Chapter 1 : Kiss, Appropriated
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His lips pressed to her own after his gentle hand caressed the nape of her neck. The nails were short and perhaps ground down through biting, the jagged edges grazing her skin lightly. She did not care at all. There were goosebumps; every hair on her body sprang up in excitement. She thought she was tired and exhausted but nearly every sense in her body awakened at his touch. Eyes firmly pressed shut, she let him embrace her, she let him coast his soft (although slightly chapped) lips over hers. The pace slowly picked up, their mouths and their hearts. She could feel his pounding against her chest as he came closer, pressing them together. Blood never travelled so fast around her body; she was so … excited … She had never literally been struck dumb in her entire life - it seemed unthinkable for that to occur - but it was so in that moment. There were no words forming in her mind, only feelings and what it felt like to be with him and to be touched by him, to have their bodies leaning into each other as she sat up awkwardly in the chair. Trying to tell herself to pull it together was superfluous and truthfully impossible, unimaginable.
She felt she could have done anything at that moment, she would have given herself to him had he demanded it of her. She would have surrendered everything she owned, given up every friendship just to spend every moment in his company.
Considering that Hermione Granger never usually got flustered or overly involved with boys, she was awfully invested in this situation. This boy had stolen her first kiss from her, provided it at the most unlikely time, uninvited yet welcomed, innocently, while the others slept quietly above them.
The Quidditch World Cup Final between Ireland and Bulgaria had gotten almost everybody intensely motivated and perversely enthusiastic. Hermione and Ginny sat with the boys in their tent, awaiting the moment that Mr Weasley came back to tell them that it was time to leave.
“Bulgaria are going to win this thing!” Ron yelled, clad in red, face painted with various memorabilia in his hands.
“Oh please, Ron, just look at their line-up! Moran and Mullet are the best flyers ever. Bulgaria won’t touch them,” George retorted harshly, “just look at their stats!”
Fred continued for him, both twins head to toe in green and white. “Fastest Chasers this decade, no contest -”
“Krum -” Ron began.
“I said Chasers,” he shot back. “76% possession minimum for every match leading up to the final, 34 goals between just the two of them, not counting Troy. Moran and Mullet have provided the team with countless points and -”
“What about Lynch?” Ginny said, sitting on the dining table. “Caught the Snitch in twelve minutes in the semis. And he’s a great captain.”
“Yeah, only because you fancy him,” Ron revealed to get her to shut up.
Goal achieved, Ginny blushed and elegantly removed herself from the conversation by pretending to find something to eat in the cupboards.
“Thought you would have been behind the Beaters,” Harry said. He seemed slightly taken aback by everyone else’s knowledge of Quidditch, but did not let it dampen his excitement.
“Connolley and Quigley are nothing special,” Fred said nonchalantly. “George and I do better at school.”
“You wish,” Ron muttered.
“Coming from the boy who’s not on the team,” George said slyly.
Before they got into a dispute, Hermione asked Fred, “And who is the Keeper?”
“Barrie Ryan. You wouldn’t know him.”
“Forget Ryan,” Ron said, “it’s all about -”
“Let me guess,” Harry said.
“Krum.” Harry, Fred, George and Ginny chorused the same word while looking bored and tired.
Hermione smiled, feeling nothing other than clear exclusion. She was an outsider, not knowing or caring about Quidditch besides the occasional time that she cheered on the Gryffindor team when they played at Hogwarts.
While Fred and George named other players on the Bulgarian team who had more skill, precision and endurance than ‘Ron’s Precious Krum’, Ron, equally as loudly, defended him as though he were family.
“You’ll see,” George said as they all walked out of the enchanted tent ready for the game. Ginny wore mixed colours for both teams and Harry supported Ron by wearing the colours of Bulgaria, as a best friend would.
They followed Mr Weasley to the edge of the huge Quidditch Pitch, where they would meet Bill, Charlie and Percy before the match began.
