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SIYE Time:14:59 on 1st July 2022


The Worst/Best Valentine's Day
By Celtics534

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Category: Post-OotP, Pumpkin Juice Challenge (2018-2), Pumpkin Juice Challenge (2018-2)
Characters:Harry/Ginny, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley
Genres: Humor, Romance
Warnings: Mild Language, Mild Sexual Situations
Story is Complete
Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 9
Summary: ** Winner for Best Overall & Most Humorous in the Pumpkin Juice Challenge
They say all's fair in love and war, but why would the entirety of Hogwarts be either falling in love or biting each others heads off? Maybe it has something to do with the date, February 14th or maybe the pumpkin juice?
Hitcount: Story Total: 3524
Awards: View Trophy Room


Disclaimer: Harry Potter Publishing Rights © J.K.R. Note the opinions in this story are my own and in no way represent the owners of this site. This story subject to copyright law under transformative use. No compensation is made for this work.



Author's Notes:
Set during the Half Blood Prince. The prompt that led to this situation was: "Tis the Valentines feast at Hogwarts, and something is odd. The pumpkin juice tastes suspiciously good, and all who drink it are behaving strangely. Uh oh."




ChapterPrinter


A loud screech was the first thing Harry heard as he approached the Great Hall on Valentine’s Day. Not something that was normal, but not completely out of the ordinary either, especially on a day like today. Harry couldn’t tell if it was a happy “Oh, Merlin, my boyfriend just gave me the best present” screech, or “You’re a horrible boy! How dare you forget about this day!” shriek. Personally, Harry kind of wanted it to be the latter, more interesting to watch a scene like that instead of snogging.

Upon arriving at the open hall doors, he could see the commotion was happening at the Gryffindor table… near the spot he, Ron, and Hermione usual sat. Well, where they use to sit before Ron started dating Lavender Brown. Now it was typically just him and Hermione, and Ginny if she was fighting with Dean.

Ginny. A name he tried to keep out of his head. A name that sent shivers down his spine and was accompanied by mental images that would make Ron want to kill him. He had been fighting the hold her name had on him for months, but on a day like today it was going to come into his mind often, and most likely with slight bitterness.

As he reached the table, Harry noticed it wasn’t just the Gryffindor table involved in the commotion. As a matter of fact, the entire hall was acting oddly. In front of him, Lavender Brown and her best friend, Parvati Patil, were arguing with each other. All around the room raised voices were adding to the cacophony. Over at the Hufflepuff table, Ernie MacMillan and Susan Bones were tightly embraced. Luna Lovegood’s dreamy voice could be heard having a tense discussion with Terry Boot. Dean Thomas had faced off with Colin Creevey farther down the Gryffindor table and Pansy Parkinson could be heard screeching at Gregory Goyle clear across the hall. People were paired off into arguments, heated discussions, or glued to each other’s lips.

Harry stopped dead in his tracks five feet from his normal dining spot. What was happening? On a regular Valentine’s Day people would be… well, for a lack of a better word, cuddly. Oddly, however, there were some strange pairings, and some of them were not romantic.

Looking towards his house table for anyone not going insane, Harry noticed Ginny watching the scene with amusement at the far end of the table. Her eyes sparkled with that mischievous glint he had always admired in Fred and George, and now found adorable in her.

Though he had been planning to avoid her today, especially because he didn’t want a repeat of the infamous “Corridor Snog”, he did want a friendly face to explain the current climate of the Great Hall. He walked over to her slowly, trying to make sure his mind was clear of all “inappropriate Ginny thoughts”.

“Hey, Ginny, what is — “Harry started to ask, but Ginny made a shushing gesture.

She pointed over towards her boyfriend and Colin. She was shaking with silent laughter as she said, “Look at those fools. I have no idea what got into them, but they are acting mad.”

“Do you know what they are fighting about?” Harry questioned with a raised eye brow.

That made Ginny laugh out loud. “That’s the dumbest part. They’re arguing over me.”

Harry’s brow rose high into his fringe. Why would Colin be fighting with Dean over Ginny? He knew why he wanted to fight Dean over Ginny, but Colin?

“Er… Why?”

