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Blushes and Pranks
By drawjones

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Category: Pre-OotP, First Week Challenge (2008-2)
Genres: General, Humor
Warnings: Mild Language
Story is Complete
Rating: PG
Reviews: 30
Summary: Have you ever wondered what might happen if Harry made it on to the Hogwarts Express for his second year? Would it force Ginny and he to address her crush on him in a more straightforward manner than Canon? Set back and watch what happens as during the first week back, as no matter how desperately Ginny may want to avoid Harry, she can't. Harry, Ginny, and Gryffindor Tower may never be the same.
Hitcount: Story Total: 18152; Chapter Total: 4816

Author's Notes:
Here's Chapter 3. Once more, were it not for Ginny Guerra, this story wouldn't be here. I'd also like to take a moment to thank all the other people that have helped me get to this point, namely Mrs. Gayheart, my 7-8th grade English teacher that wouldn't let me settle for doing enough to get by.


Harry and Ginny both sighed heavily as they stepped through the portrait hole, into the common room. Snape had made them scrub the floor until well after curfew, and then he had initially refused to give them a note so that if they were caught out, they would not be given another detention. As they entered the room, they found themselves the only ones up.

“Figures,” Harry said aloud as he walked towards his favorite chair. With classes getting into full swing, but no one really having a lot of homework yet, most students were taking advantage of the opportunity to have long nights of sleep. Ginny silently followed, wincing with each step as her knees were still screaming in protest of having been on the hard stone floor for so long. She settled into the chair opposite Harry and began to rub her knees as silence fell between them.

They remained like that for a few moments, as they stretched and rubbed whatever muscles and bones were aching from their detention, until finally Ginny let out a loud yawn.

“Tired?” Harry asked as he yawned as well.

“Yeah,” Ginny replied, smiling softly.

“Then you should go to bed,” Harry advised, “Things are certainly going to pick up in the homework department rather quickly.”

Ginny nodded, but did not move to stand, “The same could be applied to you,” she finally answered.

“True,” Harry admitted, “But right now, my body’s aching too much to get to sleep.”

“Same here.”

“One thing is for certain,” Harry continued as he realized he was beginning to be comfortable enough around Ginny to tease her a bit. He only hoped she would take it the right way and not get angry or upset.

“Oh,” Ginny remarked, not certain what Harry was about to say, “And what’s that?”

“You’re the first I’ve ever done that with,” Harry replied as he watched Ginny beginning to blush.

“What?” she asked as she felt the heat begin to rise in her face.

“Scrubbing a classroom floor with a toothbrush, of course,” Harry answered.

Ginny just laughed softly as she swatted playfully at Harry, realizing he was having her on. Again silence fell between the pair. Harry stared into the dying fire, watching as occasional embers popped and flew glowing into the air. Soon, no more actual flames could be seen from the fire, but instead intensely glowing logs. Running his fingers through his hair, Harry looked up to Ginny.

“So, about getting Ron,” he began hesitantly, watching Ginny’s eyes as they lit up as the new topic. “Just what do you have in mind?”

Ginny smirked for a moment before moving to the edge of the chair. Glancing around to make certain no one had snuck into the common room; she began to speak softly but excitedly. As they spoke, Harry could not help but burst out laughing at times, while Ginny did the same at others. For nearly an hour they continued to set in the common room and plot about what they would do to Ron. Finally, as sleep began to overtake them, they stood and headed to their dormitories. As Harry disappeared up the staircase, Ginny paused, watching him disappear.

Making her way up towards the first year girls’ dormitories, a voice brought her to an abrupt halt just before she pushed the door open.

“So, what were you and Harry so interested in down in the common room just now?”

Turning around, Ginny found herself staring face to face with her inquisitor.

“Nothing important,” she answered, although it was obvious she was not being believed.

“Ginny, you were just talking to Harry, and laughing. That’s a pretty stark contrast to what Ron’s told me about your previous behavior around him. What’s going on?”

