Kiss the Girl
Author's Notes: Finally, the epilogue is done. I can't believe it, really. Thank you to everybody who stayed on for the ride. More at the bottom.
Disclaimer: No ownership is claimed. None. Zip. Zero. Why are you still reading this?
For one human being to love another; that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks, the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.
Rainer Maria Rilke
Spring came to Hogwarts when nobody was looking, brining with it a battle against evil and the triumph of good…for a little while, at least. The Order of the Phoenix had held strong when put to the test, and Ron, Harry, and Hermione were all the better for it.
Spring gave way to summer and exams, and finally it was the last week before the Hogwarts Express carried all the students to their respective homes. The year had defiantly been a trial, but the results made it all worth it. Ron and Hermione still fought daily, but the bickering was broken up between shy glances and stolen kisses. Poor Harry and Ginny would have been more disturbed by this monster they had created, but they were too busy trying to avoid each other to sit down and discuss the putty they had molded into Hogwarts' most interesting couple.
This was noticed, however, by said interesting couple, and it was then that a plan was devised.
The beginning of June was truly a wonderful time at Hogwarts, especially for those who were in some sort of adolescent relationship. Ron and Hermione particularly enjoyed sitting under a large tree by the lake, where they could often be found talking quietly and blushing madly, as they were now. Harry made a point never to accompany them to this particular spot, knowing that everybody deserves a little privacy.
"Ron," Hermione said, when the couple had settled in. "Something has to be done about Harry and Ginny."
"Matchmaking is out of the question, Hermione. I adamantly refuse to ever go through that sort of hell again."
Hermione looked at him with narrowed eyes. "Because it worked out so badly for you last time?"
Ron laughed awkwardly, realizing belatedly he'd said something stupid. Ah well, it happened daily, more or less. "No, I didn't mean it that way. I just meant that it wasn't exactly fun trying to get you to like me."
"I already did like you, you prat, you were just too busy eating parchment to notice."
"I thought we agreed that we'd never talk about that!" Ron whined, his tongue drying up at the mere memory of the escapade.
Hermione only smiled. "You agreed, I didn't."
"Some girlfriend you are," Ron mumbled. However, this comment was cancelled out by the grip he'd taken on her hand.
Hermione put her head on Ron's shoulder, a gesture she would never have done if there had been actual people around. Hermione wasn't exactly PDA friendly.
"I just don't see why we can't help them out a little," Hermione said. "Harry and Ginny would be good for each other. Ginny would keep Harry's mind off of You-Know-Who and Harry's been the love of Ginny's life from the time she was ten."
"If you ask me," Ron said, "Ginny is much to young to be together with anybody. She should wait until she's out of Hogwarts at the very least."
"Good thing nobody asked you then," Hermione quipped.
Ron sighed and stared out at the lake. "Well, if you insist on doing this, we might as well do it right."
Fred and George smiled evilly at the large group of people that stood all around them in one of the dungeons unused chambers. Cobwebs and iron chains were hanging off the walls, and Neville Longbottom kept eyeing them fearfully while edging closer to Parvati Patil and Lavender Brown. The other members of the group were Ron, Hermione, Lee Jordan, Dean Thomas, and Seamus Finnegan.
Somewhere in the castle Harry was wondering if he had missed a class of some sorts, upon viewing that every one of his year mates was missing.
"Alright then, this is some last minute fun before we have to leave," Fred was saying. "It's all planned out, and everybody has a job to play. This is going to be the most amazing show all of Hogwarts has ever seen, seeing as George and I plan on going out with bang."
"Probably quite literally," Dean muttered to Seamus.
"It will be tonight, at six o'clock sharp," George was saying. "Everybody is going to have to leave the Great Hall early, except for Ron and Hermione."
"You two are going to get the subjects down to the lake by any means possible," Fred continued.
"What do you want us to do, throw them in a sack and lug them down over our shoulders?" Ron cried.
