Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter, alas.

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Ginny Weasley?

Pacing back and forth in an empty class room, Harry Potter silently cursed under his breath while running his hands repeatedly through his hair. He had – stupidly it would seem – thought that his life would get a bit easier now that he was back at Hogwarts again.

Then again, when had his life ever been easy? But considering the hell he'd lived through last year, and the miserable summer he'd just experienced, Harry had indeed thought that his life was about to take a turn for the better.

Hah! Proved how much he knew. Ron was obsessing over Quidditch, somewhat understandingly since he had finally been made a member of the school team; still, the redhead could find something else to talk about now and then, couldn't he?

And when Ron wasn't talking his ear off about Quidditch, Hermione took his place, obsessing over their N.E.W.T.s, when she wasn't nagging him to death about how he was feeling.

Merlin knew he loved that girl, but right now Hermione was driving him up the bloody wall with her bi-polar personality. The N.E.W.T.s was still two whole years away, why should he stress about them now? And since Hermione hadn't lost anyone close to her, she sucked as a grief counsellor, but try to tell her that.

Still, Harry was used to his friends and their quirks, and, even if they were driving him batty at the moment, he put up with them because they were his friends and Harry knew that he wouldn't have survived the past five years without them.

No, what had pushed him way past his endurance was Ginny bloody Weasley.

Apparently, Ginny had decided, all by her lonesome, that she and Harry would make the perfect couple. And as a result of this conviction, Ginny had been pursuing him with a single-mindedness that was, frankly, quite frightening.

But what made a bad situation worse was the way both Ron and Hermione was encouraging her. When Harry had called his friends on their meddling, politely asking them to butt out, they had had the gall to lecture him, informing him that all he needed to be happy was love.

Harry snorted to himself as he recalled the last 'conversation' he'd had with his friends about Ginny and her obsession. The way Ron and Hermione was talking you'd think getting a girlfriend would make everything right in his life.

"If that is the case, then why the hell doesn't the two of them admit their feelings and start dating?" Harry muttered angrily, pacing some more. "If all you need is love, then why don't they grab hold of it with both hands and live happily ever after?" Sneering in disgust, the black haired teen changed direction and began to pace around the room anticlockwise.

What no one seemed to understand was that Harry didn't want a girlfriend. He didn't want a boyfriend either for that matter. But if he was to get a significant other, then Harry was pretty sure that other would be a boy and not a girl.

Not that it really mattered at the moment since Harry most definitely wasn't looking for a love interest. What with Voldemort and the war... no, Harry really couldn't see himself putting another human being in danger by dating them. He could never paint that big a target on someone else's back, and Voldemort and his Death Eaters would never overlook such a potential target as Harry Potter's sweetheart.

He had tried explaining that to Ron and Hermione, hoping that it would force them to see sense and stop trying to force him to spend time with Ginny.

Sadly, that talk had not gone well.

Ron had blown up and ended up shouting at him; Harry still was somewhat unsure just what his redheaded friend had been trying to tell him, the point had been lost early on in the shouting match. And Hermione had actually burst into tears and run for her dorm, sobbing incoherently into her handkerchief.

It had taken his friends three days to recover from that confrontation, and afterwards they'd been even more determined to set him up with Ginny. Not the outcome Harry had been hoping for.

"Maybe if I told them I am gay...?" Harry mused, running his hands through his hair for the umpteenth time. Pausing for a moment, the sixteen year old actually considered that option, but then he shook his head and began pacing again. "Nah, Ron would only blow up again, and Hermione... I'm not sure how Hermione would react to that piece of news, but I bet my last Knut that it would give her something new to lecture me about.

"Besides, if I told them that, it would soon end up in the papers, and I am really not interested in reading about what the Daily Prophet and Which Weekly has to say about my nonexistent love life," Harry added with a shudder. He wouldn't mind telling the entire world he was gay, if he had lover he'd be proud to show off.

But as long as he didn't have a boyfriend, Harry truly didn't see the point of outing himself. The Wizarding world truly didn't care who you loved, since procreation was no problem as long as you had access to magic. And potions.

No, Harry wasn't ashamed of who he was, he simply didn't want to open that can of worms until he absolutely had to.

Sighing gustily, Harry considered his options. There had to be some way for him to get out of this mess. The way he saw it, there were only two things he could do. String Ginny along, pretending to have feelings for her that he didn't have, or, somehow, get it through her thick head that he simply wasn't interested.

Alas, Ginny didn't listen to him any better than Ron and Hermione did.

"What to do, what to do..." Harry mused, pacing some more while chewing on a thumbnail. He had tried being kind to the girl, informing her he wasn't interested in her that way. When that didn't help, on the contrary, it had only made Ginny more determined to get her own way, Harry had tried being indifferent towards her, resulting in a spectacular blow-up from Ron who had accused him of ignoring his little sister, demanding to know if she wasn't good enough for Harry to spend time with.

Shaking his head, Harry still couldn't believe the thick-headedness of his best friend. Why couldn't Ron, for once in his life, see what he was doing to Harry with his pigheadedness? Why was it always Harry who had to conform to what other expected of him? Why couldn't the others bend their necks once in a while and change their ways for Harry's sake?

Pushing those thoughts and feelings aside, knowing that he could not afford to start doubting his friends now, Harry returned to the thorny problem that was Ginevra Weasley.

What else could he do to make Ginny back off that he hadn't already tried? A kind let down, indifference, a cold shoulder, all that he had tried and still Ginny was coming onto him as if her life depended on him dating her.

No, it was becoming blatantly clear to Harry that he needed to something else, something... shocking if he was to get through to the girl that he simply wasn't interested in becoming her boyfriend. But what? What could he possibly do to cause that effect?

"It's too bad I'm too much of a coward to just tell her to her face what I think of her and her scheming," Harry muttered to the air with a gusty sigh. "For that matter, it's too bad that I'm too timid and meek to tell the whole world where it can stick its demands and expectations," Harry added, feeling extremely daring to get that much off his chest. But really, ever since the Daily Prophet started calling him the Chosen One, the expectations had just become... ridiculous. Particularly in the light of the garbage the paper had written about him he previous year. Harry was this close to telling them all to kiss his arse.

Grumbling under his breath about the idiocy of the wizarding world, the black haired wizard suddenly froze mid-step, almost sending himself crashing to the floor.

There had been something... Something he had read once... Trying valiantly to chase down the vague memory that had suddenly popped into his mind only to just as swiftly pop out again, Harry stood frozen to the spot until, with a burst of euphoria, he suddenly remembered. It had been something he had read in one of the defence texts the Room of Requirement had provided him with the previous year. Something about a potions that was commonly used in the old days to cure a warrior in training from being shy and timid.

If the potion truly did what Harry thought it did... then it just might be the answer to all of his problems.

Breaking into a wide, beaming grin, Harry cast a quick Tempus. Taking note of the time, the teen decided that he did indeed have time to go looking for the book before curfew. With the way his luck had been running lately, the potion was probably insanely difficult to make, but right now Harry simply did not care. It didn't matter how difficult the blasted thing was to make, it was definitely worth the time and effort to look it up. Hopefully, he would manage to master it before he was old and grey.

Before he found himself bonded to one Ginerva Weasley.

With a shudder of disgust, Harry tore out of the abandoned classroom he'd taken refuge in. Any fate was better than that.