“Apparently,” Ginny let her voice drawl, “Colin has had fancied me for years and today,” laughter started to fill her voice again, “he decided he was going to admit “his love” for me. Instead of telling me, however,” she had to place her arm around her stomach as her laughter almost became uncontrollable, “he told Dean.”

Harry’s mouth fell into a perfect oval shape. “Why the hell would he do that?” he asked.

Ginny started to wave her hand in front of her. “I have no bloody clue.” She gestured around the hall with an underhand wave. “There is something strange going around the hall, because it’s not just Dean and Colin.”

She pointed directly at Pansy and Goyle. “Get ready for this one. They are fighting over Malfoy.” She broke out into a new round of giggles.

Harry could have sworn a Beater’s bat hit him over the head. “Goyle has a thing for Malfoy?”

Ginny nodded, unable to speak through her laughter. Harry found himself starting to chuckle. He had no idea why this was happening, but the idea of Goyle hitting on Malfoy was enough to make him find the humor in the situation.

“What about Luna and Terry?” He asked.

His companion threw her head back with renewed laughter. Harry was afraid she was going to forget to breath with the amount of laughing she was doing. Though unbidden, in his mind he saw an image of him giving Ginny mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, something he had seen at the Muggle doctor’s as a child.

“Those two,” Ginny finally said, her face the same color as her hair as she turned to face him, “have been fighting over who has the best hair in Ravenclaw house.” She took a couple of deep breaths to prevent another outbreak of giggles. “I can’t explain it, but people are fighting over something or someone, or just straight up snogging." Her face became suddenly serious. “Strangely though, it seems to be select people.”

Harry gave her a quizzical look. “Why would that be?”

She shrugged. “No idea, but it’s making for good entertainment.”

His over-curious mind took control, as he looked around at all the tables. There were many couples, just arguing, or at least having a loud discussion. Others just sat on the benches, like he and Ginny, watching. While others seemed oblivious to the world as their lips were glued together.

“Hey guys,” tall and lanky Ron said as he reached their spot along the table. His face was downcast as he took the seat next to Harry and loaded his plate with eggs and bacon.

“Why is your wand in a knot?” Ginny asked her brother curiously.

Ron released one of the most dramatic sighs Harry had ever heard. He felt his eyebrows raise as he took a quick look at Ginny. Her expression matched his.

“It’s Lavender,” Ron’s voice dripped with depression.

“What about Lavender?” Harry couldn’t prevent himself from asking, though he sounded timid even to his own ears.

“Apparently, she is in love with Parvati now,” He heaved another dramatic sigh.

Harry felt his mouth fall open, as he fought a stranger urge to laugh. Since when had Lavender fancied girls? Ginny didn’t contain her laughter. She let out one giggle, then another, and another. She slapped her hand over her mouth to cover up her noise.

Instead of the usual Ron reaction, an explosion of anger, he just gave his sister another depressed look and grabbed a goblet of pumpkin juice. He drank deeply, spilling a large amount over his shirt.

Harry thought his eye brows must have fallen off his forehead, as he watched Ron’s actions. Again, he glanced at Ginny. She seemed concerned for her brother. This wasn’t a normal thing. Something was wrong with Ron.

“Ron, mate…” Harry let his voice hang as he looked as his friend cautiously. “Are you feeling okay?”

Ron removed his head from his drink, and placed it back down onto the table. He turned to look at Harry. His eyes were slightly glazed over, and the color had gone from a normal dark blue to something more teal.

“Harry, have I ever told you that I love your eyes?” Ron asked in a dreamy voice that would have made Luna Lovegood proud. “They are just so… so — “ He let his voice trail off.

Harry’s jaw went slack as Ron continued to stare at him. He was unable to speak. Never had he thought he would be put into this situation. His best friend, best male friend was trying to find a word to describe his eyes. This was weird beyond belief. He turned towards Ginny, hoping to see the shock and confusion, he felt, on her face. He, however, received one of the most wicked, delighted, beautiful smiles he had ever seen on her. She looked as if Christmas had just come early, and she had received a large package of pranking equipment to use on her brothers. Which, he figured, this situation was close to the best prank she could pull.

“I think the word you’re looking for, dear brother,” Ginny said in a sickly-sweet voice, “is hypnotic.”

Harry groaned as Ron snapped his fingers together. He then he gave his sister two thumbs up. “That’s it, Gin. Thanks!” He turned back to Harry. “Your eyes are hypnotic, Harry.”

