Disclaimer: Anything you recognise isn't mine.
A/N: Happy (belated) birthday, scubarang. I'm very sorry I was so late getting this written for you, but I hope you enjoy it, and I hope you had a great birthday. ^_^
Of Vanity and First Kisses
There were some things that could not be tolerated. Hermione Granger getting a 'first kiss' before you was one of them.
You see, Ginny had always taken comfort in the fact that even if all her other female friends got their first kisses before she did, Hermione, at least, would not. After all, Hermione was neither pretty nor approachable, not to mention had an unhealthy obsession with books and studying. In short, she was every boy's nightmare, and so Ginny felt perfectly safe (and justified) in thinking that the only action Hermione's lips were going to get was with a mirror.
It was therefore no surprise that when Hermione came up to Ginny and said in a hushed whisper that Victor Krum, the famous Bulgarian Quidditch star, had snogged her in the library, the redhead in question showed neither delight nor any sort of friendly expression at all. She just stared at the bushy-haired girl before her like the world had suddenly turned upside down, for, to Ginny's mind, the world indeed had. It was Hermione who was supposed to be the eternal spinster, Hermione whose virginal lips were to remain untouched before any other girl's at Hogwarts, and yet it was Ginny who remained the only Gryffindor girl in the third and fourth year to have not received her first kiss. Heck, even Millicent Bullstrode had been kissed, if only for a dare, and every one knew she was the female version of a troll.
There was something seriously wrong here. Obviously the gods had decided to hate her and doom her to a life of unhappiness and unkissed-dom. Why else would she be forced to suffer such an embarrassing fate? It was intolerable, unfathomable and just plain unfair. Ginny could not accept it, and ranking herself with the unlucky Odysseus, she decided that she would fight against those cruel gods if she had to, whatever the cost. She would get her kiss, and she would make sure she got more than the little peck the other girls were boasting of. Her kiss would put theirs all to shame, they'd see.
But first she needed to find a boy that was actually willing to kiss her.
Ginny leaned her chin on her hand and let out a small, dispirited sigh. Now that could pose a problem. She did not consider herself ugly, but then neither was she pretty in the conventional or even the exotic way. Her hair was a startling shade of red, her skin so pale it put even a porcelain doll to shame, and while this would not have been so bad, the healthy sprinkle of freckles that smothered her arms and face, particularly her nose, rather ruined the effect. Her eyes were an ordinary brown and had a tendency towards the ridiculous, being so large that her face took on a kitten-ish quality that was more disconcerting than attractive. Her nose might have saved her, having escaped the Weasley trend of being long, and it was true that her lips were kissable enough, but one didn't really notice these things, for one was often too distracted by her wide, earnest gaze and brilliant red hair. She also happened to be leaning towards the short side and was as thin as a waif, which only served to seal the impression that she was a small, scraggly looking thing that was all eyes and hair with little else to recommend for herself.
Still, Ginny felt that there was no reason why she should not have been kissed yet. After all, Hermione had hair that was so bushy it looked like a lion's mane, and her friend had beaver teeth, or at least she used to, and everything about her was plain and unremarkable. If Hermione could get a kiss from an international Quidditch star, then there was no reason why Ginny couldn't get one from someone just as important.
Perhaps it was mean of Ginny to think these thoughts about her friend, but the redhead was intensely jealous of Hermione (and all those other girls for that matter) for getting a kiss before her, and so she had little thought to spare for their feelings or other such niceties. She refused to be the only one in her circle who had not been kissed, and she swore to herself right then and there that tonight when the Gryffindor girls would play their weekly ritual of Truth or Dare, she would actually be able to answer the 'who was your first kiss' question with a name instead of having to confess yet again that she had not been kissed.
Which brought her back to the problem of finding a boy to kiss her.
Being more than a little shallow, it had not occurred to Ginny that good looks wasn't the only factor that could decide whether one was to be kissed or not. Even if it had, it was doubtful she would have realised that her personality was just as nightmarish to boys as she had thought Hermione's had been, as Ginny was also rather conceited. But the fact remained that Ginny's over-romantic nature, untameable temper and spirited ways was not something many boys wanted to get mixed up in, and it had never helped that she had a horde of protective brothers waiting to ward off those brave enough to try.
That being said, Ginny was not so foolish as to not realise that if she really wanted a first kiss then she would probably have to be the one to initiate it. She was naturally daunted by the thought of doing such a thing, but she had not been placed in Gryffindor for nothing. She was a girl on a mission, and a girl on a mission will tell you that there is nothing so important as achieving one's goal, even if it means facing embarrassing consequences later. She was going to get that kiss, and she was going to get it from someone who would put even Victor Krum to shame in terms of celebrity status.