As they waited for their tickets to be checked over, Fred looked down at Hermione while she looked around at the oddly-dressed fans.
“Who are you supporting?” he asked curiously, gazing at her blue jeans and pink shirt and her obvious lack of decision when it came to backing a team.
“Whoever wins,” she said honestly, smiling.
“Ireland, then. Smart answer.” He took the green and white scarf he was wearing from around his neck and draped it around her shoulders. “There you go.”
“Erm - thank you,” she said slowly, pulling it on tighter. It smelt of the Burrow and of everything she loved about it, the outdoors, Mrs Weasley’s cooking and much more.
“Don’t tell me you’ve convinced Hermione that Ireland are going to win,” Ron said to Fred from afar, seeing the scarf.
“I didn’t force it on her,” he retorted.
“If anyone would see sense, it would be Hermione,” George said ahead of them. He pointed at Harry and Ron. “These two dunces will be the ones left crying in the end.”
“We heard that,” Harry muttered.
“You were supposed to.”
Programmes were being handed out among them for them to share and Hermione gazed at hers and Ginny’s curiously as they all walked up the steps to their seats after Mr Weasley. She sat between Harry and Ginny in the cool breeze of the evening, gazing down at the vast pitch.
The match was going to begin almost straightaway so she stood up to leave.
“Where are you going?” Ginny asked.
“Ladies room.” Hermione raised her voice. “Does anyone want any snacks or drinks or anything?”
Multiple voices began to shout at her for various food and drinks while sickles and knuts were being passed to her. Muttering hotly beneath her breath, she shoved the money into her pocket and began to descend the steps, trying to memorise what everyone wanted.
Just as she got to the level with lavatories and food stalls, she heard a voice call her.
“Hermione!” One of the twins had followed her down.
“Fred.” He smiled. “Thought you could do with some help.”
“Also, Dad wanted another programme because he dropped his.”
“Right. Well, I’m just gonna …” Hermione pointed towards the toilets.
“I’ll wait.” He grinned childishly as she went inside.
She was very happy to see that someone was nice enough to help her out. She had expected it to be Ron or even Harry, but she supposed that Quidditch sometimes came before her.
Sighing, she returned to Fred, who had begun ordering the snacks. As they were handed to them, Hermione paid the money. They began trying to balance all of the drinks and eventually stumbled back to the seats, where Fudge had already begun to announce the game.
Food passed out and Quidditch players flying, Hermione decided not to squeeze back beside Ginny but the stay where she was, sandwiched between the twins as the crowd all got to their feet and roared.
“What’s up, Ron?” Hermione asked him, smiling. He said nothing. “It’s not the end of the world, you know. I guess Ireland are just much better than -”
“It wasn’t a clear win anyway,” Ron muttered, agitated as they all sat in the tent discussing the match - well, teasing Ron about Bulgaria’s defeat.
“It was quite close,” Harry tried.
“But not close enough,” Fred said. “Let’s face it, some things just weren’t meant to be, Ronald.”
“Anyone hungry?” Ginny said from the kitchen.
Everyone muttered something.
“I’ll help,” Hermione offered, getting up from the ground and rushing to the kitchen eager to get away form the sports talk; she guessed guys were the same in the wizarding world as in the muggle one.
Ginny searched the cupboards and the fridge, getting snacks and things for the boys and began preparing a salad for herself and Hermione. As Ginny chopped, Hermione gazed at the Weasley boys while they sang and teased Ron.
“They’re so funny,” Hermione said, smiling.
“Who? Fred and George?”
Hermione nodded. She watched as the twins tried to wrap Ron up in the Ireland flag.
Ginny laughed as she tossed her hair over her shoulder. “You should have seen them a couple of years ago. Ron and George got into a terrible fight. So then Fred tried to flush Ron’s head down the toilet. Dad broke it up and Fred and George didn’t speak to Ron for about a month.” She paused. “I was seven, so Ron was eight and the other two ten. The family dynamic was not great.”