“Look, Hermione,” Ginny huffed, “Nothing is going on. Harry and I both happened to have detention tonight with Snape, and we both just happen agree that he’s a greasy haired git.”

As Hermione opened her mouth to persist, Ginny turned her back and opened the door to her dormitory. She disappeared into the darkness before Hermione could ask anything else. For a few moments, the bushy haired girl stood in the staircase, thinking about what she had seen and heard. She knew they were up to something, she just did not know what - yet.

The next morning, with a tenuous truce once more declared, Harry sat in the Great Hall at the Gryffindor table with Hermione and Ron. They were talking freely about how classes had been going thus far, and both Ron and Harry were rolling their eyes as Hermione began to insist they start preparing for exams at the end of the year.

Realizing that she was talking to a brick wall, Hermione decided to change the topic of conversation.

“So Harry…” she began, “…just what were you and Ginny talking about so late last night in the common room?”

Harry, who had been taking a drink of pumpkin juice at the time, choked, coughed and sputtered as he quickly sat the glass. Looking up, he saw that Ron’s eyes were glaring at him and that he had taken a very keen interest in the new topic of discussion.

“Nothing,” Harry blurted out a little too quickly as he noticed Ron’s brow furrow as he looked at him.

Realizing he had to come up with something quickly, Harry began again, “Errr… well, we both had a detention with Snape last night, and by the time we got back to the common room we just wanted to relax a bit before trying to sleep.”

At the mention of his detention with Snape, Harry saw Ron look away and the glare in his eyes disappear. Hermione though, continued to stare at him. As he met her eyes, Harry realized she knew he was not telling her something. Hermione opened her mouth as to protest, but then quickly closed it. Harry was grateful that she let it drop for the moment, but by the look in her eyes, he knew it would be brought up again, and sooner rather than later.

As the three stood up to head to class a bit early, they ran into Ginny and a blonde haired girl Harry recognized as a first year from Ravenclaw coming into the Great Hall. Ron just grunted in greeting as he continued on, and Hermione waved while offering a quick greeting. For her part, Ginny only blushed slightly as she passed Harry, and he managed a polite nod as they passed.

Watching the trio leave, Ginny and her companion stood at the entrance for just a moment more, talking quietly. Her companion had obviously noticed the interaction between Harry and Ginny and began to comment on it.

“Well, that’s certainly better than what I would expect after what you told me earlier,” she said as she glanced idly around the Great Hall.

Ginny nodded for a moment, as her blush faded. “Well, Luna,” she finally began, “It seems that for whatever reason these past couple of days, I’m winding up in more and more situations where it’s just Harry and me. “

Luna nodded in agreement as she finally focused her eyes back on Ginny. “Yes, I would imagine it’s hard to see Harry as a mythical hero when you have to see him on a regular basis.”

Ginny just looked at her blonde haired friend quizzically for a moment. “How would you know that?” she asked.

“Well, Ginny,” Luna replied, “It was pretty obvious the other night, before the Sorting Ceremony, that you had a huge crush on Harry Potter. But now, it seems as though you’re starting to see him as just Harry. I think that means you can be friends with him and get past a Hero worship type of crush.”

Ginny stood flabbergasted as her friend. “Luna, for someone whom people have already started calling Loony, you are remarkably insightful,” Ginny offered.

Luna just stared back at her friend but said nothing. She continued glance around the room, before starting to speak once more, “Well, I’ve never really cared what other people thought of me. I know the truth, and in the end that’s all that’s important.”

Ginny smiled in response. It was obvious to her that the trust she had began to place in the slightly odd blonde haired girl was not misplaced. She made more sense than a lot of people older than her, and even if she did seem to mark to the beat of a metal triangle rather than a drum, then it was no big deal.

“So just how have you gotten to where you only mildly blush when Harry’s within sight?” Luna finally asked as she turned her gaze once more towards Ginny.

Ginny laughed softly as she watched Luna’s eyes become intently focused on her, waiting for a response. Luna may be a bit odd, but she’s still a girl after all, Ginny thought to herself before answering.

