This story was written for Tasha in The DG Forum Fic Exchange - Summer 2013. It won "Best One Shot Overall", "Best Dialogue", "Best Kiss", "Best Fluff Scene" and "Most Fangirly"; but most importantly: Tasha loved it, and I hope you will too. :)

Quick disclaimer: I own nothing, save for my decidedly nerdy obsession with Draco and Ginny 4evarrrrrrr! XD

Many thanks to P, my RL bestie and now beta-reader, for looking this over for me both before and after the exchange. Enjoy!

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D&G

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Stood up by Larry Lyric.

Sitting at the elegant bar of a midtown Manhattan five-star hotel, alone save for her third glass of bourbon and the occasional pitying glance from Max the hirsute bartender, Ginny Weasley realized that she'd finally reached the low point of her life. It hit her at that precise moment: somewhere down the line she had become a thirty-one-year-old divorcee with a dead end office job and no romantic prospects to speak of. And if she was honest with herself (which she rarely was), she should probably have run home to England about six months ago, but she was stubbornly hanging on to her "independence".

"How the mighty have fallen," her ex-husband would have snarked if he could see her now. From what she occasionally heard from her mother, that bastard was doing great. Which was fine; it wasn't a competition to see who fared the best after they divorced. And thank Merlin for that, because she would have lost pathetically.

Luckily he wasn't here to see this sad spectacle - he was leagues away in London, along with her old life; she had kissed that world goodbye, and had been careful to remain on the periphery of Wizarding New York City on relocating here so many years ago. She was done with wizards.

Ginny had resorted to online dating as a way to meet Muggle men and learn the intricacies of Muggle dating. As luck would have it, it turned out that a significant percentage of the online dating population was expected to be somewhat neurotic and bordering on the bizarre, so she could disguise the gaps in her knowledge as harmless quirks. After three years she could say that two of her dates had been truly awful, to the point where she considered taking down her online profile permanently. One date had actually been nearly perfect, but she'd never heard from "Philip" after she wouldn't let him sleep with her at the end of the night. Most of her other encounters had simply been unremarkable.

And Larry, Larry had seemed more promising than most, despite the utter absurdity of his name, his deficiencies in grammar during live chat, and the fact that he wouldn't show her an actual picture of himself. His profile had proclaimed him to be "a fun loving music nerd who cooks a mean paella and can whistle using just his fingers". Whatever the hell that meant.

I like paella, she thought morosely, before turning her attention back to her drink. Last one...But then she'd said that two drinks ago - no matter.

Her senses were pleasantly dulled by the warm and spicy bourbon that still burned in the back of her throat and the underside of her tongue, and it took her a moment to realize that the man standing beside her was staring at her intently.

Ginny closed her eyes to fight a brief wave of dizziness before she risked a glance up at what would likely turn out to be a middle-aged creeper with a receding hairline.

Instead, her eyes met a pair of pale gray ones, and the impression this caused her was so great that it was like getting the air knocked out of her chest. In an odd moment of crossed wires and mixed brain signals, she felt herself grow hot and then cold, both tingling and numb, and suddenly found herself struggling to not topple off the plush velvet of the bar stool.

She stared in awe at the beautiful gray-eyed man, who looked back at her in turn in a way that was at once curious and disdainful. A thought so horrifying that it made her lightheaded crossed her mind…

Could it be that…

"...Larry?" she whispered hoarsely.

The man beside her remained impassive as his eyes shifted meaningfully from hers to the nearly empty glass of liquor that she clutched in her hand.

"Not a chance, Weasley," he said at last, in that clipped upper class British accent she remembered from their Hogwarts days, his voice like steel and honey.

They glanced at each other for a moment longer before he turned away, seeming to forget all about her as he looked around the room. Ginny was dimly aware of the fact that she was gaping, but she couldn't help it.

Draco bloody Malfoy.

It had been - what six, seven? - years since she'd last seen him, and only from a distance at some society event. He was somehow completely different and yet still the same.

And he was really here, standing right next to her. Looking inordinately hot in his obviously tailored three piece suit. The navy blue made the gray of his eyes more arresting. Or had his eyes always been like that? He wore his fine clothes with the graceful sort of carelessness common to the exceedingly rich, and his shoes appeared to have been diligently polished until they shone - probably by some over-eager House Elf.

Malfoy stood with his hands in his pockets, tall and imperially lean, his posture suggesting for all the world that he was comfortable with - and even expected - such a detailed inspection from whoever happened to be sitting beside him.

Sleek, silvery blond hair spilled over his collar, and was carefully coifed back, revealing a widow's peak. From where she stared in awe, Ginny couldn't make out the details of his face, but the lines of his profile, cheekbone and jaw were presented to her for a moment before he averted his face again. Her memory supplied the details her eyes couldn't at the moment: the perfect symmetry of his features, the haughty beauty of his face, the shapely lips.

In short, he looked like he'd just walked out of a catalogue, and it seemed like every woman in the room - and some of the men - had their gaze trained on him.

As if judging that the lounge had nothing better to offer by way of female company, the blond chose to seat himself by the still gaping redhead. He turned to her once more, arching a pale eyebrow and giving her a brief but all encompassing glance before turning to flag down the bartender.

In that moment Ginny finally regained the power of speech.

"Draco Malfoy!" she blurted accusingly. "What in the world are you doing here?" She was dimly aware of the fact that she sounded almost angry, as if there were some law banning him from sitting down in bars with normal people.

He ignored her, and his nonchalance at seeing her after all this time only enhanced her sense of surrealness. "Two of whatever the lady is having," he told the bartender.

"How did you find me?" she hissed, leaning in until she caught the subtle scent of his cologne. It was...really nice.

Malfoy gave her a very sidelong glance and snorted in a way that was completely incongruous with the way that he looked and the way he was dressed.

"Don't flatter yourself, Ginny Weasley." His long fingers were idly playing with a lighter he'd found on the counter. "I didn't come here for the likes of you. I'm here on business that just made me about a gazillion pounds richer." He sounded at once smug and matter-of-fact.

Max the bartender placed two fresh glasses of neat bourbon on the counter, and the blond stared at the golden contents of his glass quizzically before taking a tentative sip.

"Salazar's balls, Weasley," he swore, his voice low and now deliciously gravelly. He twisted his delicate features into a grimace as he set the glass down and gestured for the bartender with an imperious tap on the counter. "Ice."

She continued to dumbly stare, her heart still pounding loudly in her ears at the mere sight of him sitting beside her. Struggling with her sense of bafflement, she reached blindly for her fresh glass of bourbon and gulped down a mouthful.

Malfoy watched with disgusted admiration as she wiped her mouth with the back of her hand.

"Have you got a rusty pipe for an esophagus?"