Fred and George looked at each other, and then shrugged. "Sounded good to us," George said. Ron rolled his eyes.
"This is so romantic!" Lavender squealed, the excitement of their plan finally getting to her. Parvati giggled next to her, causing multiple persons to wonder why exactly they had agreed to participate in what they were about to do.
"Right, anyway," George said. "You are all free to go, and may the force be with you."
Neville looked around confused. "The what?"
Neither Harry nor Ginny saw it coming.
Both had just finished dinner and were planning on going back to the Common Room to relax, never dreaming that they were the victims of one of the larger conspiracies of Hogwart's history. However, they were, and there was no escaping what was planned for them.
"Harry," Ron said, making sure Hermione was moving towards Ginny out of the corner of his eye. "There's something by the lake I think you should see."
"What is it?" asked Harry, perplexed at Ron's shifting eyes.
"Er…what is it?" Ron damned Harry for having a brain and the ability to ask questions.
"Yeah, as in, why should I go down to the lake with you? You okay, Ron?"
Ron forced a laugh. "Oh, me, I'm fine! I just really need you to see this. It's a…erm…a surprise!"
Ron Weasley, the next Albert Einstein.
Harry got up, shaking his head, and followed Ron out the door. Hermione, meanwhile, had told Ginny a much more convincing story about a rare flower that was blooming on the lake's shore. If she had known Ron's tactic ("It's a…erm…a surprise!) perhaps she would have made one up for him, too.
Ron and Hermione had arranged things so that Ron and Harry would leave the castle five minutes before Hermione and Ginny did. In this aspect, at least, Ron had no problems. He lead Harry down to the water's edge, examining his friend the entire way. He didn't look suspicious, just pale and worn out from the past year. If Ron had any grievances remaining about the plan his brother's had created, they left him then.
"Over there," Ron said. He pointed to some large reeds. He led Harry behind them, revealing a rickety old row boat that had defiantly see better days. "Isn't it great?"
"Um, sure, Ron…" Harry scratched his head. "We're not getting in that thing, are we?"
"Of course we're not!" Ron assured him. He was being totally truthful to. After all 'we' would mean Harry and himself, in actuality only Harry would be stepping inside the vehicle (for lack of a better word.)
"Whose boat is this?" Harry asked, walking up to it slowly.
"I dunno who made it originally, but Hagrid had it behind his shed."
Harry ran his hand against the frame. "It was probably really nice at one point," he said. What he saw next made him gasp.
"What, what?" Ron ran to Harry, grabbing his arm when he reached him. "Is it your scar? Are you in pain? Should I get Dumbledore? Are you hurt? Harry? Harry!" Of course, Harry couldn't reply because he was being shaken within an inch of his life.
"RON, I'M FINE!" Harry finally screamed. The redhead released Harry sheepishly.
"Well what did you gasp for then?" Ron muttered. Harry rolled his eyes.
"Look at this." Harry indicated to a carving that decorated one of the boat's benches. Ron leaned towards it, distinguishing a pair of initials wrapped in a heart. JP + LE, the heart read.
"Yeah, so?" Ron asked.
"Ron!" Harry exclaimed. "These are my parents, they used this boat!"
"Oh, wow, Harry…that's great." Ron patted Harry on his back, not sure what to do given the current situation. Goodness knows they were too manly to hug or something else utterly girly.
Just then Ginny and Hermione emerged from behind the reeds, causing Harry to look up with a start. Ron shoved Harry into the boat, then did the same to Ginny. How he accomplished not to throw either into the water is still a mystery.
"What are you doing?" Hermione hissed, hitting Ron's arm. "You weren't supposed to shove them."
Ron looked unimpressed. "Well I didn't use a sack now, did I?"
Harry and Ginny had finally managed to right themselves when a mysterious sound caught their attention. It sounded like grass blowing in the wind, but with a more musical quality. After a few seconds wind chimes joined the ensemble. "What's going on?" Ginny asked.
