|SIYE Time:9:22 on 22nd March 2018|
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Category: Alternate Universe
Characters:Harry/Ginny, Hermione Granger, Neville Longbottom
Story is Complete
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: 99568; Chapter Total: 5005
Quidditch, Knockers, and Nosy Brothers
Ginny was nervous to the point of hysteria by the time Trista proclaimed her ready to go. She had only ten minutes left until she met up with Harry and Connie. Settling herself on her bed, Ginny tried vainly to settle her stomach.
If I’m like this all day, I won’t be fit to be around! This thought, however in jest she had meant it, did nothing to settle her, but instead proved to make her edginess worse.
Trista walked over and sat down next to Ginny. “Look at me,” when Ginny’s body didn’t respond as quickly as it should, Trista gently grabbed Ginny’s face and turned it toward her. “That’s better. In less than ten minutes you are going on a date. It’s quite obvious you like him, either that or you just really like being on camera,” Ginny laughed in quiet disbelief. “I thought not. So, don’t worry. You’ve made a fool of yourself in front of him before and he has yet to shun you. You are a very pretty girl and if he hasn’t noticed that yet, he’s blind. Now please, don’t make me say anymore to cheer you up, because I’m starting to depress myself.”
Grabbing Trista’s hands, Ginny looked apologetically into her eyes. “I’m sorry Trista. I don’t mean to make you feel bad. I’m so grateful that you’re here. I’m not sure how many times I would have almost killed Janice by now if you weren’t around. I don’t want to be a burden to you, so you don’t need to say anymore. I’m not nervous, okay?” Ginny lied through her teeth, which was obvious by the way her hands were shaking as they grasped Trista’s, but Trista understood.
Standing, Trista pulled Ginny up with her and hugged her fiercely. “You have fun, okay? When you come back, I want to hear that you’ve stolen half of his heart. I want the other half for myself, okay?” Ginny saluted Trista formally and they both dissolved into laughter.
This is it, thought Ginny as Trista followed her out of the room. Excusing herself, Trista slid into her own room right after giving Ginny an encouraging smile. Ginny walked into the alcove and was met by one of the many serving men that always happened to be around whenever they were needed. He gestured for her to follow him so she did.
After a few turns Ginny found herself face to face with Harry. Smiling shyly, she walked over to him — near him anyway — and noticed that Connie was also standing there.
“The limo is waiting for you two out in front. I’m glad to see you both brought robes, despite the comment that there would be no need of them. You are to meet the driver at the Leaky Cauldron — not the muggle side; not in those clothes — at exactly 10:00, which shouldn’t be a problem since most of the shops are closed by then anyway.” She paused, smiling. “Well, off you go then!”
Saying an awkward goodbye to Connie, the two were led inexorably onward through the twisting hallways. Ginny turned around making sure that Connie was no longer in sight.
“You know,” Ginny whispered, leaning toward Harry. He inclined his head toward her to better hear. “I have a feeling we’re being watched.” She looked suspiciously toward the cameramen then gave Harry a mockingly shrewd look.
Grinning on the point of laughter, Harry straightened and continued walking, giving Ginny strange looks every once in a while, as though saying “Yeah. Yeah I…I feel it too,” accompanied by a satirical nod. They grinned sheepishly at one another and Ginny wondered if the cameras were picking up on this. She gave the nearest camera a sidelong look. Tempted to the point that she almost couldn’t stop herself, Ginny very much wanted to stick her tongue out at it. They finally reached the entrance to the house, where their escort positioned himself as he gestured them on. The cameras continued to follow.
They walked toward the limo and Harry stepped forward quickly to open the door for Ginny. He held out his hand to help her with balance as she sat down, which is probably why she didn’t sense the other presence already in the seat next to her.
“Bloody hell!” Ginny yelped as she looked to see Connie sitting right next to her. Giving Ginny a disapproving look for her language that she tried to hide behind a tittering laugh, Connie began talking again.
“I forgot to tell you,” she began as Harry got himself situated in the seat across from them. “Around dinner time you have a reservation for any of the restaurants along the main strip on Diagon Alley. Oh, and Mr. Potter,” she pulled something out of her pocket. “You forgot your wallet.” And with that, she dissaparated out of the limo.
Ginny saw that Harry was blushing but he also seemed to still be on the point of laughter. Or maybe again? “What is so funny, Mr. Potter?”
“Your language is funny, Miss Weasley,” was his reply, leaving Ginny with a faint pinkish tint to her cheeks as well.
“Yes well, I’m not exactly used to people randomly appearing in the seat next to me without noticing.”