Harry glared at Ginny. If looks could kill, he thought this could send someone six feet under. Ginny just grinned at him. She reached across Harry, to where Ron was sitting, and grabbed his hand. “How do you feel about Harry’s hair, Ron?”

Ron let out a dreamy sigh, something that made Harry wish he was six feet under. “You just want to… I don’t know, run your hands through it, don’t cha, Gin?”

Ginny strained to keep her voice level as she said, “Oh, I quite agree, Ron. You just want to stare into his eyes, run your fingers and thumbs through those messy locks, and kiss those nice thin lips.”

On any other day, Harry would have been thrilled to hear Ginny say those things about him. Today, however, was not the day for this. Especially, seeing as she was talking to her brother about those actions.

Ron nodded enthusiastically. Facing Voldemort right now would be better than this, Harry felt his face flush. At least with Voldemort he wouldn’t be trying to hit on me. He would just kill me.

“Which Weasley do you think is Harry’s favorite,” Ron asked his sister in a stage whisper. “Do you think it’s me? Do you think I have a chance?”

Ginny was now shaking with her silent laughter. She’s enjoying this all too much Harry thought.

“No, Ron,” Ginny loudly whispered back to her brother. Her voice sounded sympathetic as she said, “It must be Mum. I mean, she feeds him all the time.”

Ron looked aghast. He turned to Harry with an ashen face. “Do you really like Mum the best, Harry?”

“No!” Harry exclaimed, making Ginny give one quick guffaw. She quickly contained her mirth. Harry’s face started to feel warm. “I mean,” he started to splutter. “Your mum is great! Really great!”

Ron’s face looked gleeful again. “Oh, does that mean I am your favorite?” Ron’s voice held way too much excitement. Harry’s head was spinning. What the bloody hell was happening today?

“Ginny!” Harry blurted out, unable to think properly. Both Ron and Ginny looked at him with surprised expressions.

“Me?” Ginny asked at the same time Ron complained, “Ginny!”

If Harry thought his face was warm before, now it must have been on fire… on the sun. He wanted to leave the room. Really, he wanted to leave the entirety of the Hogwarts grounds.

Maybe I can convince Dumbledore to let Lupin homeschool me, Harry thought wildly.

A perfect distraction arrived just in time, before Harry could crawl under the table, in the form of Hermione Granger. She had just walked past the large doors. Ron seemed to notice her as well. He waved at her violently from across the hall, beckoning her towards them. She looked confused and cautious, but she walked over toward the trio.

“Hello,” Hermione said it a slow voice. She took a quick stock of the scene. When her eyes landed on Harry and his almost luminescent face she asked, “Harry, are you okay?”

Harry was about to tell her he was fine, when Ron spoke up, “Hermione have you ever wanted to run your hands through Harry’s hair?”

Hermione’s brow rose towards the enchanted ceiling. Ginny, however, couldn’t contain her laughter any more. She released a large belly laugh while she threw her head backwards.

“Honestly, no, Ronald. I’ve never really thought about running my hands through Harry’s hair.” Hermione kept her voice level. She looked from Ron to Harry in confusion. All Harry could do was shake his head.

Hermione turned her attention to Ginny, looking for an answer. It took her nearly a full thirty seconds, but Ginny eventually recovered enough to say, “He took a drink of pumpkin juice, and,” giggles started to return as she pressed on, “and he then fell in love with Harry’s eyes.”

Hermione looked warily at the goblet set in front of Ron. Meanwhile, Ron was muttering under his breath about sister who stole Harry, which effectively sent Ginny on another laughing tangent.

Picking up the cup, Hermione took a quick whiff of the contents. She pulled a sour face. “Well,” her voice was dripping with concern. “If I didn’t know better I would say the pumpkin juice has been spiked with Nectar of Aphrodite.”

Ginny stopped laughing to look at the brown-haired girl. At the same time, her and Harry asked, “What’s that?”

Hermione let out an indignant sigh. “It’s a lesser known love potion. It’s rather tame next to Amortentia.” She placed the goblet under Harry’s nose. Harry could smell the usual scents of pumpkin juice, but with a hint of something with else. Maybe lemon? Something citrus-like.