Harry had no idea, and he told her so.
That's when Ginny turned her head to the left and saw a large wooden platform erected by the lake's shore. On it stood Lee Jordan, wearing a dashing set of robes and dark sunglasses. Parvati and Lavender stood behind him, each wearing matching magenta robes. If that weren't odd enough, large, beautiful fire works were going off behind the trio, in all the colors of the rainbow. Fred and George could be seen activating the lights nearby. Nobody noticed Dean and Seamus, who were hidden behind a tree, causing the musical qualities to emerge from all the nearby plants. Neville, the last of the group (though Harry and Ginny had no way of knowing this,) was absent, having fallen down a flight of stairs and landed himself a stay in the hospital wing.
"Oh dear," Ginny whispered. Harry only nodded.
"Hey there kids," Lee called, his voice magically amplified. "We've got a little present for you, one that we've put quite a bit of planning into."
That's when he began to sing.
"There, you see her
Sitting there across the way
She don't got a lot to say
But there's something about her
And you don't know why
But you're dying to try
You wanna kiss the girl…"
Harry gazed at Ginny with wide eyes, being just reminded why he hadn't spent any time with her recently. Ginny just sat across from him, staring at the ground demurely. Suddenly, a large heart shaped firework erupted in the sky.
Lee just laughed as if it were all part of the song, a three ring circus put on to bedazzle the eyes. It probably was.
"Yes, you want her
Look at her, you know you do
Possible she wants you too
There is one way to ask her
It don't take a word
Not a single word
Go on and kiss the girl…"
Lavender and Parvati moved in front of Lee, each blowing kisses at him as they did so. The next part they sang in unison, and it was the perfect part for them.
"Sha la la la la la
My oh my
Look like the boy too shy
Ain't gonna kiss the girl
Sha la la la la la
Ain't that sad?
Ain't it a shame?
Too bad, he gonna miss the girl…"
"I'm not even sixteen yet, you nutters!" Harry suddenly screamed, standing up in the boat. It swayed precariously, causing Ginny to shriek and pull him down.
"Are you crazy?" she asked him.
Harry opened his mouth to retort, but stopped when he saw
the look in her eyes. She was terrified. He slowly sat down next to her,
putting her hand in his. "I'm not going to let you fall out, you know."
"Now's your moment
Floating in a blue lagoon
Boy you better do it soon
No time will be better
She don't say a word
And she won't say a word
Until you kiss the girl…"
Ginny blushed at the lyrics of the song, hoping Harry had some how managed to block them out. Sure they were really, really loud, but hey…maybe he was deaf?
It was Lavender and Parvati's turn again.
"Sha la la la la la
Don't be scared
You got the mood prepared
Go on and kiss the girl
Sha la la la la la
Don't stop now
Don't try to hide it how
You want to kiss the girl…"
"This really is very silly," Ginny said. "I mean, where do they even get the idea that you'd want to kiss me?"
"Or where you would want to kiss me," Harry agreed.
"Would you?" Ginny squeaked.
"Would I what?"
"Oh never mind!" Ginny looked out at the water, watching as her brothers' light show reflected in the ripples. She knew she could have used her wand to get them both back to shore, but a part of her still hoped…
But she was being silly. She knew that, and she sighed.
Harry, on the other hand, was studying Ginny's hair. Dusk and the fireworks made it look mysterious, coming alive one second in a brilliant red and back into gray the moment it was dark again. He had to remind himself she had only just turned fifteen, and that they both were very young.
His eyes caught the heart engraved in the boat's wooden seat. His parents had married before they were twenty, he remembered, not that much older than he and Ginny were now.
At that instant Harry didn't care that they had audience, or that all of Hogwarts was probably watching by now. He looked down at Ginny and thought of all the times she had talked to him that past year, laughed with him, made him smile. And she didn't think he wanted to kiss her, something that was totally ridiculous…
And something he was only just noticing to be so.