“Wow,” Hermione said, “I can’t imagine them fighting now.”
“They haven’t since. That’s if you don’t count the usual.” Ginny shrugged her hair over her shoulder. “I’m going to go and do something with my hair.”
“I’ll take over,” Hermione said as Ginny went out of the boys’ tent to theirs.
As Hermione took up the sharp knife and began chopping various leaves, the boys continued to discuss Quidditch - all except George, who had come over to the kitchen for a drink.
“Hey, Hermione,” he said, pouring himself some water.
“Hey. Had a good evening?”
“The best.” He sipped. “Ron’s still seething, of course.”
“He seems very passionate about the game,” Hermione observed. She watched George as he drank. He saw her watching and she looked away. “Hungry?” she asked.
“Not for rabbit food,” he said, staring at the salad as though it offended him. “Got anything more substantial?”
“Sandwich?” Hermione located the loaf of bread and threw it to him.
“You’re not gonna make it for me?”
“In your dreams.”
He laughed and began to prepare himself something to eat.
“I envy you guys,” Hermione admitted. “Sometimes.”
She shrugged. “I don’t know. You have brothers and a sister. And you’re all best friends …”
“Trust me, not all of the time.”
“Ginny told me about when you and Fred didn’t talk to Ron for a month.”
“And all this time I was convinced that you thought I was Fred.”
“I can tell the difference between you!” Hermione assured.
“Yeah …” He did not believe her.
“Of course I can. Sometimes with a little help, but I can. Either way, you are avoiding what I said.”
George went into the cupboards to search for a filling for his sandwich. “It wasn’t a big deal.”
“I hardly think Fred trying to flush Ron’s head down the toilet isn’t a big deal.”
“Who said he didn’t do it?”
Hermione’s mouth fell open. “Why?”
“Because he was right. At that age, Fred and I were struggling to find our own identities. It was only a small fight, but Ron knew that we needed to find ourselves - separately. So he used words to hurt us. Personally, I would have preferred if he punched me.”
Hermione had no idea that the problems were deeper than the surface but it was evident as she watched George shrink against the counter.
“I’m sorry,” she muttered.
“Don’t be sorry for something you had no hand in. Besides, that was then and this is now. Right now, I am bathed in happiness because the best Quidditch team ever just won the World Cup. And guess what.”
“I’m going to spend all night rubbing it in Ron’s face.”
They laughed together lightly, sharing one of those rare moment’s that Hermione spent with Ron’s siblings. However, this was short-lived; she accidentally chopped into her finger rather than the lettuce that she should have been concentrating on.
“Ouch!” she yelled, closing her eyes. She dropped the knife.
“Let me see it,” George demanded.
“No,” she said harshly, sighing.
George located a cloth and held her arm still, pressing it onto her wound.
Hermione tried to chuckle. “I should really be more careful.”
“You should,” he replied softly.
Hermione gazed back at him but was interrupted when Mr Weasley and Ginny entered the tent. Screams could be heard.
“We need to go,” Mr Weasley told them.
George took Hermione’s hand in his as the others ran out, making sure that the bleeding had stopped. Soon after, he left her side and ran into the night.
She had no time to thank him, instead, she followed Harry and the other Weasleys out, only to be swept into a crowd of scared, weeping witches and wizards.
Hermione was sitting on her bed in Ginny’s room with her arms wrapped around her knees, images of the Dark Mark swimming around her head. Question after question went around her head for hours and hours. She had voiced her fears to Harry and Ron earlier and then to Ginny before she had fallen asleep but the fear was ever-present.
It was about three in the morning and Hermione was exhausted. Still, she waded through all of the things in Ginny’s room and went down to the kitchen to get a glass of water.
Walking lightly, she took the steps down and went straight to the sink for her drink. Not able to get the image of fire out of her mind, she shook her head.