“Well, it seems like Harry and I have something in common to work towards,” Ginny answered as Luna narrowed her eyebrows in confusion.

Leaning in closer to Luna, and motioning with her hand for the blonde haired girl to do the same, Ginny whispered, “Ron’s in serious need of payback for being a right prat these past few days.”

Both girls laughed softly as Ginny then began to detail to Luna what Harry and she had planned for Ron. No one else in the Great Hall paid the laughing girls’ quiet conversation any attention, except for two identical expert sets of eyes. Both knew all too well that a quiet Ginny Weasley, or a quietly laughing Ginny Weasley spelled trouble, and with capital letters. As the twins watched, they could only hope their sister’s devious nature was turned and focused on someone else, at least until they had the chance to corner her and figure out what was going on.

Later that evening, Harry, Ron and Hermione sat in the library studying quietly. It was only Thursday, but Harry was already beginning to feel the pressures of the mounting homework. Ron and he both agreed that the professors seemed to feel that they had forgotten everything from first year and therefore felt as though they would have to teach it all over again, in addition to the whole of second year. Feeling as though his brain would explode, Harry closed the book before him and stood up.

Taking a moment to stretch, Harry slowly walked away from the table and towards the shelves of books. As he slowly made his way around the library, trying to get his mind off of the Transfiguration assignment that he was failing to understand, Harry noticed Neville setting at a table by himself. Still feeling a bit uneasy about where he stood with Neville, given all that had happened at the end of the last year, Harry tentatively made his way toward the fellow Gryffindor.

As he approached, Harry saw Neville glance up and smile briefly before going back to his book. Deciding that there was no better opportunity than the present, Harry continued walking towards Neville and stopped just in front of him. Neville paused from his reading to once more glance up.

“Hey Neville,” Harry began. “Got a minute?”

“Sure, Harry,” he answered as he set his book to the side and motioned for Harry to sit across from him.

Harry felt himself relax a bit as he sat down. Neville did not seem to be holding any lingering feelings about what had happened the year before. Harry could not have blamed him though, if he had still been a bit angry about the body binding curse when he had stood up to them the year before — even if it had wound up winning Gryffindor the House Cup.

Both boys sat in silence for a minute before Harry finally spoke up. “So how’s the year starting out for ya?” he asked, not really know how or what else he could say.

“Ah, better than last year I would say,” Neville answered. “It would be even better if we didn’t have so much homework already,” he continued as he motioned to the numerous pieces of parchment and open books he had in front of him.

“Yeah,” Harry answered as he laughed softly. “I’m afraid it can only get worse from here, though. Although there are some of us that seem to be grateful for homework.” At that, Harry turned and glanced quickly back towards the table he had came from where Hermione was still working furiously on some unknown assignment.

As he turned back around, Neville began to laugh softly. “Yeah, but she’s the smartest witch in our class for a reason,” Neville replied.

Both boys then quickly fell into light conversation. Although neither broached the subject of what had happened the year before, it was obvious to Harry there were no lingering hard feelings. Just as he was about to stand and walk away though, Neville asked him something that made Harry freeze in his seat.

“So, Harry,” Neville began, “I know it’s none of my business, but what was Hermione so curious about this morning at breakfast?”

For a moment, Harry considered telling Neville it was none of his business, but then he realized that Neville was not like Hermione, and certainly would not react the way Hermione would. Quickly deciding that he could trust Neville, Harry told him about his and Ginny’s plans. Soon, both Harry and Neville were laughing softly until Madam Pince came over and shushed them both quite aggressively and threatened to throw them out.

Soon, Harry and Neville said their goodbyes and Harry once more rejoined Hermione and Ron to finish his homework. It was much later that night, just before curfew, when the trio emerged into the Gryffindor Common Room.

“Look,” Ron proclaimed loudly as they looked around at the nearly abandoned room, “I told you. There was no need to stay in the library studying that late.” His gaze fixed directly on Hermione as he pointed his finger vaguely at the room behind him. “We could have been in here relaxing and not dealing with all that homework. It’s not even all due tomorrow.”