"Ginny?" he said softly. She
turned her head to look at him.
"Sha la la la la la
And listen to the song
The song say kiss the girl
Sha la la la la
The music play
Do what the music say
You got to kiss the girl…"
And Harry did just what the song said. He leaned in and cupped Ginny's face gently, fumbling a bit with where to place his face. He heard her intake of breath, and felt how rigid her hand was in his. Suddenly, fear gripped him, and he started to move away. Ginny, however, wasn't about to let that happen. With courage nobody knew her to possess she closed the distance between them and let her lips meet Harry's.
Behind them Fred and George had let ten fireworks all fly into the sky to burst at once.
Ginny and Harry's first kiss was illuminated by the light's splendor, but they didn't notice it. Ron and Hermione did, and they exchanged a high five before trading the gesture in for a more intimate congratulations.
Lavender and Parvati sighed dreamily, then turned their gazes to Seamus and Dean as if the boys were pieces of meat.
The Weasley twins would have stayed longer, but at that exact moment Filch came running out after the pair, screaming bloody murder and cursing them, fire, color, and anything else that got in the way. Mrs. Norris howled beside him, thoroughly enjoying the chase the Weasley twins were bound to give them.
In the Headmaster's tower Dumbledore stood with Professor McGonagall, laughing delightedly at the spectacle before him.
"Really, Albus, I think this had gone on long enough," he heard Minerva saying. He didn't comment on the fact that she had had her eyes transfixed on the scene with quite a bit of interest for the last five minutes.
"Love is in the air, Professor," he told her. "If only I were a young man. Alas, I am now only a spectator."
"Indeed," huffed his colleague. "Now are we going to go over the list I brought you or not?"
Harry and Ginny were immune to all of this though. After a brief meeting of lips they pulled away to stare at each other, then began laughing hysterically. All of the tension they'd harbored for months disappeared and was replaced by something much better. For the first time in awhile Harry felt light, free from the burdens that were fated to rest on his too-young shoulders. Ginny was blushing madly as she laughed, as if she couldn't decide whether to laugh or cry. It appeared the former was winning.
Lee Jordan continued on for the last verse, a satisfied grin on his face.
"You've got to kiss the girl
You wanna kiss the girl
You've gotta kiss the girl
Go on and kiss the girl."
Harry did not get another chance to kiss Ginny, though. For in one quick flash a giant tentacle reached out into the air and tossed their boat right out of the water. Harry grasped Ginny's hand and felt her grab onto it madly. They flew for one brief moment before they landed in the shallow section of the lake. After a good deal of thrashing and falling over they managed to stand up and march out of the lake. Ron and Hermione ran up to meet them, Hermione looking frantic and Ron howling with mirth. They remained hand in hand, ready to face any obstacles the next few years would put before them.
To this day nobody knows whose matchmaking scheme worked out the best. The story behind the schemes lived on forever, though, pieces of otherworldly legend that were never forgotten.
First off, a big thank you to everybody who has ever given time to read and review this story. It's my baby, and your praise for it has simply been incredible. I can only hope I returned the favor while writing this.
And just in case you're worried that I'm going to disappear, I'm letting you know that I'll be back with another story I've already started writing. Here's a nice long summary.
Post-Hogwarts. Ron Weasley and Harry Potter secure passes to the most elite wizarding spa for their wives (guess who) in hopes of scoring a few brownie points. What they're not expecting, however, is the pandemonium that will erupt when they're left home to watch the kids. Throw in a large pack of Weasleys, a mischievous black dog, a would-be seductress that won't go away, and more caffeine and sugar than any human-being should be allowed to consume, and you've got a weekend with Ron and Harry. They might have survived Voldemort, but will their children be as kind?
Expect it to be out some time in May, and in the meanwhile tell me what you think about this story. Do you have ideas that you want to add? Remember, all of this is subject to change.
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