn had favoured her enough to give her house points, but because the Amortentia's steaming spirals had just wafted in her direction. It smelt amazing…
"Ok, so I want you to all pair up and, using the instructions on the board, concoct a love potion for me!"
Half an hour of love potion, sweat and tears and Slughorn finally called them to a halt (possibly because Terry Boot appeared to have covered himself in something that looked remarkably like pink-coloured Stinksap!).
"Alright, alright! I think that will do for today. Those of you who have successfully completed the task, fill a vial and put it on my desk. Now, your homework is to contemplate the smells you got when you were making your potion-those of you whose potion went wrong, see me now-and consider why these scents are particularly important to you. All will be revealed next lesson. Off you go!"
And that was how she had ended up not concentrating on Quidditch practice (when she had finally managed to prise herself away from Slughorn and make it down to the pitch!) and throwing the Quaffle into Katie Bell's unsuspecting face!
"Sorry, Katie!" she apologised hastily and Katie shrugged, still looking slightly shocked.
"Ginny! What is wrong with you today?!" shouted Harry as he touched down. Ginny couldn't help but notice that his hair looked spectacularly windswept whenever he got off his broom. It was very…sexy.
"Sorry Harry, but I don't believe I threw the Quaffle in your face, did I?" She didn't understand it, but ever since she had broken up with Dean, Harry just kept getting on her nerves.
He looked satisfactorily ruffled by her comment and retorted, "No, you didn't but I'm your captain and I've got to make damn sure that my team don't get Quaffle-d in the face!"
"Well you're doing a brilliant job of it, aren't you!" she screamed back at him.
"OI! SHUT UP, YOU TWO!" bellowed Ron.
Harry-who had just opened his mouth to argue back-fell silent and shot a glare, mingled with confusion, in Ginny's direction as the wind changed and his robes billowed in her direction. Ginny-who had been returning Harry's glare with full force-snapped her head up like a dog on scent. A blush slowly crept across her face, turning it as red as her hair.
Back in Slughorn's dungeon, she had smelt three distinct smells and two almost unrecognisable ones. Freshly cut grass, strawberries and broom polish were easily distinguishable but there had been an undercurrent of the fresh scent that you only ever smelt after a storm-which drifted across to her now-and a faint smell that was very much like rust mingled with water, but however seemingly disconnected or unidentifiable the smells might be, she finally realised that they all had one thing in common…
The grass reminded Ginny of playing two-a-side Quidditch in the fields next to The Burrow when she had knocked Harry's glasses off his face.
The strawberries reminded her of a summer evening when she had been sat next to Harry at dinner and his hand had brushed carelessly-accidentally- against her knee.
The broom polish was a scent that followed Harry around everywhere. Youngest Hogwarts Seeker in a century. So careful of his precious Firebolt.
The fresh storm scent reminded her of how he always smelt to her whenever he dismounted his broom. 'Windswept and interesting'.
The last smell. Rust mixed with water. She shuddered as she thought of it. The last smell reminded her of her first year at Hogwarts. Waking up in that godforsaken chamber, clutching onto Harry's robes. Covered in blood. Basilisk blood.
As Ginny had been contemplating this connection, the team had packed up the Quaffle, wrestled the Bludgers into their chains and Harry had caught the Snitch after a spectacular display of how the Wronski Feint should be done. She had missed it all, lost in her reminiscences. She hadn't even noticed that the brilliant crimson sunset had deepened to become a velvety blue, dotted with thousands of shimmering stars.
"Um…Gin?" Harry's voice broke through her concentration.
"Are you coming?" He sounded hesitant, as if afraid that she might blow up at him again.
"Um…I dunno, Harry…I might stay out here and look at the stars for a while…" It sounded corny even as she said it so she tried to cover for herself, "Astronomy homework, you know…" She could tell he didn't believe a word of it.
"Ok, Ginny. I'll stay out here with you…" His voice sounded different. He was using the tone of voice that was only ever reserved for her. Until that moment, she had always assumed that it was brotherly. Protective. Now she wasn't so sure. "Dangerous to be out on your own after dark, you know…" There was a smirk decorating his face. She flushed. Again. It was becoming something of a habit and she wasn't altogether too happy about it.
True to her word, she stayed and watched the sky darken to black. All the time she stood there, Harry's weight was pressed comfortingly against her side, his fingertips toying with hers. She had been right to think that things had been different since she had broken up with Dean but she was wrong on so many levels about the reason.