Hermione continued her lesson. “It makes the drinker fall in love with the first person they see.” Hermione placed air quotes around fall in love. “It only lasts for about an hour.”

Harry felt his shoulders sag. He hadn’t even known he had been holding tension there. “So,” Harry finally could speak again, “What do I do till it wears off?”

Ginny laughed, “Let him down easy, Harry. He will be crushed when this is all over. I say you play along.”

Harry shook his head. He did not want to stare into his best mate’s eyes and pretend to be entranced with the shape and color. No, there was only one Weasley he wanted to do that with.

People around the hall seemed to be coming around. Harry watched as Ernie and Susan backed away from each other gingerly, blushing vividly. He saw Goyle turn an intense red, and leave the Slytherin table.

“Ginny,” A voice spoke quietly from Harry’s blind spot. Dean had come over. His face was tinged pink. “I’m sorry about that thing with Colin. I- I don’t know what came over me.”

Ginny gave Dean a small smile, “It’s fine, Dean. We can just forget it ever happened.” She winked at Harry. “Just don’t drink any more pumpkin juice.”

Dean looked confused but nodded. “Would you like to go for a walk?”

Ginny glanced at her boyfriend. Though, Harry might have imagined it, he could have sworn she shot him a look as well. She shrugged her shoulder. “Sure.”

She stood up from her spot. She gave her dazed brother a quick hug and kiss on the cheek, which he tried to brush off, still complaining about Harry stealing sisters. Hermione received a hug as well. Finally, she turned back to Harry and wrapped her arms around his neck. She leaned her head over his shoulder and said in something barely over a whisper, “Just so you know, you’re my favorite Potter, Harry.” Then she headed to Dean’s side and they walked out of the hall.

This is, Harry thought bitterly as he watched Ginny’s swaying hips walk away, the worst Valentine’s Day ever. First the wrong Weasley sibling fell in love with me and now I can’t even have a cup of bloody pumpkin juice.

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Th e day slowly returned to normal after the scene in the Great Hall, though everyone was wary at lunch. They continued with their classes as if no one had swallowed a love potion. Oddly though, none of the teachers said anything. They seemed to act as if the morning drama had never happened.

Ron, once he had come around, had decided to spend the day with Neville. It was obvious Ron felt awkward about the scene he had caused during breakfast. To be completely honest, Harry didn’t mind the distance. He, too, felt awkward about breakfast.

Harry and Hermione sat together, eating the steak and kidney pie the elves had made for that day’s lunch, when Ginny plopped down next to the black-haired boy. She moodily grabbed a plate of the steaming pie and started stabbing at it with her fork.

“What’s eating you?” Harry asked curiously. Even though he was embarrassed about that mornings events, he put his issues aside to help the red head.

“It’s Dean,” Ginny vented, “he’s driving me mental. He is being an over-protective macho man. I walked out of Charms today with Colin and Luna, and Dean freaked out.” She threw her fork down on the table. “I just don’t get it. It was funny when it was between him and Colin, because I thought it was a joke. Apparently, he really is really jealous of my male friends. I grew up with six brothers, I’m use to hanging around with boys.”

Hermione gave her a sympathetic look. “So, what are you going to do about it, Ginny? Do you want to break up with him?” she asked. Harry could have sworn she sent him a hopeful look.

Ginny ran a hand through her hair. “That’s the thing. I think I already did.” She had a slightly guiltily look on her face. “I told him I didn’t like how he was acting, and he just kind of looked at me blankly. Which angered me more, so… I told him maybe we should keep our distance from each other till he learned not to be a git.”

“Are you okay with that?” Hermione asked.

Ginny let out a sigh and picked up her fork again. “To be honest, I feel relief. I had started to feel like he was suffocating me. He called himself a gentleman, when he helped me into the common room , I personally, call him a prat trying to put his hands on my arse as I walked through the portrait hole. “

Harry felt as if rage bubbled in his gut. How dare Dean… How dare he even think… Harry’s mind couldn’t make complete sentences. It took a few minutes for him to tune back into what Hermione and Ginny were discussing.

“Next time you should choose someone better,” Hermione said, giving Harry a suggestive glance. With a sudden flash, Harry’s mind drifted back to the train last year. Ron saying and doing the same thing Hermione had just done. Confusion hit Harry like a bus. Had Ron been hinting at Harry to date Ginny?