Ginny shrugged noncommittally. "Maybe you're just a lightweight," she retorted, a defensive edge to her voice. And then she shook her head, incredulous. "I can't believe you're really here."

"I was about to say the same," Malfoy drawled, "this being an expensive place with a dress code." He turned to her suddenly, and his eyes were intent, searching. "What are you doing here?"

Ginny flinched, taken by surprise as ice-gray eyes assaulted hers. They locked gazes for a moment, and she tried her best to hold her own against him.

"I live here," she admitted finally, losing the battle and tearing her eyes away from his. "I've been living in New York for most of the past five years."

There. They've found me. Wizarding London in the form of Draco Malfoy, of all people. The past and the world at large.

Malfoy seemed to absorb this information along with the alcohol swirling in his glass. After a moment he turned to her again, eyes narrowed, unreadable as ever.

"So you live in New York. And you're sitting by yourself in this hotel bar, getting drunk in your spike heels, fishnet stockings and little black dress." His underlying meaning seemed to hang in the air, eluding her nimbly until he cocked his head to the side and shot at her:

"Are you a prostitute?"

Ginny snorted bourbon up her nose and doubled over in a coughing fit. She would have gladly smacked him across his chiseled face, but was too busy trying to get some oxygen into her lungs at the moment.

He had the grace to pat her back lightly, and offered her a napkin as she continued to cough hysterically.

"No, you tosser! I'm not a prostitute," she managed after some moments, her hands balled into fists against the counter. "How dare you, you vicious little ferret?"

"Too bad you can't Bat-Bogey Hex me here," he observed dryly, casting the Muggles around them an almost pitying glance. "And anyway, if you were a prostitute you probably wouldn't tell me, would you?"

"For the last time, Malfoy - I AM NOT A PROSTITUTE!"

The people at the table closest turned to look at her curiously as Malfoy's amused little smirk widened into an amused little grin.

Ginny blushed and lowered her voice as she edged closer to the blond. "I am a writer, I'll have you know. I freelance and I also do some copy editing now and then."

"Do you really? And how do you pay the bills?" he inquired dryly. "It's not like you got that much money in the divorce settlement. So says Rita Skeeter, in any case."

The flush in Ginny's cheeks deepened, and the three and a half glasses of whiskey she'd consumed tonight sloshed around in her otherwise empty stomach. "I'm... an insurance underwriter," she admitted softly, as a single hot tear slid unexpectedly

down her cheek, "who just got stood up by Larry Lyric."

Hiding her face in her hands, she began to cry quietly as Draco Malfoy looked on in silence.

"So go on and tell Harry!" she blubbered suddenly through her fingers, startling the blond beside her. "Tell him all about how I've failed in life!"

"Contrary to popular opinion, I give many fucks about Harry Potter," Malfoy began, as he searched their immediate vicinity for another napkin. "So I plan to owl him immediately to inform him that he's finally one-upped you in life, Weasley."

"It's true. He has one-upped me." This thought made Ginny cry harder, her shoulders shaking and tears sliding down her face one after the other, but she didn't make a sound.

Malfoy said nothing, but he must have regretted his role in her little sobbing fit, for a moment later she felt the warmth and softness of his hand on her bare shoulder, patting her gruffly as if she were an ungainly puppy who had made a mess on the carpet. She immediately leaned into him, clutching at the collar of his finely cut suit. Malfoy's body tensed, but he held her in silence until her tears finally subsided.

"I'm actually glad to see you, Malfoy," she confided against his shoulder in a whisper. "I thought I wanted to escape from everything, but the truth is I've been so alone…"

"I should have known you'd be a maudlin drunk, Weasley," he commented, but there was no bite in his tone.

Ginny laughed in spite of herself, and allowed herself to hold onto him for just a little longer. It felt so...good. She secretly indulged in the warmth of him, the feel and weight of his arm around her, and the heady scent of his cologne. Eventually she drew away, daring to meet his gaze briefly.

Malfoy looked at her speculatively through those cold pale eyes of his, and Ginny felt herself blush. She wiped at her face with the back of her hand, thinking she must look quite a sight. But she didn't dare go to the loo to look in the mirror, for fear of him disappearing while she was gone.

"Well," she said finally, taking another sip of her drink. "How have you been? Tell me about your life."

He pursed his lips for a heartbeat, then bowed his head in acquiescence as if suddenly deciding to actually answer.

"A few years ago I took over the international branch of my family's company, which means I travel a lot. I've been based out of Zurich, but I'm thinking of moving back to London."

Ginny nodded for him to continue, and was surprised when he actually did.

"I expanded into the Muggle sector, which is where the big Galleons are - only no one else seems to have figured that out yet, so all the more dollars and pounds and euros for me." Here he gave a wolfish grin that reminded her of her brother Bill somehow - she found herself grinning back mindlessly. "Astoria and I got divorced, to no one's surprise," he went on without a trace of irony. "And I've taken up sailing." He fell silent and swirled his whiskey around the glass before setting it down on the counter again.

Ginny processed this information for a moment, unsure of what to say. Then, "I'm sorry about your divorce."

Malfoy gave a graceful shrug. "It was a mistake from the beginning."

"Huh. Don't I know what that's like..." the redhead sighed and drank more bourbon.

xXx

"Pets?"

"A cat named Hugo. You?"

"I had a goldfish. It died."

"Tragic. What did you do with it?"

"I flushed it down the toilet."

"People really do that?"

"Yeah."

"Did it have a name?"

"Leon. How long are you here for?"

"I'm leaving in a bit. My Portkey's set for tonight."

"...Oh."

xXx

Draco Malfoy had cause to know that Weasleys could hold their liquor. During Blaise's stint as the unofficial boyfriend (read: fuck buddy) of the insufferable bint known as Hermione Granger, the blond had somehow gotten roped into a game of billiards against Bill and Percy Weasley at a pub, and the brothers had proceeded to drink the Slytherins right under the table. The details of that unlikely night were spotty in his mind, but Draco distinctly recalled being swung over Blaise's shoulder as they Apparated to their flat at the end of the night.

The youngest of the Weasley clan was no exception to the rule, the Slytherin quickly realized. She'd had about a gallon of bourbon and was still sitting upright, whereas Draco was starting to feel pleasantly buzzed after just one and a half glasses.

If he was honest with himself, he really was a bit of a lightweight, accustomed to drinking beer and wine rather than whiskey and the like. Now nearing the end of his second round, he longed for a nice, vibrant red - something fruity from California, maybe - but he'd be damned if he switched to something lighter than she was having without her switching first.

"Listen, Weasley," he began carefully, pretending to inspect the drink list, "how about something different this round... Something like, oh…wine?"

"Whassamatter?" she demanded, golden-brown eyes narrowing with suspicion. "Your delicate Malfoy organs can't handle the hard stuff?"