Hermione just huffed and ignored Ron. Even Harry had to admit she had been adamant that they got their homework done that evening and not leave any for the next day. Although Ron made a point Harry silently agreed with, it would remain that, a silent agreement. While Harry may have enjoyed the time off, he had to admit too though, now there were pretty much done in all their classes and would likely wind up with an excess of free time when the weekend came.

Listening to Ron continue to huff and puff as he made his way towards the boys’ dormitories, Harry quietly took a seat near the fireplace. Hermione looked at him oddly for a moment.

“So, you’re not going to bed like Ron?” she finally asked as she stood over him looking down.

Harry sighed. He knew where the conversation was about to lead and he had no intention of answering any question that she may ask about what Ginny and he were up to.

“Not right now,” he replied smoothly, doing his best to keep the irritation out of his voice. “I’m still awake, so I think I’ll do a bit of Defense reading and then head up.” As he spoke, he began digging in his bag, and a moment later, produced his aforementioned Defense book and began to open it.

Hermione looked at him curiously for a moment. By the feel of her eyes on his neck, Harry could tell that she did not entirely believe him, but he hoped that because Defense was his favorite class, she might be at least willing to entertain his statement had some grain of truth to it. Finally, after he had actually read over the first two pages of the chapter he was looking at, Hermione sighed softly.

“Alright, Harry, I’m tired and I’ll going to bed. Don’t stay up too late.”

With that she turned and walked towards the girls dormitories, disappearing up the stairway a moment later.

Harry remained alone in the common room for another few minutes as he continued to read the chapter. Soon, he had finished the chapter, and although it had not been his intent, had actually learned a few useful items. Turning glance around the room, Harry saw that he was still alone. Letting out a soft breath through his open mouth, Harry turned his attention back to his book and began the next chapter.

Just as he finished reading the introduction, Harry heard movement behind him. Turning, he looked up just in time to see Ginny making her way over towards him.

“Bloody took you all long enough,” she snapped as she sat down across from him. “I never thought you all would get back, and then Hermione comes in to check on how all the first year girls are doing on their assignments.”

Harry laughed softly as he thought of his friend. He knew most likely she would have them study schedules drawn up before the end of the week.

“Don’t laugh, Potter,” Ginny said menacingly, “You weren’t the one getting lectured about going to bed before an assigned essay is finished for the past thirty minutes.”

Harry only nodded before responding, “Yeah, but you weren’t the one who was in the library with her for hours before that, being physically made to complete the essays before you left.”

Ginny remained silent for a moment, as Harry seemed to have made a very valid point in her mind.

“Alright,” she finally began, “I’ll give you that one, but enough about class and homework. We’ve got a prank to plan.” As she finished that statement, her eyes began to glint mischievously and a grin broke out across her face.

Harry could not help but smile at the enjoyment he saw on her face. Ginny loved a good prank and the fact that she was going to get even with her prat of a brother only made it that much better. They began to talk quietly as they worked out the who’s, what’s and how’s of just what in the world they wanted to do.

Soon enough, they had a general concept of what they wanted to do to Ron in place; the only problem came to be the actual logistics of it. Fortunately for Ginny, she had procured, through less than honest means; an invention of the twins that she was certain would be perfect for humbling Ron in front of the Great Hall at breakfast. The only remaining issue, though, was figuring out just how in the name of Merlin to get it in his food, without anyone being any the wiser.

After thinking it over for a few minutes, both had to admit they were completely and utterly stumped as to how to succeed. Harry was running his fingers through his hair in frustration while Ginny chewed on her lower lip in concentration as neither noticed two identical red heads slip quietly into the room. As Harry and Ginny continued to brainstorm, the twins made their way silently over towards the fireplace.

Having aroused no suspicion, they both leapt across the sofa at the same time, landing softly onto the cushions, but startling both Harry and Ginny to the point that Harry jumped into the air and Ginny let out a yelp.