“I don’t know Hermione,” Ginny let out a dramatic sigh. “I had thought Dean was better. Turns out he was just as bad as Michael, just in a different way.”

“Well, I’m sure you’ll find your knight in shining armor soon.” If Hermione kept rolling her eyes in Harry’s direction, they would get stuck. “Who knows, maybe he is in this very room.”

Ginny snorted. “Yeah, well, we are in the Great Hall, at lunch, most blokes our age are in this room right now.”

Hermione let out a defeated sigh. “What are your plans for Valentine’s Day then, Ginny?”

“Well, I figured I would go eat all the chocolate Dean gave me before we came down to breakfast this morning. I have free period now, and if a break up isn’t a reason to gorge on chocolate, what is?”

Hermione’s eyes sparked mischievously, something the Weasley twins would have been proud of. “Oh, that’s a good idea, but you don’t want to eat too much. You’ll make yourself sick. You should share it with someone, so you don’t over eat.” She turned to Harry. “You enjoy chocolate, Harry, don’t you?” She looked back at Ginny. “How about sharing with Harry. He has a free period now, too.”

Harry’s mouth was agape. Hermione was trying to set him up, even he could tell. Since when did Hermione mess with his romantic life?

Ginny laughed. “I’m a Weasley, Hermione. Trust me I won’t get sick eating, but,” she looked at Harry, “if you want some you’re more than welcome to join me in a Valentine’s Day chocolate eating contest.”

Harry couldn’t stop the grin from growing on his face. He got to spend his free time with Ginny, no bothers nearby, no boyfriend, and there would be chocolate. “Sure, Ginny.”

She beamed at him and started eating her pie without so much anger. Hermione, too, beamed at him while giving him a knowing look. Harry rubbed the back of his neck without meeting her eyes. How long did someone need to recover from a break-up before being asked out again?

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

It turned out that most boys thought a girl needed no time to recover from a break-up. News about Ginny and Dean had spread like wildfire. While making their way to the common room, boys would constantly interrupt their conversation to talk to Ginny. Every time he and Ginny were talking, laughing, having a good time, they would ask her on a date. Some asked her to study with them, some asked if she would like to go for a walk around the snow-covered grounds, and one, Harry’s least favorite, asked if she wanted to get cozy by the fire later in the Gryffindor common room.

Ginny shot them all down, politely, but every time she made her way back over to Harry she was grimacing. “I just don’t get it,” she said once they enter the almost empty common room. They took a corner table, away from the other Gryffindors studying. She pulled out a large bar of Honeyduke’s Finest and split it in half, she handed the slightly smaller portion to Harry.

“What?” Harry asked around his chocolate filled mouth.

Ginny leaned in close, making Harry breath in deeply, filling his lungs with her incredible scent. She was right next to him, tantalizingly close. “Why did someone put that love potion in the pumpkin juice this morning?”

Harry tried to draw his mind back to reality. He was imagining himself and Ginny, cozy by the fireplace, just like the git from earlier suggested. His hands around her waist. With a tremendous effort he focused. “I don’t know,” he said slowly, “it seems kinda harmless.”

“Compared to the outside world,” Ginny muttered darkly, “but to a bunch of teenagers, who freak out because of pimples, love is dramatic.”

Harry tried to understand. To him, issues were Quirrell stealing the Stone, or seeing flashes into Voldemort’s mind, but most students didn’t have those issues. Those were Harry’s problems. Most people had to worry about who fancied whom, and if they had a date to Hogsmeade.

“Alright,” Harry relented, “I see your point, but still I wouldn’t consider it Death Eater level.”

“Nor would I,” Ginny shook her head. “But it’s still something. Why did some people argue, while Ron was all lovely dovey?”

Harry flinched remembering Ron’s act towards him. “I don’t know, but I know how to find out.” He pulled out his copy of Advance Potion Making, and looked in the index. Once he found the correct page he turned to it. The Prince hadn’t written much, just one word at above the potion’s name; “Pointless”.

“Apparently, the Prince wasn’t a fan,” Harry muttered to Ginny as he started to look at symptoms. “Okay, so it says here that the drink will make the drinker act the opposite from their usual romantic self, but they will fall in love with the first person they see.”