It was calming to stand on the Quidditch pitch with the breeze blowing out her robes and Harry's breath tickling the hair covering her ears. Butterflies played around in her stomach. Normally, she would've quite happily hexed those butterflies into oblivion (although the Bat Bogey Hex might not have worked quite as well on butterflies as it did on Zacharias Smith), but being around Harry made the butterflies easy to bear. They were almost pleasant.
After what felt like several hours, Harry stretched lightly and whispered in her ear, "I think that's probably enough Astronomy homework for one night, don't you? It's getting late and I'd rather Filch didn't have a reason to skin you alive."
"Mmm." It was a non-committal answer. She didn't want to move away from him but he extricated himself from her side.
"Come on, we can use the cloak. We've still got to get changed, anyway. Ron will be after my head-and various other parts of me-if I keep you out any later!"
"Fine. Come on then. I'll race you!" She pulled her tongue at him, goading him into running after her. It was exhilarating to have the "Chosen One" chasing her. Maybe Voldemort had the right idea about something…
She reached the changing rooms and threw open the door. She knew that Harry could've caught up with her easily but he was lagging behind on purpose. Normally, she would have been annoyed but while they had stood looking at the stars, she had been formulating a plan and Harry's chivalry gave her the few precious seconds that she needed to ensure that they were totally alone. She needn't have worried. The room was empty.
He burst through the door after her and caught her by the waist. "You're getting too fast for me, Gin!" he panted lightly.
She turned around in his arms so that he was holding her. She closed her eyes, savouring the moment that she had been imagining since she was eleven years old. Her unrefined fantasies couldn't compare to the perfection of feeling his warm hands through her muddy Quidditch robes, knowing that his face was just inches away from hers…
She opened her eyes. She couldn't stop herself. He was just staring down at her with the most perfect expression she had ever seen. Without thinking, she flung her arms around his neck and kissed him with so much force that he was thrown backwards into the wall. He pushed her away.
"Merlin, Ginny! What the hell was that?!"
"Shit…I don't know…I just…You were looking at me and I just…That was a kiss, ok, Harry?" Anger flared in her stomach. He hadn't kissed her back. He had pushed her away. He was still hung up on Cho! Every jealous thought she had ever had crept into her head, whispering maliciously.
He doesn't want you. Cho's prettier than you. All you'll ever be to him is his best mate's kid sister. What would the 'Chosen One' want with you? You've got nothing to offer him…
But her thoughts were interrupted by Harry's lips crushing against hers.
After what seemed like an age-a blissful age-they broke apart, gasping for breath. Harry's face was flushed and his emerald eyes were lidded, darker than usual. He was staring at her, completely unabashed.
She met his gaze with a determined, burning look. She knew what she wanted. Getting it, however, was an entirely different matter. She had never felt strongly enough about anyone to know the basic protocol. Was it ok for her to initiate it? Could she convey her desires in any way? Was there some sort of charm for this occasion? Where had she put her blasted wand?!
She needn't have worried. As soon as their gazes locked, Harry pulled her towards him roughly and laid her down on the wooden bench that took up the centre of the room. The timber slats were hard against her back when his weight was pressed against her but the thought became trivial when Harry's lips found hers again. She pushed her tongue out to meet his and they each duelled for dominance over the other, pulling desperately at each other's robes, their bodies reacting to every insignificant move.
Finally, Harry came up for air.
"G-inny…We s-houldn't do this…R-on w-ill kill me!" he stuttered, sitting up slightly and straightening his glasses.
She blinked, taken aback. Here was this perfect boy who, just seconds before, had been running his hands across her body and kissing her more passionately than she had ever known and now he was talking about Ron?! Talk about a mood-killer!
"You seriously want to discuss my brother right now?" She dipped her head to his neck and nibbled slowly at his collarbone.
"I just thought…Maybe we should…Don't you think we ought to…well, talk about…It…first?"
His hands shook but suddenly, Ginny felt confident, even sexy. She raised herself up on one elbow until she was just inches away from his face and seductively whispered, "But there are so many other things we could be doing…" She tugged slowly at his Quidditch robes…
He looked at her, staring into her face, trying to read her expression. For a second, she thought back to being a silly little girl experiencing her first crush. She didn't have long to contemplate it, as almost immediately, Harry threw caution to the wind and his lips crashed blissfully against hers again, but one fraction of a thought lingered in her fogging mind, and she realised, with a small, secret smile, that his eyes really were as green as a fresh pickled toad…