SIYE Time:20:55 on 21st May 2018

Reality Bites
By Trinka

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Category: Alternate Universe
Characters:Harry/Ginny, Hermione Granger, Neville Longbottom
Genres: Comedy
Warnings: None
Story is Complete
Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 759
Summary: Ginny is persuaded to be on a Bachelor-type reality show against her better judgement. Who is the hunk all the women are fighting over? We know him. We love him. But in my story, Ginny's never met him. NOTE: If you think you'll hate this story, read it anyway! I hate reality shows too, you know! lol Trust me, you'll love it...I proclaim in as non-arrogant a way as possible... *sweat drop*
Hitcount: Story Total: 101103; Chapter Total: 4917


Episode Ten

Just as Ginny had imagined, she did not at all enjoy the hovering of the other girls when she and the other three girls got back. Trista and Tier she didn’t mind, because they asked reasonable questions. Janice, of course, she continued to despise, as well as ignore, especially when she asked the girls if Ginny had made any passes at Harry. Well, I no longer need to wonder where they got the idea that I’m a slut. Much to Ginny’s relief, Lila and Christina ignored the question as readily as Ginny herself, and Elizabeth seemed embarrassed to answer.

It was just starting to quiet down when Connie came into the alcove. Most of the girls had gone on to bed, so there were only a handful of them around when she looked briskly around the room, made eye contact with Ginny and beckoned her with a finger. Ginny stood tentatively and followed Connie out of the room and into the hallway leading to the rest of the castle.

Connie didn’t turn to make sure Ginny was following, she simply walked and assumed that Ginny was trailing her like a good little girl. The stern look that Connie had had on her face when she first walked in worried Ginny to no end. What did I do that could possibly have gotten me in trouble? Thinking of the rollercoaster, Ginny’s stomach sank to her toes. Was that against some kind of rule?

Connie stopped in front of a door and took a ring of keys out of her pocket. Ginny tried not to think about how she was able to hide so many keys in such a small pocket; she tried to stop because she knew she was only thinking about it so that she wouldn’t be thinking about why she might be in trouble.

Opening the door, Connie motioned Ginny in behind her and offered her the chair in front of her desk. They were obviously in Connie’s office and Ginny once again had to keep her mind from straying to irrelevant little tidbits of pointless fluff. Connie sat down behind her desk and leaned toward Ginny, her fingers steepled.

“I was watching the footage live today,” she began. Oh cripes, here it comes. “Normally, I would be upset about your little escapade, except…” Ginny’s breath caught; I’m not in trouble? “Well,” Connie smiled as she continued. “The producers have decided that the whole situation is sure to get a lot of high ratings.”

Ginny would have laughed if she hadn’t been so confused. “I’m not sure I understand. I mean, it’s not that I want to be in trouble or anything but…I don’t see how this situation could raise ratings.”

Connie leaned back before speaking, as though it was the simplest thing in the world. “Well you see, viewers may or may not be rooting for you at this point. You’re a nice girl, so they very well may be hoping that you win, and if so, they’ll be very upset at the comments the other girls make about you, and very excited when you got back on their good sides. Even those who may not like you could very well change their minds after today’s events are aired. Plus, when Christina slapped you, it’s sure to bring more viewers to find out what had happened, since earlier this week you two seemed to be getting along just find.”

Ginny broke in before Connie could say any more. “So, you’re saying that you’re going to use the fact that I was slapped and virtually hated by the other girls simply to make this show more popular? And you’re telling me this. I don’t know why you are, because I would have rather not known that you were going to use me in this way. Why did you tell me all about this?”

Connie didn’t seem so happy now, and Ginny didn’t care, because neither was she. This was impossible. “Because, as I said, normally you would be in very big trouble for what happened today. Going off alone with Harry and whispering conversations so that the cameramen couldn’t hear you. You may have forgotten, but this is a reality show and you are on it. You are going to be watched and your moves will be marked. People will love or hate you because of what we show. We could very well just show what the girls think about you and never show you making up with them if we wanted to. But instead, we’re going to do a nice thing for you and get some good ratings as a bonus.”

Sitting silently through the tirade, Ginny merely nodded. “Yes, this is a reality show,” she finally spoke. “But this is also a group of very vulnerable girls who will probably have to live the rest of their lives with how you portray them when this is aired. I suppose I should be happy that you’re going to put me in a good light. No, I am happy that you’re going to put me in a good light. But I don’t want to know about it anymore, please. I don’t want to know if you think people will like me or hate me when this show is over. All I care about is if these girls will like me or hate me, and most importantly what Harry thinks about me. The viewers mean very little to me at this point. So please, unless I am going to get in trouble, don’t tell me what’s planned. I really don’t want to know. I apologize for my behavior and I hope that you don’t change your mind about how you will air today’s occurrences, but if you do change, don’t tell me, and if something else comes up, whether good or bad, don’t tell me unless I’m to be punished for it.” She paused to calm herself a little before asking to be excused.