Harry gave her a strange look. “Why didn’t you notice her?”
Because you were holding my hand, was her initial answer, but she stuffed that to the back of her mind and gave the less true, though not quite false, answer. “I was distracted.” The look he gave her seemed very knowing, so she only smiled coyly at him and turned her head to gaze out the window.
She heard Harry chuckle after a while and turned to see what was so funny this time only to find him laughing at his wallet. “Well, it isn’t often that a wallet is so amusing, but I suppose to some people…” she smiled as he turned her look toward her.
“Very funny,” he grumbled comically as he stood, stooped over, turned, and seated himself next to her. “This is what I was laughing at,” he added, pointing out a picture in his wallet. It took Ginny quite a while to focus on the picture with him this close to her.
Blimey he smells good, she thought as she finally looked at the picture. It was a younger Harry, decked out in Quidditch robes. As she watched, young-Harry would brace himself and perform a flawless corkscrew flip righting himself with such a triumphant look that Ginny couldn’t help but smile. Looking closer, she saw young-Harry clutching something in his hand. “Was this taken right after winning a game?”
“Yeah,” Harry answered with a slightly far-off look in his eyes. “The flip I’m doing was the move that won the game for us. The other Seeker and I were neck and neck until I saw that the only time the snitch was close enough for either of us to catch it, it was too low. So, the next time I thought it was coming close, I flipped and grabbed it while upside-down.” He looked at Ginny with a face glowing with an almost malicious pride. “People were taunting Draco about it for weeks.”
“Draco was the other Seeker, I take it?”
“Yeah. Draco Malfoy. He was my rival all during school.”
“Malfoy? As in Lucius Malfoy? The Death Eater?”
“Yeah. How do you think the Famous Harry Potter was able to know when the Death Eaters were going to strike? Draco was completely out of it for an entire week, then one day he was worse than usual. I knew something was about to happen, so I went and told Dumbledore about it. He agreed with me and we were able to gain enough time to get ourselves ready for any attack. Then, believe it or not, Draco sided with us. He was the one that took his father hostage, in fact.”
Fitting this story into the one that she had been told for years, Ginny thought that Harry was either being extremely modest or he really didn’t understand how incredible he was.
The ride wasn’t nearly as long as Ginny had hoped it would be and their conversation kept them entertained the whole time. Ginny found herself practically intoxicated by Harry’s cologne and sometimes had to pay extra attention to what they were talking about in order to not get lost in thought. No thinking.
As soon as they strolled into Diagon Alley, Harry seemed to completely change. “Could we stop by the Quidditch shop first?” he asked like a child begging for sweets.
“I was about to ask the same thing,” was Ginny’s answer, as she picked up his mood. She felt somewhat like a child again herself.
“I haven’t been here in a fairly long time,” Ginny confessed as they continued down the alley. “I used to come by here a lot when I was living at home, but over the last few years I’ve been more worried about paying rent than I have going on outings to do nothing but window shop.”
Harry nodded. “I can understand that. I’m here almost every weekend though. Not much else to do at home, after all.”
Ginny wondered briefly if Harry lived alone or not, but didn’t feel it was her place to ask, and she didn’t exactly want to bring up a sore topic.
The Quidditch shop took up about an hour of their time as they each showed the other what they had been coveting. Ginny had her eye on the new Lightning Strike broom, which was an update on the old Fire Bolt. Harry showed Ginny some arm guards and gloves that he told her worked really well when the other team’s beaters liked aiming at you. Ginny laughed a bit, thinking he was joking then laughed even harder after seeing from his face that he wasn’t kidding.
After drooling over Quidditch for a while they resumed their walk down the alley. “Oh wait. Could we stop here? I love this store.” Harry turned toward the shop they were passing and Ginny felt her stomach drop.
“Here?” Ginny croaked. She cleared her throat immediately, but the damage had already been done.
“What’s wrong?” Harry asked as he looked up at the sign above Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes.
“Oh nothing really…except that my brother’s own this shop.”
Harry’s face, frozen in shock, turned to her disbelievingly for a moment. “I knew I recocgnized your last name! I had no idea they were your brothers though. I love these guys; they always give me a discount when I come here.”
“Well that’s not fair,” Ginny pouted. “They never give me a discount. I guess that’s because you’re the Boy Who Lived and I’m just their little sister.”
Looking from the store to Ginny, Harry’s face brightened. “Not today. Today you’re the girl on a date with the Boy Who Lived.”
Ginny’s heart leapt, but she kept her face calm. “That’s a very good point.”
