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Chapter 2: Into the frying pan
Ginny was half way down the hall when she stopped. She wrapped her arms around herself. She felt wrong leaving, but she felt wrong to go back. “Shut up”, she told her mother’s voice in her head cursing her every which way to hell for going in there. It wasn’t like she hadn’t seen a dark mark before. She had even touched one, but none of them burned her.
The explanation she reached she didn’t like, it couldn’t be. “Love counters all”, she sighed. It was impossible she was sure. But she wanted like hell to just punch Voldemort in the face for doing that to him. Love saved Harry. If that’s what this was. Now she was crazy Draco Malfoy love her? Her love him back? Then again the idea didn’t sound so crazy now. She let her feet carry her as she ran back to where she left him. She kicked her heels off along the way afraid of breaking an ankle or something. She practically tore the door down going through it breathless, she stopped. Her eyes fell on Draco, sitting, against a wall. Holding a hand that was already swelling the room was a mess.
His eyes lifted and hope crossed his face. Ginny moved slowly towards him. What could she say? Nothing seemed better at the moment. She sunk to the ground next to him. Her eyes darted to his exposed arm immediately and he flinched. Then to his hand. She frowned. Having him near her made him feel better and worse. “Ginny, you shouldn’t be near me”.
“I know”, she whispered. “But I’m not sure I can be away”. He nodded. He brought his good hand up to caress the side of her face. She was shivering. He didn’t like it. All of a sudden the room changed around them instead of on a stone floor they sat on a well cushioned rug and fire appeared in the corner. The fallen desks disappeared and sitting next to them was a blanket. Draco reached around her and grabbed it with his bad hand. It hurt and he flinched. Ginny placed her hand gently on his and grabbed the blanket. She settled against his chest and draped it over the bother of them.
“This is selfish of me”, he sighed.
“Of us both”, Ginny countered. Sometime she must have drifted off to sleep, because she woke up still in the room of requirement and Draco was gone. She was laying stretched out on the rug now and a pillow had been placed under her head. In Draco’s place was a rose.
“Figures”, she sighed as she picked up. She noticed it still had its thorns. “Funny”, she rolled her eyes. She left the room rose in hand and prayed to god no one would be awake yet in the common room. Especially her brother. Girls staying out all night, after a ball, only really led to one thing at her age.
Luckily for her there was no one in the common room. Except for a sleeping Seamus. She tiptoed around him. She figured he had smuggled a bottle of firewhiskey and was too pissed to make it up the stairs. It was the usual Seamus. She went straight into the shower, skipping her room. There was still and ugly red mark where it had touched her, but other than that she was unscarred. She slipped off her dress and stepped into the warm water. A million things were running through her mind. We’re they dating now? Was this supposed to be a secret? Would he just go back to ignoring her? She both dreaded and longed for breakfast.
Ginny dressed in her usual fashion. T-shirt and jeans, she threw the rose inside of her History of magic books and closed it. The girls in her dorm were just starting to wake up so she headed downstairs.
He didn’t want to leave her, he wanted to stay with her. Feel her warm breath on his chest. To have her wake up next to him . He wanted all these things, but he couldn’t stay. The Dark Lord was connected to his followers and Draco was sure he wasn’t the only one who felt her. It was like she reached through him and slapped him in the face. He was certain he would be summoned sometime. Probably over the next Hogsmeade trip, it was only a few days away.
When he walked back through his dorm early in the morning he wasn’t the only one. He saw half of the Slytherin girls slipping across back to their dorms. He hoped Ginny hadn’t encountered anyone.
“Where ya been lover?” a voice drawled from a chair.
“No where”, he responded knowing full well Pansy wasn’t going to accept that answer.
“I missed you last night”, she pouted.
“I doubt it”, he shot back.
“Touchy, touchy”, she smiled wildly. She was getting more and more like his aunt every day. Bellatrix had taken Pansy under her wing. It wasn’t a pretty thing. “Will you be joining me tonight?” she mused.
“No”, he stated before continuing his walk up the stairs. Pansy’s eyebrows drawn together in frustration. She growled, Draco didn’t hear the rest of it he disappeared up the stairs. If nothing else he would have to be careful to protect Ginny from her.
“Ginny”, she heard her name off somewhere faint from the table across from her, her eyes focused back onto the face of Hermione Granger and let the back of Draco’s head become a blur.
“Nothing, you seem out of it is all”, Hermione pointed out with a skeptical look. The girl was too smart for her own good.
“Oh, no I’m fine, ball wore me out I guess”, she shrugged with a small smile.
Hermione studied her for a moment and accepted the false answer, “We couldn’t find you anywhere”, she smiled, “except I think I saw your dress once or twice twirling around the floor, you had fun then?” she asked hopefully.
“Ya tons, thanks”, Ginny smiled back, “mystery man”, she shrugged, well she was half telling the truth.
“Pity”, Hermione shrugged back. She wasn’t going to mention the fact that Ginny was glowing and the subject changed all entirely when Harry and Ron joined them.
“Thought you two were planning on sleeping the entire day away”, Hermione complained and then it was business as usual. Ginny’s eyes dared another glance in Draco’s direction and he was turned around looking at her. She panicked slightly, her heart beat quickened and she looked away.
He nearly ran into some poor second year on his way in, he could spot her brilliant hair from almost a mile away, and he watched her carefully as he entered the hall. As soon as she looked in his direction he looked away acting as if nothing was amiss. He sat in his usual place at the table and noted that his friends were not yet awake.