“Calm down, Hermione,” she told herself aloud. She took a deep breath and turned around with the glass in her hand. She took a sip of water but saw a shadow move in the living room.
She let go of the glass; it fell to the ground and smashed.
Hermione jumped backwards.
“Sorry, Hermione. It’s just me.” One of the twins came forward, himself with a glass of water.
“Oh -” Hermione was about to call his name, but the problem was, she could not tell in this darkness, whether it was Fred or George. She blinked a few times and held her tired head.
He smiled as he put his glass down on the coffee table. “Are you alright?”
Hermione shrugged. “Still in shock about what happened at the World Cup. Couldn’t sleep.”
“Me neither.” He gazed at her for a moment, a carefully placed look in his eye. “Well - goodnight.”
“No, wait - Ouch!” Hermione had taken a step forward, stepping in the broken glass. She held her foot up as he came beside her. She put her arm on his shoulder and hopped around the mess, where he led her to an armchair.
He sat on the ground below her and lifted her foot where a shard of glass was poking out of it.
“I’m such a - an idiot!” Hermione said, enraged with her stupidity.
He laughed. “The last thing I’d thought you’d admit.”
“Yes, well …” She stifled a painful yell. “First my finger, now this …”
“You ready?” His fingers were clutching the long shard of glass and one hand was holding down her ankle.
“No.” Hermione clutched the side of the sofa, biting her lip.
“Are you ready?” he asked again.
He ripped the glass out and Hermione yelled so loudly that she was certain that everyone in the county could have heard it. She rolled onto her front to stifle her screaming, trying to keep her leg as still as possible.
“I’m sorry!” one of the twins yelled quietly. “I should have put something on it beforehand! Here! Here, I have antiseptic.”
“Get it away from me,” she whispered gazing at the bottle with fear.
“Maybe I should get Mum,” he said, panicking.
“No, it’s fine. Just do it. And get some dressing and a bandage.”
Within a few minutes, Hermione’s foot was wrapped up tightly and although it was no longer throbbing, she felt like she had experienced one of the worst nights of her life.
“How is it?” he asked.
“Okay.” She placed her hands in his and let him lift her, one foot hovering a few inches above the ground.
“Try a little pressure.”
Hermione let her foot fall on the ground. It hurt a lot and she wobbled and fell back down onto the chair, the Weasley boy falling down with her in an attempt to save her from hurting herself.
“Be careful, Hermione,” he said, chuckling quietly.
“I’m just a bit …”
“I understand.” The two of them were squeezed next to each other, hands still touching. They didn’t really notice. “I could tell you felt intimidated earlier,” he said softly.
Hermione laughed. “How did you know?!” She sighed. “It’s no secret that Quidditch isn’t really my thing.”
“Sorry. If we made you feel left out.”
“I didn’t -” He stared at her, raising an eyebrow. “Apology accepted.”
“That’s more like it, Hermione. You know, you don’t always have to ignore your own feelings for our sake.”
“I know,” she said, smiling at him through the darkness, “but you guys are my second family, my closest friends.”
“Oh, a ‘Ron’s family is my family’ kind of thing?” he asked.
“Yeah,” she said, after thinking about it for a moment.
“What’s mine is yours?”
“In that case, I’ve been eyeing a spell book of yours that might be handy for Weasley Wizard Wheezes products.”
“You have, have you?”
“I know it may be quite advanced for you -”
“Nothing is too advanced,” Hermione retorted. “But if you want it so badly, you can borrow it.”
“Thanks. We’ve been wanting to ask for a while. We just … didn’t know how …”
“You can ask me anything,” Hermione reassured.
She saw his eyes look down and then around the room. That was when she noticed that they were still holding hands and were still very close, bodies touching.
“It’s late,” Hermione observed. She had planned to try to get up, but his hand grasped hers tighter so she did not move.