Max the bartender - whom Draco had realized early on was in all likelihood a Squib - made a sound suspiciously like a snort, but his face became expressionless once the blond cast an annoyed glare in his direction.

"Whatever," he dismissed, feigning nonchalance. "Anyway... What do you do for fun around here?"

"Dance!" she exclaimed immediately, clapping her hands together with childlike excitement. "Let's go clubbing!" She actually tugged on the sleeve of his jacket with both hands, entreating him. Draco found the corners of his mouth turning upwards but quickly hid his grin of amusement.

"Overruled," he said tonelessly. "The last thing I want to do is attend some plebeian club with the likes of you."

"Shaaa," she muttered, releasing her grip on his clothes. And then she rounded on him suddenly. "Don't go anywhere Malfoy! I really, really need to pee. I'll be back! Wait for me! OK?" Without waiting for his answer, she stood and ambled in the direction of the lobby with a surprisingly steady step.

Draco watched her go, his eyes latching onto her firm bottom, which was generously outlined by the stretchy material of her dress when she walked. No panty line, he noted approvingly.

Thong? Commando?

He realized that he could probably find out, if he really wanted to know. Which, of course he did. Ginny Weasley had always been a hot little number, even back in school, where her trashy family and her blood traitor status made dating her openly an impossibility for any Slytherin. Who'd be so inclined. Not that he had been.

He half-swiveled in his bar stool, thinking of the moment when he'd spotted her sitting at the bar. A witch among Muggles, someone from his own kind. An outsider, a wolf in sheep's skin - just like him. What was more, here was someone who had known him once, who had known his name and important details about his past.

He'd left London because he'd longed for an escape. He loved to travel, and he liked living in the infinitely more civilize Zurich. But after years of relative anonymity he had become so used to this generic identity as a young billionaire and business maverick that he sometimes felt tempted to forget who and what he'd been - and it felt like losing a piece of himself. Being confronted by the warm brown eyes of the Weasley girl had given him back a sense of himself as Draco Malfoy, somehow.

Would the real Draco Malfoy please stand up?

She'd drawn him like a lightening rod, and even now he couldn't understand why. He'd sent his minions away, and had delayed his Portkey with the excuse of treating himself to a drink after closing the all-important New York merger. He'd approached her at the bar, his heart irrationally beating harder, faster. The spark of recognition in her eyes as she'd turned to him had filled him with an odd sense of wellbeing and calm, as if he'd suddenly been firmly anchored after being fettered about by unpredictable winds. The feeling remained, even now. He realized that he was actually enjoying himself.

Glancing at his Panerai wristwatch, Draco noted that it was half past - he was supposed to Portkey to Zurich in another ten minutes.

"Don't go anywhere!" she'd half commanded, half pleaded.

For reasons he wasn't willing to examine just yet, in that very instant Draco Malfoy decided to comply.

xXx

"Ready?" he inquired, holding out his fist.

"Um, I was born ready," she informed him, holding out her own fist, her jaw set with determination.

"Right... Rock. Paper. Scissors...Go!"

"HA!" The redhead cackled triumphantly, banging her finger scissors into his paper hand in slow motion.

He scowled...

"Two out of three, then..."

…He winced in dismay when the same result followed.

"Why would you pick scissors again?" he groused.

"Because I knew you would pick paper again, genius."

The blond sighed wearily. "Fine, you win. Bourbon it is." Turning to the bartender, Draco made an imperious revolving motion with his index finger.

"Yes, sir-" Hairy Max discreetly winked at Ginny. "-Another round of bourbon, coming right up."

xXx

Closing time, but neither seemed inclined to part ways.

"I just...really, really want to keep drinking," Draco admitted, signing his name on the rather large check with a flourish. "Where can we go?"

The redhead considered. "You do have a room here, right?" she said finally.

Draco turned his head in her direction, his face carefully devoid of expression, though in all truth something had quickened in his blood.

"And what if I did?" he inquired, all the while cursing himself for checking out of his penthouse suite earlier in the evening.

"It would probably have a minibar?"

"And you'd want to go there?"

Ginny shrugged. "Sure."

Draco nodded. "Alright, then. Wait here. I have to use the loo."

xXx

He'd been downgraded to the Presidential Suite, which while smaller than his previous accommodations, still managed to elicit a gaping stare from the Weasley girl as she kicked off her shoes and looked around.

Draco's eyes took in the way the clingy material of her dress hugged her curves in all the right places. It had a halter cut and ended just above her knees, flatteringly displaying her full, pert breasts and the elegant shape of her calves. He could make out through the material of her stockings that her toes were painted red.

"Nice digs, Malfoy," she remarked, flashing him a smile.

"I suppose," he replied, raising his eyes to hers as he slipped out of the jacket of his suit.

The girl returned his gaze, and he felt his pulse quicken when she lowered her eyes down his toned, lean frame. The atmosphere had changed in an instant - or maybe it had really changed the moment the words "your room" had fallen from her cherry red lips.

"Like what you see?" he inquired.

"Yes," she said simply.

Draco rolled the sleeves of his shirt up to his elbows, his eyes never leaving hers. He walked up to her slowly and deliberately, allowing his gaze to brazenly run down the length of her body.

"And?" Another step and he was standing just in front of her, less than an arm's length away. "Do you intend to do something about it?"

She surprised him by hooking her fingers in his belt, pulling him towards her gently but firmly until the front of his body was pressed against hers. He could feel the heat of her, and his gaze went from her wide, brown eyes down to her mouth. His mind was racing ahead, already anticipating the moment when he would lower his mouth over hers, slipping his tongue through those plump, slightly parted lips. He felt himself harden, his body tense and ready; he knew she felt it, felt him, and her teeth caught her bottom lip in just the way he wished to do.

He could already taste her. Sweet and salty and spicy and salty. Bourbon and Ginny Weasley.

But something... Something was off, and it had been nagging at the back of his head from the moment he'd booked the hotel room in secret.

Maybe it was the way she was subtly swaying where she stood, the too-red hue that colored her cheeks, or the fact that he could still smell whiskey on her breath. She could fake it better than most, but the truth of it was that Ginny Weasley was completely and utterly smashed.

Draco pushed aside the thought of her whimpering and writhing beneath him, and instead imagined her lying in an empty hotel bed the next morning, waking up to the reality that she'd been fucked by her former Hogwarts nemesis and left to do the Apparation of shame on her own.

He had done the same to countless girls over the years and had hardly been troubled by it. But looking into her large, bright eyes, so like the color of warm honey, Draco saw something in her that he didn't wish to defile. He remembered her crying softly against his shoulder, confessing her loneliness and her pain. It suddenly seemed imperative that he not consign Ginny Weasley to the ranks of nameless women that he had casually used and discarded during his travels.