Ginny stalked out of Connie’s office and decided to try to navigate back to the rooms. She was bad with directions, but she’d rather hug Janice than ask Connie for directions. Okay…so that wasn’t true. But there were a good many things she would have rather done than ask Connie for directions.

Okay, she turned this way into her office, so I should walk this way down the hall. Ginny started off in her direction of choice feeling rather confident. The next choice was not so easy. I think we turned right in to this hallway, so I should turn left to go back. But what if I was thinking right so that I’d know how to get back? In that case, I should actually turn right to get back. Suddenly Ginny’s stomach plummeted as she realized that straight was also an option. Did we pass any crossroads without turning at them? She had been worrying so much on the way there, that Ginny had absolutely no idea whatsoever. She was now beyond lost. She was lost, yes, but she was also aggravated, which made reasoning even more difficult than it should be; therefore, beyond lost. Eenie Meenie Minie Mo would get Ginny nowhere, so she decided on left. Why? She had no idea, but at the moment, it was as good a choice as any.

Puzzling her newest choice when she reached the next intersection, Ginny had regained a bit of her usual humor in the light of her distress: “What I need now is a Ferris Wheel,” she muttered aloud for the purpose of making herself laugh. If I laugh loud enough, someone may think I’m a lunatic and come find me; then I would be saved! Ginny thought hysterically. “Get a grip, Ginevra!”

Since this was now starting to feel suspiciously like a maze, Ginny decided to follow the age-old rule. Her last turn was a left, so she would go left again. Another left after that found her in a large, mostly empty room. Definitely the wrong direction. She backtracked and took the turn to the right instead. This hallway led to a room that was considerably smaller and also considerably fuller; which made sense, since it looked to be a storage room. Back once more, Ginny took her last choice: straight. And beyond that…another intersection.

So…I am definitely going the wrong direction here. She turned left. And left again. The next intersection, left was not a choice, so she went straight. Who built this bloody castle?? As she turned left once more she walked right in to something.

This…is not…happening, Ginny told herself from her seated position on the floor staring up into the face of Harry Potter. Things like this don’t happen. This is the kind of thing that you hope to happen that you know never will. I never wished for this! Why is it happening? Oh bloody hell.

Harry laughed and Ginny realized that the last had been spoken out loud. “Sorry,” she muttered as he held out a hand to help her up. There was an awkward silence as they both decided whether or not to talk. If Connie ever finds out about this, I am as good as dead.

“I was wondering earlier,” Harry began quietly, seeming as nervous as Ginny herself. “What was that red mark on your face earlier today?”

Ginny thought a moment how best to explain. “I needed a good slap, so Christina lent a hand, so to speak.”

“She slapped you?” he asked in outrage.

“Yes she did, and for good reason too. It did quite a number on our relationship, in a good way, believe it or not.” Harry was obviously confused, and since Ginny decided that “confused” also looked good on Mr. Potter, she really felt no need to continue explaining. “That reminds me,” she added. “The bumper cars were actually Christina’s idea.” She left out the explanation of that statement on purpose. No point in trying to sound like the hero here. She had fortuitously done that enough today, it would seem.

“I am really confused,” Harry admitted at length.

“And I am really lost,” Ginny retorted with a smile for the look on Harry’s face. That obviously had not been the response he had been looking for. “You don’t happen to know how to get back to my room, do you?” Harry gave her a look that had her hand up defensively. “Okay, I didn’t think so. Well, I had better try to find my way back before Connie finds us here. I’d really be in trouble then.”

Harry just looked at her a little disgruntled. “Okay, that one you have to explain.”
Ginny grinned broadly before deciding to give the poor boy a break. “I almost got in trouble for going off alone with you today. That’s why I’m lost. I couldn’t find my way back from Connie’s office.”

“Why didn’t you ask Connie how to get back?”

Ginny blushed. “We didn’t exactly part company with the best regards.”

Harry nodded, though it was obvious he didn’t understand at all. Ginny couldn’t help smiling again.

“What are you smiling at?” Harry asked warily.

“You’re really cute when you’re confused,” Ginny responded without thinking. Oh crap. Ginny blushed furiously and tore her eyes away from his own.

She chanced a look at Harry and saw that he was blushing too. This is getting out of hand. “Well, I’ll be leaving now. Sorry to bother you. Please don’t hate me the next time we meet.” Ginny was around the next corner before Harry could so much as open his mouth. She wanted to scream. Great Ginny. Just great. First exasperate him, then compliment him, then run away. What a way to work.

With just three more lefts, Ginny was back to the rooms. Opening the door with a grateful sigh, Ginny walked into the middle of pandemonium and was hit squarely in the face with an overly stuffed pillow.
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