He could feel his skin crawling as if someone was staring at him, but he didn’t turn around and look, he instead focused on the food in front of him and ate, with quite a bit of force. Was she stupid? Staring at him? Might as well put a giant target over her head that says KILL ME, that way Voldemort would know right away, which blood traitor was to be targeted to really see how much Draco Malfoy could be twisted and fucked up. Maybe, just maybe, he could become as emotionally unstable as Snape. That would be a laugh.
Draco was getting far too ahead of himself however. “Stop being stupid”, he told himself, “She was probably only being kind, she’s probably staring all starry-eyed at Potter” he dared himself a glance and when he turned Potter wasn’t even there. She was talking to Hermione. He watched the facial expressions on her face change, she looked genuinely happy. He strained to overhear the conversation, but it was to no avail, Potter and Weasley had just walked in making all sorts of noise, he glared at them once and then returned his attention to Ginny. She was looking back. Her eyes grew wide and she immediately looked away. Draco smiled at how adorable she had just looked, like she was caught with her hand in the cookie jar, doe eyed. He turned back to his food just in time as the Slytherin gang had walked in, he would have to keep an eye out for when Ginny left. He had to get her alone, to explain maybe?
“Oi Draco”, someone called, and Pansy slid into the bench next to her hand immediately went to arm, he shrugged her off. Freaking witch, he noticed the increase in black clothing she had been wearing as of late. His aunt was rubbing off on her, way too much he reasoned.
Ginny glared across at the Slytherin table she watched Pansy’s hand move from Draco’s arm to his leg. He flinched away, but it didn’t help Ginny’s mood. That witch! She shook her head, what was she thinking? Draco wasn’t hers. She returned her attention to her brother talking about the beautiful raven haired girl he had met last night and how she was strange, but in a good way. She looked to Hermione who had a knowing smile on her face.
“Luna?” she mouthed to her. Hermione giggled slightly and the boys brought their attention to them.
“What’s gotten into you two?” Harry looked down at them.
“Oh nothing…” Ginny said innocently.
“Tell you later”, Hermione mouthed to him and then put her finger in front of her lips.
“Whatever”, he shrugged back thinking about his own mystery woman. That ball might have been the best night of his life; he just wished he knew who she was. There was something familiar about her smile he was sure of it, but he couldn’t place it.
Ginny shot another look to the Slytherin table and she watched Parkinson’s hand drag across Draco’s thigh, she watched Draco remove it and a small smile came to her face. What was she doing? Was she insane? Jealous of Pansy over Draco? Suddenly food didn’t seem appealing to her.
“I think I’m going to go get some more rest”, she told Hermione as she stood, and scurried towards the door of the Great Hall.
“Is she alright?” Ron watched her go, genuinely concerned about his little sister.
Hermione simply shrugged knowing the answer was no, but if she alerted Ron all hell would break loose, “She probably just didn’t sleep well”, Hermione offered as an excuse before turning back to her friends, “So Ron tell us more about this Raven haired girl”, she giggled and Ron’s face flushed red.
As soon as she stood so did he, so suddenly that his usual gang was looking at him as if he was insane, “ummm” he faultered for a moment, “left my wand in my room”, he said with a shrug as he headed for the exit.
Pansy followed him with her eyes, he was staring intently at the Weasley girl for a moment, but she thought nothing of it, it didn’t matter class or social rank, Draco could always appreciate an attractive female. She threw it to the back of her mind and turned to Blaze Zambini who was sitting on the other side of her and started whispering terrible things in his ear. His eyes immediately went wide.
She had hoped to get the common room unchecked, she needed to clear her head, but instead she felt a hand wheel her around into an empty hallway. “What the…” she cut herself off when she noticed who it was.
“Umm” now that he had her alone he wasn’t sure what to say. Her hands went to her hips. “I’m sorry, if I hurt you last night”. He began.
“I’m fine”, she shrugged off his concern. He growled in his head, she should be more careful, she could get killed being so carefree.
“I’m not sure what happened...” he paused, “with my mark”.
“That makes two of us”, Ginny rolled her eyes. He was being so formal, why was he trying to hide all his feelings, why didn’t he just come out in say it, the fiery little red head was getting fed up.
“You shouldn’t see me anymore”, he said quickly and Ginny’s heart fell. She opened her mouth to protest, but Draco gave her no time, he quickly pulled her to him and kissed her. It was much the same kind of kiss as last night, needy, frightfully so, as if Ginny was his only salvation. She fell into it though. When they broke, “I’m sorry”, he said stiffly, “I’m not safe”. With that he left her quickly running off Ginny was too stunned to do anything. His kisses tended to leave her that way. She wasn’t sure of her feelings right now, she was frustrated, and angry at him ,but she was also sad, relieved maybe, confused, all these emotions swirling inside of her, she was going to go insane. She was about to high-tail it into the safety of the Gryffindor common room, but instead she found herself traveling in a different direction, into the dungeon.
The Head Boy’s accommodations for Slytherin weren’t hard to find, if he had been Gryffindor or another house it wouldn’t be in a dreary place though. The door was a bit perplexing she figured a password or something was needed. She touched her hand to it and as she did it spoke to her. “Ahhh a pretty face”, it seemed to smile at her, “Master Malfoy is always welcoming to those, would you like to come in?” it asked politely.
“Erm,… sure ya” she frowned at the door, “Always welcoming eh?” It said nothing in reply only swung open and closed behind her. She looked around, it was a simple mini common room and she spotted two doors, one she figured was the bathroom and the other a bedroom. Head’s really did get perks. Ginny did a double take spinning around to view the room and when she turned back towards the bedroom door it was open and Draco Malfoy was standing in the door frame. Ginny jumped a little in shock and Draco starred with a slightly amused expression on his face.