Gathering every last bit of his resolve, he placed his hands on hers, unclasping them from his belt.

"How about a glass of Bordeaux?" He cleared his throat, turning with uncharacteristic abruptness towards the well stocked bar. "I know there's a bottle of Chateau Margaux around here somewhere…Ah, here it is."

Her eyebrows were raised in surprise, her expression reflecting confusion and perhaps a bit of hurt, but he pretended not to notice. He deftly uncorked the wine and poured himself a generous amount, pouring half as much into her glass.

"Come," he commanded a bit gruffly, taking both glasses and leading the way to the outdoor terrace. His body was still humming with electricity, like a violin string wound too tightly, and that too familiar tingle at the base of his spine seemed to have become heightened as if in protest, its warmth spreading down his limbs, down the length of his hardness. He knew that his sudden chivalry would die a premature death if he didn't get her out of the room - away from beds, couches, chairs, or hard surfaces.

He felt her hesitate only briefly, and then she followed after him without a word.

xXx

"Oliver Wood is by far a better Keeper than Fitney ever was - admit it." She was leveling a finger in the general direction of his ear.

"I admit to nothing," he replied calmly. "Fitney is a legend. Wood...he's good."

The redhead snorted, and proceeded to knock her glass of wine over onto the terrace floor. A stream of ruby red liquid spilled along the clay colored tiles, and Ginny watched its trajectory with what seemed like detached interest.

"Ooops. Anyway. I really liked Max, our bartender."

He casually flicked his wand at the spilled wine. "Because he reminded you of a prepubertal Hagrid?"

Ginny laughed merrily, throwing her head forward until the tips of her hair brushed the floor.

Draco secretly congratulated himself on having correctly estimated her level of inebriation.

She'd sulked for a few minutes, but soon seemed to entirely forget his snubbing of her unspoken invitation to bed. They'd continued as before, mutually ignoring the fact that not too long ago they'd been standing face to face, about to rip the clothes off each other until Draco decided to develop a set of morals.

I'm going to regret doing that for all time, he thought to himself, shaking his head as he noted the way the hem of her dress rode halfway up her toned thigh.

They sat on the floor of the terrace, Draco with his legs crossed under him in lotus position, and Ginny with her gorgeous legs spread out in front of her, dainty feet crossed at the ankles. The city spread out before them, bright and distant, its lights overpowering the glow of the stars, which floated invisibly beneath the velvety blue clouds. He turned to her then, feeling suddenly glad for her company. A sight like this was as beautiful as it was crushing when taken in alone.

"Malfoy," she murmured, her tone hushed.

Draco turned to her, and their eyes connected like magnets. Warm brown eyes were soft under the pale moonlight, and he saw something like understanding in them.

xXx

It felt like it was later than that, but in reality it was just shy of 1:00 AM. They'd left their steel and glass tower in search of food. Now they stood - or swayed, in Ginny's case - by the food vendor's cart on Seventh Avenue and West 56th street, stuffing their faces on their respective dinners: falafels with yellow rice and a chicken gyro.

A guitar strummed in the distance, and an explosion of laughter from the nearby group of young Muggles pierced the air.

Maybe because he was halfway drunk and it had been hours since he'd last eaten anything, or maybe because he was eating this with Ginny Weasley under the most ridiculous of circumstances - for whatever reason this simple street dish was one of the most delicious and satisfying things Draco had eaten in years.

Afterwards they shared a piece of baklava from the same plate. Ginny managed to smear her face with honey and bits of phylo dough, and looking back it was amazing that she'd managed the gyro without making a mess of herself. Despite her wine knocking incident earlier, she really had a remarkably steady hand for someone who was that drunk - and as established, she had by far more tolerance for alcohol than he did.

Draco handed the redhead a napkin and watched with some amusement as she tried to wipe honey and crumbs off the clean spots on her face.

"Here," he said finally, taking the napkin from her and gently wiping her chin and the corner of her mouth. Her full, bowed lips looked red and slightly swollen, as if she'd just been passionately kissed.

For one crazy moment he felt the urge to do just that, right then and there, but the rational part of his brain prevailed. He averted his gaze from her lips and found her already looking at him almost thoughtfully through eyes of dark gold.

With her spiked three inch heels she was not quite as tall as he was, and she now edged closer until they were almost nose to eyes. He held her gaze and avoided looking down at the rest of her.

"Your hair is longer and your shoulders are broader," she said quietly.

"Thanks, Weasley," he replied dryly, trying to mask the fact that he was unnerved, but spoiling it by taking a step back. "Want some ice cream?"

"What kind?" Ginny wanted to know, brushing some of that bright red hair away from her clear, smooth forehead. Draco was momentarily distracted by the motion, and had to tell himself to focus and stop noticing how hot Ginny was.

Tearing his eyes away from her, he looked around and quickly found what he was looking for.

"Come." His hand reached for hers without a thought, and he drew her to the ice cream truck parked some metres down the road from the food cart. "Giant Vanilla Sandwich, Strawberry Shortcake, King Cone," he read to her from the menu posted on the side of the truck, oblivious of the way the women standing in line behind them were staring at him in awe and giggling amongst themselves.

"King Cone." Ginny shifted from one foot to the other, nearly falling over in the process. Draco curved his arm around her waist absently as he fished in his breast pocket for his wallet, his brain focusing on the task at hand as his body became painfully aware of the witch's proximity to him, her warmth and slightly flowery - and yes, boozy, smell.

He hoped to Merlin this bloke took plastic money like the falafel man, otherwise they'd be screwed. All he had were Galleons, not having bothered to exchange for more Muggle money.

His mind went back to the moment when, completely by chance, he'd happened to look Ginny's way in the exact instant when the couple standing behind her had moved away, giving Draco an unobstructed view of a head of waist length flaming red hair and creamy white skin glowing under the chandelier lights. Her back had been to him, but he'd recognized her immediately.

If he'd been looking the other way, if those people hadn't moved when they did, if Ginny had been in the loo, or sitting not at the bar, but at one of the tables…. The thought gave Draco a profound sense of uneasiness, but he didn't care to examine why.

"Mastercard?" he asked the ice cream vendor.

xXx

The night air of late summer was cool and crisp, and the bright lights of the city cast an almost supernatural glow over the streets and faces. Ginny's hair seemed to glow a brighter red, hanging in unbroken waves down her back.

He gradually became aware of the eyes of people on them. Curious, but not probing. People seemed almost glad to see them together, their eyes trailing after the two of them as they walked hand in hand. And that small hand was warm and soft, and it seemed to fit perfectly in his, as if it should have always been there. Again he felt strangely anchored. Or maybe he was drunk.