As they entered the store a voice greeted them instead of the customary bell that was used in most muggle stores. “Welcome!” it said. Not very inventive this time around. She took one more step into the store. “Go away!” it said then in the same cheerful voice. Ginny sighed in exasperation. “It’s a wonder they get any patronage.” Harry just grinned at her.
Ginny suddenly had a very claustrophobic feeling and as she turned, she realized why. The Quidditch shop had been much roomier, but in a store already so full, the cameramen that had entered just behind them made the store seem smaller still.
Ginny heard Fred yell from the back, “We’ll be right with you,” but it was George that came out of the backroom.
“What the ¬—” George began but stopped at the heated look from Ginny. “What…are you doing here?” he modified.
“Harry and I happen to be on a date,” Ginny stated with determination as her face became suffused with red.
George gave Ginny a disbelieving glance before turning his attention to Harry. “How’s it going mate? Enjoying those fireworks, are you?”
“As always,” Harry answered with a laugh. The cameramen were spreading out behind them to get better views and as George noticed them, his face broke into an evil smile.
“Hey Fred, you wanna get out here for a bit?”
“Well, don’t be busy for a couple minutes and get out here.”
“Fine!” Fred accompanied his words and gave the cameras the same look that George had. Oh no.
Fred glanced away from the cameras and caught sight of Ginny. He looked confused for a moment before smiling even more wickedly and whispering something to George. Oh great, here it comes.
“Hey Gin, come here for a minute. We need a word with you.” Oh dear God, please, no. Ginny walked hesitantly toward her brothers.
“Fred here just noticed something rather odd.”
“Yeah, you seem to have…grown over night.”
Their eyes flickered down briefly and Ginny felt her face redden even more. Oh bloody Trista! I really don’t need this.
“Oh well,” Fred started.
“Must have been a mistake. I mean…”
“Our sister wouldn’t do something like that.” Fred and George were finishing each other’s sentences. Very bad sign.
While they had been talking, another customer had entered. He gave the cameras a brief look then ignored them. “Hey, where do you keep those canary creams?”
“Oh yeah, they’re over there on that really big rack,” George laughed as Fred spoke and Ginny felt like sinking in the floor.
“Yeah, thanks guys,” Ginny muttered sourly as she walked back over to Harry who was now inspecting some of the newer merchandise.
“Hey guys, what are these?” Harry asked lifting a box of something-or-other.
“Those? Ah, those are our newest inventions. Talking knockers. Door-knockers, I mean.” At this statement, Ginny thought she saw movement out of the corner on her eye. Fred stood not four paces away with his wand out. Well, I know where this is going, Ginny thought as she flipped her wand out, muttered “expelliarmus” and disarmed Fred before he could do his dastardly deed. Talking knockers, huh? Jerk.
“We’ll give you a discount if buy two,” George said, next to Harry.
“You know, a pair of knockers.” Fred was now directly behind Ginny, after having scrambled around for his wand, so thankfully he spoke quiet enough that Harry couldn’t hear.
When Ginny next looked, George had disappeared, but he made an appearance not long after when one of the cameramen cursed. “What’s going on?” another asked him.
“Get back over here boy, and get this off!” As it turned out, George had cast a spell on the lens of the camera that was publicity for the store. Ginny rolled her eyes as the boys continued to goof around for the cameras.
Harry finally bought himself a bag of tongue talkers, which made you speak in a different language for a couple of minutes. He seemed to think it would be a great joke to pull on Dudley. Whoever that is. He also bought another box of their wet start fireworks and a “Do-it-yourself Map Maker.” Harry just grinned at her when Ginny asked what it was for.
Ginny wanted to buy some canary creams for the girls but knew that Fred and George would give her a hard time (and make her pay full price) so she had Harry buy them for her and promised to pay him back.
The boys made a few more insinuations regarding Ginny’s sudden “growth” but none were very obvious so Harry didn’t seem to catch on, for which Ginny was exceedingly relieved. When Harry and Ginny had said goodbye and walked toward the door — right behind one of the cameramen who was walking backward to film them — Ginny saw George flick his wand, but wasn’t sure what he had done. As the door opened, she figured it out. “What a nice…pair,” the voice said.
“Oh yeah, speaking of ‘pear:’ if you two happen to come back this way, would you mind picking up some melons for us?”
“Yeah. Big ones.”
Ginny shot the boys a dirty look and fingered her wand, sending them a parting gift and a coy, “I think there’s something on your face, boys,” as she walked out grinning.
Fred and George had “I am a prat” written in large florescent blinking letters across their foreheads. The two looked at each other and laughed, commenting on how much like them their little sister had become.
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