“What would you do if you thought you liked someone but wasn’t sure because it would be so strange if you did like them but are convinced that you do anyway despite the weirdness?”
“Erm …” Hermione’s mouth opened and closed for a while. “I don’t know … erm …”
He chuckled. “Great advice.”
“Well, maybe if you just waited for a while to see if this girl liked you back, because, you never know -”
At that moment, his hand went down her arm, all the way to her shoulder, to her neck, caressing it and pulling her forward towards him.
“What are you …?” Hermione whispered.
“You’re the girl,” he whispered. “And it would be so strange if I kissed you right now. Being my little brother’s best friend.”
“It would,” she muttered back.
“It would.” He looked over her eyes, eyelashes, his breath over her nose.
Her body shook as she waited, wondering what the hell she was doing letting one of Ron’s twin brothers kiss her, but she was so taken away by the moment that she just wanted to feel it, to receive her first kiss and worry about the consequences later.
Their lips met.
His lips pressed to her own after his gentle hand caressed the nape of her neck …
There were goosebumps …
Eyes firmly pressed shut, she let him embrace her, she let him coast his soft (although slightly chapped) lips over hers …
The pace slowly picked up, their mouths and their hearts …
There were no words forming in her mind, only feelings and what it felt like to be with him and to be touched by him, to have their bodies leaning into each other as she sat up awkwardly in the chair …
Trying to tell herself to pull it together was superfluous and truthfully impossible, unimaginable …
She would have surrendered everything she owned, given up every friendship just to spend every moment in his company …
This boy had stolen her first kiss from her, provided it at the most unlikely time, uninvited yet welcomed, innocently, while the others slept quietly above them …
Everything seemed so surreal as they sat together, wound in each other, bound together. He was so gentle with her. She knew that he cared and also that he was afraid because he was shaking as much as she was. But nervousness could not stop their chemistry for they had tons of it.
He pulled away for a moment, but Hermione kissed him one final time, her body overriding the rational thoughts whizzing through her brain, the thoughts that told her to stop and to think about what everyone would think. No one would have to know.
“No one has to know,” she whispered to him nervously.
“I’m sorry, I just -” He smiled, elated.
Hermione shook her head and touched her mouth. “You don’t have to apologise. I-it was nice.”
“Good … good …” He looked away from her.
“It’s late,” she said once more.
“Yeah … yeah and … I should clean up the glass …” He got up and walked over to the mess on the ground in the kitchen.
“No, I’ll do it,” Hermione said.
“It’s okay. It was my fault. You go to bed.” He located a tea towel and bent down to begin cleaning up.
“Okay. Thanks.” She stood up carefully. “Goodnight.”
“Do you need some help getting upstairs?” he asked.
“No, I’ll be alright.”
He smiled at her. “Okay. Goodnight, Hermione.”
Grinning from ear to ear and ignoring the pain in her foot, Hermione hopped up the stairs and returned back to Ginny’s bedroom and sat in bed. She felt such an immense feeling in her heart that she had to laugh at herself for a moment. And then she wondered ‘Is this just a fraction of what love feels like?’ How could someone possibly feel more for a person than she felt for -
And therein lied the problem. She did not know whether it was Fred or whether it was George who she had been kissed by so she could not direct her affections appropriately. She said it would be a secret so she couldn’t ask one of the twins in fear of it being the wrong one. Could she confide in Ginny? Or Harry? Or Ron? Hermione was angry with herself for not asking him who he was but decided to leave that problem until daylight so that she could revel in and dream about the moment she finally was kissed by a boy who really liked her.
Even though it was, indeed, weird that one of the twins found her attractive, Hermione couldn’t have been happier.
A/N: Hey everyone. This is my first Hermione/FredorGeorge fic and I hope you like it. I am highly considering making this a short story or novella. Do you think I should? Please leave a comment and also who you think it is or who you think it should be. Thanks for reading!!!