They sat together on a bus stop bench, Ginny engrossed in her cone, and Draco with his legs crossed, drinking from his bottle of water. All the while he watched her covertly, the corners of his mouth stubbornly curving upwards in spite of his best efforts to remain expressionless. He could feel her shoulder pressed against his.

She turned to him and held out her cone, nodding encouragement. "It's good."

He shook his head.

"It's rude to say no," Ginny declared, holding the cone more insistently to his face until she accidentally smeared ice cream on his cheek.

Draco sighed. "You're an annoying drunk, Weasley."

Ginny giggled. Then she wiped the ice cream away with her hand - and licked it. "Nom, nom, nom!"

Draco wrinkled his nose, curiously intrigued. "Gross, dude."

The redhead laughed again, and this time succeeded in dropping a gob of chocolate and vanilla ice cream directly onto his shoe.

The blond looked from her to the defiled piece of footwear, his face comically twisted into an expression of horror. "You ruined my shoe," he murmured incredulously.

Ginny rolled her eyes. "Bah! As if you couldn't afford another pair, you miser!"

"I can't believe you actually said "bah" right now. And it's not about the money, you twit. These are handmade by a Muggle in Florence," he informed her calmly, and with undeniable hauteur. "He's like the Olivander of shoes, and he's almost a hundred. He could be drawing his last breath as we speak."

"Oh-em-gee, I am so sorry I ruined your shoe whisperer's final masterpiece," Ginny retorted mockingly.

The blond shook his head in derision. "Unbelievable."

"Look!" the girl said suddenly, instantly forgetting their spat as she pointed at the giant billboard a few blocks away from where they sat. "Look at that picture."

Draco turned to find the image of a sullen looking male model clad in extra small orange velvet briefs, and with what appeared to be a spiked metal dog collar around his neck.

"What about it?" he asked, noting nothing amiss for a Muggle billboard ad.

"Look at the letters," Ginny said, smiling effusively. "It's D and G."

"The Muggle brand, you mean? Dolce and-"

"-Draco and Ginny," she cut in firmly, her eyes bright. "That's what it means, the D and G together. It's like it's our brand, isn't it? D-G. We should get matching tattoos or something, to remember tonight."

"Psssh. When hell freezes over, you silly witch," he retorted absently, wondering if he could get away with casting a Scouring Charm on his shoe, what with all the Muggles milling about. Didn't people need to sleep in this town?

Ginny waited for him to meet her gaze and then pouted a little, but he guided the ice cream towards her mouth and succeeded in distracting her. His mind created all sorts of interesting pictures for him as he watched Ginny work the ice cream cone, but he kept that to himself. Bad Draco, he thought as he loosened the knot in his tie.

Once the redhead was done with her cone she wordlessly held her hands out for Draco to pour water over them. Rubbing her palms together, she dried them on her dress and then opened and closed them to make sure they were no longer sticky.

"Good?" the blond inquired amusedly.

She nodded.

"Alright. Where to, Gabbana?"

The sound of Ginny's laughter rang light and cheerful, like a clear bell. She seemed about to reply, when suddenly a loud, multicolored vehicle, packed to the brim with people dancing with wild abandon, came to a stop in front of them. Its lights seemed to flash in every color of the rainbow, making those aboard look like psychedelic hallucinations rather than real people.

"YO, HOT STUFF!" A plump middle aged woman wearing a tiara and way too much hairspray called out to Draco from within the vehicle. She was nearly hanging out of the window, and even from where he was sitting he could practically smell the alcohol in her breath. "Get on! Come on, hurry!"

"What in the name of hell is that?" Draco observed the vehicle in bafflement, but Ginny was already grabbing him by the hand and pulling him towards the...contraption.

"It's a party bus!" she exclaimed happily. "I've always wanted to ride one. Come on, hot stuff! They're opening the door for us."

The Slytherin allowed himself to be dragged into the thing, and he had the distinct feeling that later on he was going to regret that decision - or indecision, as it were. But he already knew that there would be no arguing with Ginny.

As soon as they stepped inside the bus Draco realized that he'd been ambushed. He was surrounded by a group of raucously loud, shrieking, laughing women, who appeared to range from ages twenty to sixty-five, and who were all dressed in matching bright pink tracksuits made from some shiny material. They pulled him into their dance circle, one of them shoving a loaded shot glass into his hands.

Having immediately realized that he would need more liquor to get through this, Draco downed the first shot without preamble.

"Are you a model?" a youngish blonde asked him in awe, her eyes wide as she looked him up and down.

He placed his empty shot glass on a circulating tray. "Er...no."

Draco had briefly lost track of Ginny, but as he began to twirl the women around in turns (they had actually formed a line of sorts to dance with him), he himself swaying from side to side half-heartedly, he caught sight of the redhead to his right, in conference with the tiara clad woman who had called out to him.

Soon they had formed a conga line.

The blond sighed inwardly, trapped between two women who had earned the right to call him "the delicious piece of English meat in their sandwich" by practically fighting off several of the other would-be contenders. Draco Malfoy was no stranger to being objectified by women, but this had long moved into the realm of scary.

As the conga line twisted to the left, he felt a pair of hands fondle each of his butt cheeks.

Please be Ginny, he fervently prayed to all the gods that could hear, horrified by whatever the alternative was. He turned to find a woman who had to be around Narcissa Malfoy's age grinning at him sheepishly, and realized that he had no idea how to even deal with that.

"Take it easy, madam," he rebuked, removing her hands from his person. Straightening the knot in his tie, he tried his best to walk away in a dignified manner as the woman stared at him blankly, her mouth in the form of an O.

The music was preposterous, but catchy, and almost everyone aboard was either dancing or shaking some part of their body in time to the beat. Draco noticed most of them were women, and the one who appeared to be the leader had a sign draped around her torso that proclaimed her to be the"Bride 2 Be!" while instructing the reader to "Buy Me A Shot!". On closer inspection he realized that the sparkly tiara she wore had been tastefully decorated with two shot glasses dangling on either side of the woman's head. And on second glance those balloons hanging from the ceiling and being tossed around were definitely penis shaped.

As he watched, Ginny bee-lined for what he supposed could be called the dance floor. The people seemed to part for her as she swung her hips and her shoulders in opposite directions, swaying from side to side, backwards and forwards, in a way that Draco found weirdly enticing. She shuffled, shimmied and turned, waving her arms about, and soon had some of the other women surrounding her in a circle, clapping and cheering her on.

"Girl got moves," a by-stander commented, and Draco smiled at the ridiculousness of it all. The beat changed and the party-busers cheered their approval. The lights flashed with such intensity that Draco felt certain that if he'd been an epileptic he'd currently be a convulsing, drooling heap on the floor of the party bus.

"WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LI-AYE-AYE-AYE-AYE-FE?" a famous Muggle singer demanded stridently, as the beat broke down and the lights flashed green, purple, red and white. Ginny's hair seemed a living thing around her, and he watched, entranced, as she continued to sway rhythmically and seductively, eyes closed, lips slightly parted.

The beat changed again, to an escalating, more synthetic rhythm. "Love the way I feel, streets replaced with fields," a male singer declared. By this time Ginny had found a pole in the middle of the bus, and had wrapped herself around it with the agility of a jungle cat.

She began to sway and undulate in a way that didn't necessarily have anything to do with the music currently playing. Draco's eyes were glued to her form, to the curve of her waist, the rise and fall of her heaving breasts, and that hair swishing around like a flaming halo.

As he watched, a well put together male Muggle approached her, dancing behind her and eventually placing his hand on her waist as he drew her towards him in one suave motion.

The wizard was beside them in a flash, his body between Ginny's and the interloper, who opened his mouth to protest but was silenced by whatever he saw in Draco's eyes; without a word, the man turned on his heel and casually sashayed his way to the other end of the party bus.

Draco was grudgingly impressed - this was expert level shit.

Ginny's hands were braced against Draco's chest and she continued to swing and sway from side to side. She opened her eyes and looked up at him mischievously, completely unsurprised to find him there. She trailed her fingers along his silver-gray tie, tugging at it until it slipped out of his vest. He watched as she hooked her fingers in his belt, using it to steady herself as she shimmied down the front of Draco's body, moving her hips, breasts and butt this way and that in a classic stripper move. Draco stared in awe, and the people around them voiced their approval in the form of catcalls and cheers.

For what seemed like the hundredth time tonight he regretted passing up on her unspoken - albeit drunken - invitation to what would no doubt have been a night of wild, hot fuckery. He had a feeling that Ginny Weasley's well developed inner kink would surface with minimum provocation. Draco could perfectly well envision a romp with the redhead ending with bite marks, bruises and perhaps rope burns.

Lost as he was in his little fantasy, it took him a moment to realize that the girl wasn't getting up because - well, she couldn't. She was practically on her knees, giggling hysterically.

"Merlin have mercy." Draco pulled her up by the hands, and when that didn't work, scooped her up under her armpits like a toddler. She clung to him, still laughing, and he could feel the vibrations of her laughter in his own body.

The beat changed again. "We're safe and sound," new male voices stated serenely, and trumpets seemed to blare all around them. His hands found her waist and held her in place, as she wrapped her arms around his neck. It felt so good to hold her, soft and warm and fragrant in his arms, with her cheek pressed against his. For a moment it seemed like all the noise, the lights and the multitude of bodies swaying around them had disappeared, and it was just the two of them. Ginny drew away then, her arms still around his neck. They locked eyes and he felt something like electricity coursing through him, as everything in the vicinity of his stomach plummeted down to his feet.

Her supple, cherry-red lips moved, and there seemed to be an urgency in her eyes - but he couldn't hear her over the music. He lowered his ear to her mouth, and felt her warm breath on the shell of his ear, making him shiver as she whispered…

"HELP ME! I really need to PEE!"

How romantic.

Draco located the bathroom and pointed her in its direction. He followed at some distance, waiting for her to come out while disdainfully scoping their surroundings. Someone offered him a cookie shaped like a woman's bottom in thongs. He accepted it without comment, and actually ate the thing. That was when he noticed that a man and a woman to his left were casually snorting a white powdery substance directly from the surface of one of the speakers.

Classy.

The last thing Draco needed was to get caught up in a party bus drug bust when the ink from his multi-million Galleon merger deal hadn't even dried.

Ginny emerged from the bathroom in that moment and her face broke into a smile when she found him standing guard outside.

"Time to go, Ginny," he said absently, without realizing he'd used her given name.

"WHAT?" she looked up at his lips and held a hand to her ear.

Draco pointed to the exit. The witch opened her mouth to protest, but then seemed to think better of it and nodded. He turned her around gently, and began to steer them through the crowd, his hands firmly on her hips.

"If our love's insanity why are you my clarity?" a new female voice woefully wailed, as the music faded into silence only to rise up suddenly with renewed force, reverberating so loudly from the speakers that he could feel it rattle in his internal organs.

"Christ," Draco muttered, wishing he could hex every single one of the speakers into oblivion.

They reached the vicinity of the exit and waited for the next red light, Draco still lightly holding a blessedly subdued Ginny. There was a faint sheen of sweat on her skin, and glitter dusting on her shoulder. Again he had the distinct feeling of completeness, of being anchored.

"WATCH THIS!" she suddenly commanded, freeing herself from his arms, and the Slytherin mentally braced himself as he took a cautious step back.

But then she reached back and, grabbing him by the waist, pulled him to her with both hands. Bum firmly pressed against his lower body, she wiggled and shimmied her way down until she was level with the ground in front of him, only this time she was able to maintain her balance. Turning her head slightly, she glanced back up at him with that mischievous glint in her eye, her lips curved into a smirk worthy of a Malfoy.

Draco felt a little thrill go down his spine, and busied himself doing the 9 timetables before anything could go amiss in his lower body.

The redhead popped her shapely butt out and rose with a flourish, unassisted this time. Turning to face him, she swished her glorious hair back - slapping the person behind her in the face with it in the process. Draco winced and apologetically waved at the middle aged cheek-pincher from before.

Oblivious, Ginny cocked a hand on her hip and stared up at him in triumph.

"Well done," he complimented ironically. "Full marks."

"Impressed, Malfoy?" she purred.

"Girl got moves," he replied in his best American accent, and stuck his tongue out at her when she raised her eyebrows in surprise.

Ginny laughed. "Malfoy, you're such a weirdo."

"The pot calling the kettle black."

xXx

They emerged onto the sidewalk and watched as the party bus pulled away, music blaring and lights still flashing. Women of all ages were pressed up against the windows, waving and shouting at Draco to come back.

"Take cover," he told Ginny, as a lacy black thong sailed from an open window, missing his head by inches.

"Good aim," Ginny observed approvingly, as she waved to the Bride 2 Be!

Once the party bus was gone, a hushed silence descended over the deserted street, which was luminous under the artificial glow of the skyscrapers.

Draco looked down at the redhead and found that she was already looking up at him, smiling broadly and displaying a row of even, white teeth. Her hand was in his, and neither was sure how that had happened. She also held a surprisingly anatomically accurate penis shaped balloon in her other hand, and neither was sure how that had happened.

It was then she discovered that her fishnet stockings were torn.

"Hold this," she told him, extending the phallic shaped balloon towards him testicles-first.

"Like hell I will."