“Oh!” Ginny exclaimed throwing her head backwards. “That explains Ron.”

“What do you mean?”

Ginny started to giggle, but leaned back to look at Harry. “Think about it. The way he sees romance is the way he acts with Hermione.”

Arguing, Harry realized. Ron thinks fighting is flirting. He started to join in her laughter.

“But that doesn’t answer…” Ginny started when a distraction came in the form of Dean Thomas. He was glaring at Harry as he said,

“Ginny, do you think we could talk?” His voice was soft and pleading. Ginny turned to face the fellow Gryffindor. Harry felt a wave of panic, he didn’t want Ginny to go with Dean… Talking with Dean could lead to bad things, like getting back together.

Fortunately for him, Ginny seemed to hear his silent prayers to all the Gods he knew, when she said, “Dean, to be honest, I have no interest in talking to you. I wasn’t kidding when I said I wanted some distance. If anything, you’re making me want to talk to you less.” She turned to Harry. “Do you want to go to kitchens with me, Harry?”

Harry, for his part, wasn’t hungry. They had just had half a bar of chocolate each plus lunch, but he wanted to be with Ginny, so he was willing to gorge. “Alright.” He picked up his bag and followed her as she led the way out of the common room. He could practically hear Dean grinding his teeth to dust.

“What a git,” Ginny said angrily as she walked down the corridor. Harry internally agreed, but he knew it was for a different reason than Ginny’s. Though Ginny was shorter than him, Harry had to move quickly to keep up with her.

“So, why the kitchens?” Harry asked trying to distract her.

“That’s where the pumpkin juice came from,” she started to slow down, as her mind started to think about things other than Dean Thomas. “We can ask one of the elves if they saw anyone or anything suspicious.”

Harry couldn’t help but admire her thought process. “Wow, have you thought about becoming an Auror, Gin?”

Ginny slowed to her normal speed, as she started to laugh. “No way. I don’t want to be stuck at the Ministry every day. “

“What do you want to do, then?” Harry blurted. He hadn’t intended on asking her that, and he was about to back track. He had no right to pry, but then she answered,

“I want to play professional Quidditch. I have a feeling McGonagall won’t like that answer much.”

“I could see that,” Harry said, “well, actually, I could see both of those things.”

Ginny stopped in the middle of the fourth-floor hall. She turned to look at him, “You really think I could make it professionally?” Her face was alight with enthusiasm, but he could also see some insecurity in her chocolate brown eyes.

“Yeah, you would be great and I’m not just saying that as your friend, but also as your captain.”

Ginny smiled at him, something that made his stomach swoop. He had been seeing how incredible she was all year, but having the full effect pressed on him… In such close quarters…The way she was looked at him… Harry started to lean in towards her. She seemed to be moving towards him as well. The gap between them closing; ten inches, six inches, four… The sound of the bell made them jump apart.

Scraping of chairs could be heard from the classrooms around them. “Er,” Harry started, “we should probably head to class.” His hand started rubbing the back of his neck.

Ginny gave him a hard look, as if trying to preform Legilimency, then she shook her head. “I have History of Magic and Binns won’t notice if I’m not there. What are you supposed to have? I want to go talk to the house-elves , if you still want to come?”

“Uh,” Harry’s mind was still trying to come down from the high of almost kissing her. “Potions, but Slughorn will let me slide this one time.”

Ginny beamed at him and nodded her head down the corridor, towards the direction of the kitchens.

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX XXX

The house-elves were little to no help. Harry and Ginny asked them a bunch of questions about someone odd being with them before breakfast, but the elves just denied it. They all claimed it was a normal day for the house-elves of Hogwarts. Then they sent them on their way so they could prepare dinner.

“Well, I’m out of ideas,” Ginny said sullenly as they walked back towards the common room. They figured they would go do some homework, while they skived off. Harry wanted to come up with another lead, but his mind was elsewhere. He couldn’t stop thinking about that moment on the fourth floor. They had been so close to each other he could hear her breathing.

Harry’s imagination drifted to that corridor, if the bell hadn’t rung… His lips would have pressed onto her. He would have run his hands through her long, incredible smelling hair. Maybe her hands would be around his neck.