“Well, what do we have here, Fred,” George asked with a huge grin on his face as a blush immediately appeared on Ginny.

“It appears to me that ickle Ginnikins and ickle Harrikins are alone in the common room,” replied Fred.

The grins on their faces and insinuation in the tones of their voices made it all too apparent what they were implying. Feeling a blush beginning to rise in his own cheeks, Harry decided to cut them off before they had both Ginny and him blushing beet red and so tongue tied that they might agree to something that was not true at all.

“It’s nothing like that,” he finally blurted out as he quickly looked between the twins. Looking over to Ginny, he silently asked her permission to fill them in. After a noncommittal shrug of her shoulders, he continued, “You see, two people typically want to be alone when they are busy plotting and planning revenge on a prat that’s been begging for a good prank.”

For the briefest of moments, the grins were wiped clean off the twins’ faces. Instead, their mouths hung open and they stared back and forth between Harry and Ginny, before turning to look at one another. As they turned back to Harry and Ginny, even larger grins were plastered on their faces and Harry felt himself beginning to grow uneasy.

Wiping an imaginary tear from the corner of his eye, Fred began, “Ginny, we’re so proud…”

“Not even a week into school and you’re starting to follow in our footsteps,” George continued so smoothly, that Harry almost forgot to move his eyes to the new speaker.

“Why, it was almost a month into our first year before George and I plucked up the courage to start with the pranks,” Fred added.

Suddenly, both twins quickly reached out and pulled Ginny and Harry into hugs as they made sniffling sounds. “You make us so proud,” they mock cried in unison as Harry and Ginny both struggled to pull away.

“GrrOff!” Ginny shouted as she struggled to free herself from Fred’s grasp. His response was only to clutch her more tightly and begin fake sobs of joy against her. “And why would I do that?” he asked as she continued to fight and struggle against him.

“You will if you want to be a part of this,” she huffed as she continued to struggle in his arms.

At her words, the twins immediately released Harry and Ginny. Their fake tears were immediately dried and their grins were now replaced with looks of the utmost seriousness. For Fred and George both, there were times to joke and times to be serious. The discussion and planning of a prank was one of the latter.

As the twins stood waiting to hear more, Ginny reached out and smacked Fred hard on the arm.

“Ow!” Fred cried out as he rubbed his arm. “Why did you do that to me?”

“Because you didn’t let go of me the first time I asked,” Ginny snapped back before a grin broke out across her face and was quickly matched by Fred, before he simply nodded his head and once more assumed the serious look he had moments before.

Looking over to Harry, Ginny giggled as she realized they now had the full and undivided attention of the twins. Nodding his head, Harry indicated for Ginny to take the lead and fill the twins in on what was going on. It only took a few minutes for her to have them quickly up to speed on what Harry and she had decided to do.

Harry could only laugh at how she made it a point to outright ignore the look of shock and the immediate questions about how she had gotten their prototype creation when she explained what their prank actually entailed. As she began to explain to them the hang up Harry and she had encountered in the actual execution of the prank, though, the grins once more returned to the twins’ faces as they looked excitedly back and forth between one another.

“So you see, we’ve got everything lined up, except for how to get the agents into the food without arising suspicion,” Ginny concluded as the twins seemed ready to explode with giddiness.

“Quite ingenious,” Fred began.

“Quite devious,” George answered.

“Rather mean,” Fred continued.

“But we like it,” George completed.

“I’m glad you two approve,” Harry remarked, “But that does little to solve our problem.”

With an overly exaggerated wink, George whispered loudly, “That’s not a problem at all. We know just the way to do it.”

This time, it was Harry and Ginny’s turn to turn and look at one another before breaking out into wide grins. As they fell silent, the twins quickly filled them in on just how they could get the prank to go off without a hitch and without anyone knowing who was at fault. Deciding that breakfast on Saturday would be the best time to pull the prank, the foursome quickly bid one another a good night and headed up to their respective dormitories to get some rest for the next day, or more importantly, for the next evenings pranking activities.

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