Ginny rolled her eyes. Holding the balloon between her chin and her chest - again provoking all sorts of interesting pictures to flash in Draco's brain - she bent over and skillfully slid her stockings off, leaning against her blond companion in order to slip in and out of her heels when needed. Once the stockings were off, she rolled them up and tossed them into the nearby disposal bin.

The wizard beside her nodded to himself, impressed.

"All done," she announced, and without missing a beat she reached for his hand again, intertwining their fingers as they walked.

xXx

"So you had that handbag stashed in between your boobs this whole time?"

"Of course. Where else did you think I would put it?"

"Uh… never mind. You were saying you wear reading glasses."

"Huh? Yeah. I wing it most of the time unless I'm sitting at my desk or reading a book. But my eyes are kind of blurry and I can't make out what this map thing says."

"Ah, you have a smartphone."

"Um, excuse me but how would you even know what a smartphone is?"

"Because I own one? See? This one hasn't even come out on the market yet. See how light it is? Close your mouth, it's not polite to gape like that. I'm a modern businessman, didn't you know?"

"You sure have changed, Draco Malfoy."

"Observant as ever, Weasley."

xXx

"Ah-ha! I totally know where we are now."

Draco arched a pale eyebrow, but said nothing.

"Won't need that stupid map, after all," she went on, oblivious. "I can't believe I left those blasted glasses at home... I hope I didn't lose them again..." Ginny trailed off, her attention shifting to the persistent blinking of her phone. "It's probably a text. My eyes are still blurry, can you read it for me, Draco?

The blond obliged, taking the small Muggle device from her hands with the care of one who is not accustomed to handling such things. Ginny smiled in spite of herself, impressed with Draco's willingness to tread where most wizards feared, even going so far as to owning his own phone. Modern businessman, indeed.

"It's from 9 o'clock yesterday," he announced, unaware of Ginny's scrutiny. "Oh-ho… It's from Larry."

cat wait 2 meet u virginia

Draco looked up at her, his mouth actually hanging open for a moment, and then proceeded to burst out laughing.

"Cat wait -" he gasped with laughter, clutching his flat midsection with one hand and raising two fingers with the other "- TWO meet you...Merlin's pants..."

Ginny snorted and shook her head.

"And Virginia?" Draco went on once he'd recovered sufficiently, raising his eyebrows at her.

She flashed a smug little smile. "Please - everyone knows you don't give out your real name online, Malfoy."

"Well excuse me for not being the leading expert on the mating habits of Muggles," snarked he of the not-yet-on-the-market-smartphone. "In any case, half of your acquaintances probably think your name is Virginia to begin with. Not much of a disguise, is it?

"Whatever," the redhead shot back, scowling. "How come I didn't get this text earlier? I was already at the bar at that time, and I kept checking my phone."

"Hmm." Draco nodded thoughtfully. "I think that magic throws Muggle phones for a loop sometimes. It's happened to me, so I rarely use my device to text. Email isn't usually as affected, so it's the safer bet."

"Quite the expert," Ginny muttered. "Is there another text?"

The blond smirked at her before turning his attention back to her phone. Then: "Oh my god…"

grl u whack

y did u blow me off

"What the hell is this?" Draco demanded hotly, his initial amusement replaced by a growing sense of indignation. "This tosser never heard of a punctuation mark? And seriously, 'Y'?"

"Girl, you whack," Ginny mouthed experimentally, as she took the device from him and slipped it in her purse. "Girl-you-whack."

"I can't with this," Draco said finally, covering his eyes with his fingers.

Ginny bit back a giggle, amused by his distress. "His emails aren't this heinous," she offered as she performed a Reduction Charm on her handbag. "In fact, they're normal by Muggle standards. I guess he doesn't have autocorrect on his phone. Anyway, what I don't get is why he thinks I blew him off...maybe we went to different bars?"

"I'd count that as a blessing," the Slytherin said, shuddering.

He watched with unwavering attention as Ginny slid the now tiny handbag under the neckline of her dress, turning to the side - in a gesture that was more modest in intent than it was effective - to... adjust?... her beautiful breasts briefly with both hands.

The mystery of the disappearing handbag was now fully solved...leaving him with more questions.

"Er...Look Weasley," he murmured, tearing his gaze away from her cleavage, "I'm starving. Take me somewhere where we can eat something before I collapse."

xXx

They found a 24-hour diner and seated themselves with the decidedly unglamorous-post clubbing crowd. Draco stood out like a glittering unicorn amidst a herd of wet donkeys, completely out of place with his aristocratic mannerisms, tailored suit, and handmade Italian shoes.

Apparently he was hungry enough to not take umbrage at being surrounded by the tackier inhabitants of Manhattan while he breakfasted on the diner's $3.99 Early Bird Special: pancakes, eggs done in any style, hash-browns and bottomless coffee.

Ginny shook her head, smiling to herself as she reconciled the image she'd held of Draco Malfoy, bouncing ferret and all-around git of Slytherin, with the person sitting across from her now.

As she ate her Belgian waffles and sipped orange juice through a straw, the last of her buzz faded away, and the drunken fog that had pleasantly dulled her brain quickly dissipated. With a heavy heart and a knot in her throat, she realized that she would soon be saying goodbye to Draco, and that their amazing night would quickly become nothing more than a memory, if even that.

Looking at him now, so handsome and so male, so intrinsically Draco-ish, the thought that she might never see him again was enough to make her want to howl with misery. On second thought, maybe she wasn't entirely sober after all.

Oh well. At least we had this night, she thought ruefully. Even if I didn't get to even kiss him. Or shag him...

"What?" he asked, pancake-laden fork suspended in mid-air as he returned her gaze in askance.

"Nothing." She shrugged. "I just realized that you're actually not half bad, Malfoy."

"What - just now?" Draco scoffed. "You're quick."

xXx

By the time they emerged from the diner, the sky looked like a blanket of pink and purple velvet. There wasn't a cloud in sight, and the wind seemed to have picked up, whipping Ginny's hair playfully.

Draco slid his hands into his pockets and observed as she attempted to knot her hair into a bun. Not for the first time he wished he could curl his fingers in the brightly colored tresses, to feel the silkiness and weight of her hair in his hands - but he was no longer drunk and would have trouble justifying doing so, especially after what'd happened earlier tonight in his hotel suite.

She saw the way he was looking at him and blushed a pale pink, spreading from the apples of her cheeks to the base of her neck and below. Draco briefly tried to recreate the path of that blush under her clothes, imaging it stretching ever downward, but when their eyes met he saw that she was unable to hold his gaze, instead shifting from one foot to the other as she folded her arms across her chest.

Suddenly he felt his gut freeze over as it hit him that this was the obvious moment to part ways, to say generic phrases like "Well that was fun" or "We should do this again some time". Things that were all too true, but that would mean nothing once each retreated into their own worlds.