He was so lost in his own mind that he didn’t even notice the voice of Professor McGonagall nearby. Ginny, however, was alert. She grabbed him by the front of his robes and pulled him to a dark corner, behind a suit of armor. They would be completely hidden from view, as long as no one looked directly at them. Ginny was pressed close to him. Their chests were touching, their arms wrapped around each other at uncomfortable angles.

They waited with bated breath, listening to two sets of footfalls. “I still think it was wrong, Albus,” Professor McGonagall was saying.

“These kids needed something to distracted them, today of all days,” Professor Dumbledore replied, “They need a break from all the problems outside of these walls. Why not spread the love a little?”

McGonagall’s dry voice responded, “Yes, but giving half of the Great Hall a love potion? Surely there are rules about that?”

“Actually, there are not. The closest would be the ban on Weasley Wizard Wheezes products, but because I made it here at Hogwarts, there is nothing against it.”

The Transfiguration teacher let out a long sigh, her voice terrifyingly close, “Still, Albus,” a trace of humor could be heard in her tone, “you’re almost as bad as Gilderoy was.”

Dumbledore let out his soft laugh as they passed the hiding spot. Their voices drifted to nothing as they rounded the corner. Harry looked down at Ginny. Her face showed his shock. “Dumbledore,” she whispered, “Dumbledore.” Then she started to laugh. Harry couldn’t resist joining in. Their headmaster had given students love potions to “spread the love”.

Ginny detangled herself from him and removed herself from their hiding spot. Harry followed her and, still chuckling, they walked towards the Gryffindor common room. About halfway back Ginny said, “Professor McGonagall was right, though. That was as bad as Lockhart.”

Harry had a vivid memory of a dwarf pinning him to the ground and reading an embarrassing poem. A poem that the girl he currently fancied wrote for him, or at least he assumed she wrote for him. He grinned at her, “Yeah, I remember that day well. A little red-haired girl sent me a singing dwarf.”

Ginny, who rarely blushed around him anymore, turned pink. She stopped walked, Harry stopped with her. She turned to face him. “What makes you think a red-head sent that to you? I don’t remember there being a hair color description in the closure.”

Harry gave her a smug grin. “I think I remember how it goes.” He cleared his throat dramatically, “His eyes are as green as a fresh pickled toad, His hair is as dark as a…” Harry was unable to finish the poem due to a pair of soft lips pressed hard onto his. Ginny had silenced him in the most effective way she could.

She pulled back, but remained close to him. “You want to finish that sentence?” she asked, her face showing amusement as she took in his face. He had to assume that his face might look like Ron’s during breakfast, sappy and lovesick.

Harry tried to say something, anything. He wanted to sound charming and witty, but his mouth just kept opening and closing without any sound. “You okay there, Potter?” Ginny asked her voice filled with suppressed laughter.

That brought him back. “Blackboard,” he finished sounding stupid to his own ears.

Now Ginny did laugh. “I kiss you and all you do is finish that awful poem I wrote when I was eleven?” Her voice held no bite. “Maybe I need to give it another…” This time, Harry stopped her from completing her sentence. He wrapped his arms around her, and placed his mouth against hers. Their lips moved in sync with each other, slowly and tenderly.

When Harry finally pulled back, one of his hands was in carded through her hair and the other was placed on her hip. They were both breathing heavily. “Go,” Ginny finished.

“I kiss you and all you do is finish your sentence,” Harry mocked in a husky tone. Ginny gave a low chuckle. She moved her arms from his lower back to his neck. They remained in their own little world, standing in the middle of the corridor, where anyone could find them, eyes locked looked in their own embrace.

The bell brought them back to Hogwarts. They reluctantly separated themselves, but they kept eye contact. “Want to go get dinner?” Ginny asked.

“Yeah, that sounds like a good idea,” Harry agreed his voice sounding like Luna’s. They started to walk back the way they had come, down towards the Great Hall. As they walked, Ginny slipped her hand casually into his, giving it a small squeeze. Harry felt his mouth spread into a grin as he returned the pressure. This is the best Valentine’s Day I’ve ever had, he thought happily, then a sudden thought struck him changing happiness to fear. I have to tell Ron I fancy his sister… I have to tell Ron I want to date his sister…Hopefully, there is some more of that love potion at dinner, at least he won’t want to hit me and my hypnotic eyes.
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