There was a metallic taste in his mouth now, an almost unbearable heaviness in his heart as he watched her sigh and draw in a breath.

No, no, no.

"Well...Malfoy..." She paused, uncharacteristically hesitant. It's -"

"- What's next, Gabbana?" he cut in abruptly, opting to brazenly feign ignorance.

Ginny's mouth hung open in mid-sentence, and her eyes darted to his. The hope and relief he read there was enough to make his heart soar.

"W-what?"

"I vote we find a place to see the sunrise," he continued casually, looking up at the sky.

The girl's face had broken into a dazzling smile, and Draco found himself smiling back in spite of his best effort to appear nonchalant.

"Seconded!" she said quickly. "And I know just the place."

xXx

They were sober enough to risk side-along Apparition, and Ginny studiously avoided his eyes as he wrapped his arm around her, holding her tightly as they felt the odd pull of teleportation.

They Apparated near the esplanade of the Brooklyn Bridge, which towered to their left, its metallic rails catching the first rays of the sun as it rose from behind the pink-and-gold clouds. The city stretched across from them, the glass of the skyscrapers glittering brightly, reflecting across the gold-tinged waters of the East River.

Ginny watched the way Draco seemed to take in the scene around them, and her lips curved into a smile. "Nice, isn't it?"

"Mmm." He didn't return her smile, but gray eyes held hers calmly. "You're cold," he announced, and Ginny realized that she was holding her arms around herself, huddled against the chill of the early morning.

"A little," she admitted, trying to hide her surprise when he slid off his jacket and handed it to her wordlessly.

"It's fine, I could just use a Heating Charm," she began, but he dismissed this with a brief wave of his hand.

She thanked him and looked down at the finely cut piece of cloth between her hands. She wanted to bring it up to her face and breathe it in, to smell his scent - but resisted for fear of him catching her in the act. Now that she was sober she felt simply mortified by what had transpired in the hotel room last night, so much so that she almost wished their amazing night was already over so she could crawl into her bed and be miserable about that particular part of the evening.

You're a loon, she berated herself.

"Put it on," he instructed without looking at her, his voice patient as if he were talking to a small child or a senior citizen. His eyes were fixed on the scene before him, his hands casually resting in his pockets. "What is it?" he asked, turning his gaze to hers. "Worried I've got cooties?"

Ginny grinned at what his aristocratic accents did to the word "cooties" - and at the thought of Draco-cooties in general - but said nothing. As she began to slip into the fitted jacket she caught sight of the unmistakable Muggle clothing label and her eyes shot up to Draco's.

"Dolce and -"

"- Draco and Ginny," he interrupted quietly. "That's what it means when you see the D and G together."

Ginny's mouth hung open in spite of her best efforts, but she quickly snapped it shut as the blond approached her slowly. Her eyes darted over every inch of him, taking in his graceful posture, the broadness of his shoulders, noting that the knot in his tie was nearly undone, that his shirt was wrinkled, and that his silvery blond hair was no longer neat and slicked; it now lay tousled rather attractively about his head, fluttering in the wind.

He saw the way she was looking at him and smiled disarmingly, in a way she might have seen once before, so many years ago.

We were children, then, she thought suddenly. So much time had passed since then, and somehow they had ended up standing here together.

His smiling face brought back a sudden rush of memories of hot summer days on the pitch, the smell of the freshly cut grass, and the lightness of shooting up into the sky, higher and higher, with tears streaking along the sides of her cheeks, the wind stinging in her eyes and blowing through her hair. All was contained in the limpid pools of gray that beheld her calmly, in the wistful smile that she found herself returning.

xXx

Up until that moment if anyone had asked her what she thought it would be like to kiss Draco Malfoy, formerly known as the sex god of Slytherin, the last thing she would have answered was innocent, chaste or pure. But that's exactly what it'd been, at least in the beginning. He had leaned down into her, and her eyelids had closed of their own accord. His lips had been soft and warm on hers, and his hair had feathered lightly against her cheek. He had slowly drawn away, and they'd gazed at each other in silence and wonder.

It was she who had grabbed him by the front of his shirt, drawing his face down to hers again. And then the kiss had changed into something else entirely. Her mouth and his, their tongues sliding together, swirling, revolving in each other, their kiss hot and wet and sweet. There were handfuls of impossibly soft blond hair caught between her fingers, as his arms circled her waist, drawing her body flush against his. And then he was cradling the sides of her face, holding her in place as his mouth devoured hers. And their mouths seemed to fit just right, their lips, their teeth, their tongues - it all fit like pieces in a puzzle.

xXx

"Did you come here because you thought I would shag you?" the redhead inquired, smirking at him as she braced her hands on either side of her bedroom's doorway. "Because I'm about to."

The early morning sun shone through the window behind her, illuminating her coppered-colored hair as if it were on fire.

"Pssh, as if," Draco shot back.

Standing across from her, he raised his hands as if in preparation for a thorough frisking. His piercing gray eyes seemed to hold a challenge and an invitation, and his lips were curved into a smirk.

"If you want some of this you'll have to come and get it, Ginny Weasley."

Ginny's face broke into a smile, and before he knew what was happening she had pounced on him with all the agility of a former Quidditch Chaser. And she was everywhere, all waves of wild red hair, golden eyes and soft, freckled skin. Her milky white thighs were on either side of his hips, and when her mouth found his, his lips parted immediately. They tumbled onto her bed as fingers undid buttons, as feet kicked off unneeded clothing and bare skin shivered under warm lips.

"I feel like we should have done this before," Draco murmured against her skin. "Many times."

"And whose fault was that," Ginny began, but her sentence ended abruptly in a gasp as Draco's mouth claimed new territory in the vicinity of her left breast.

"I mean years ago." He raised his head and looked into her eyes, his fingers tracing the fine line of her brow. "A lifetime ago."

She smiled and held him tightly, wrapping her legs around his narrow hips as if she feared someone would tear him away. "I wish tonight would never end, Draco," she whispered softly.

"It won't let it," he replied with a quiet sort of certainty. "Now that I found you, I don't think I can ever let you go."

Ginny smiled in that mischievous way he had already learned meant trouble for him, golden eyes alight as she flipped him over on his back. "Well, Malfoy... How good are you with ropes?"

.

.

.

Fin


Tasha's Prompt

Basic premise: chance, fate, serendipity.

Must haves: romance, fun, chance encounters.

No-no's: angst, angry Weasleys, Hogwarts era.

Rating range: Any.

Bonus points: ice cream, red wine being spilt, someone getting a tattoo.

xXx

*Lyric credits for the soundtrack featured in the party bus scenes:

Where Have You Been - Rihanna

Iron - Nicky Romero ft. Calvin Harris

Safe and Sound - Capital Cities

Clarity - Zedd ft. Foxes