And that was how Ginny Weasley came to be following Harry Potter around the castle like an undercover agent in a bad spy movie. The boy in question was quite aware of his feminine shadow, but as Ginny had spent most of the previous two years trailing behind him in silent adoration, it didn't really strike him as anything out of the ordinary that she should do so now. Had he known her intentions, he would have been far less placid about it, for he was currently mooning after Cho Chang. But he didn't know and so, happy in his ignorance, he continued to go about his day as normal, completely oblivious to the fact that the redhead was, in fact, waiting for the perfect opportunity to corner him and kiss him.
That perfect moment presented itself to Ginny when Harry finally disengaged himself from his friends and headed back towards the dungeons to collect his bag, which he had foolishly left behind in the Potions classroom. She waited in one of the more shadowy alcoves further down the hallway, breathless with excitement and nerves.
Her plan was a simple one. As soon as he got close enough to where she was hiding, she would reach out and snog him before he even had a chance to say no. Hopefully he would reciprocate the kiss so that she could have more to boast about to her friends; if not, at least she would have got her kiss and could say that she had shared it with Harry Potter. Her friends didn't need to know the details, after all…
Ginny heard the Potions door swing open again, followed by the sound of a boy's firm tread coming closer towards her. Her heart fluttered erratically in her chest so that her whole body seemed to throb with the rapid pumping of her blood, and her breathing quickened with anticipation. This was it. She was finally going to get her kiss. No longer would her lips be ignorant of the feel of another's, and-
Merlin's magical bloomers! Harry was already walking past her.
Ginny reached out without thinking and grabbed at his robe, pulling him roughly towards her. He let out a yelp of surprise, but that was quickly stifled as her lips crashed clumsily into his. He froze, obviously taken aback by his assailant's method of attack, and she quickly took advantage of his passiveness and clasped his face in both her hands, deepening the kiss. It was true that she did not really know what she was doing, but she must have done something right, for she felt Harry slowly relax against her and respond to the kiss, his lips moving against hers with a sort of curious cautiousness, as if he was not sure whether he wanted to kiss her or not but was too intrigued to push her away.
There was something searching about the way he kissed her, something that made her feel like she was an inexplicable force he was hoping to make sense of. It soon became apparent to her that he was far more experienced at this than she was as he took control of the kiss and guided her into expressing her passion more skilfully.
His hands, which had instinctively grasped at her shoulders when she had deepened the kiss, now moved slowly down her arms, caressing her waist as he continued his path to her hips. He pulled her closer to him, and she let out a small gasp, not sure how to deal with all the confusing feelings that came with finding herself pressed up against his firm, lean body. The scent of a cool, masculine cologne flooded her senses, and she wondered dizzily why it should seem so unfamiliar to her when she had often found herself in close proximity to Harry. His hair was so much softer too, and his face seemed somehow more structured and defined under her hands than Harry's had ever looked.
Now that she thought about it, shouldn't he be wearing glasses?
Ginny broke away from the kiss and stared up into the boy's shadowed face, paralysed with shock. This was not Harry, and she wondered how she had ever been stupid enough to not realise this fact sooner, for this boy was at least another three inches taller than her brother's bespectacled friend, and he definitely was not wearing glasses or even had messy hair, judging by his silhouette.
She stepped back in panic, breaking the hold he had on her hips. He let out a soft laugh, completely unruffled by her sudden eagerness to get away from him.
"So now you're going to go shy on me, are you?" asked the boy, amused.
"Malfoy?" exclaimed Ginny in horror, easily recognising his aristocratic drawl.
"Who did you think it was?" demanded Draco, justifiably affronted.
"I thought-but you-I mean I saw Harry go in, so-"
Ginny suddenly found her arm being held in a vice-like grip and could only let out a small squeak of protest as she was steered out of the shadows and into the dim light of the dungeon hallway. Draco stared searchingly into her face, meeting her wide, enquiring eyes, and then he let out a loud groan that told all too well of how pleased he was to discover her actual identity.
"You," said Draco with loathing. "Of course it had to be you."
"Well you don't have to say it like that," muttered Ginny.
"I'm sorry, did you expect me to be delighted by the fact that I was just attacked and snogged by a Weasley?"
"I didn't know it was you," retorted Ginny, flushing crimson.
"That's right. You were hoping to jump Potter."
Her cheeks burned all the brighter in her embarrassment, but her eyes flashed with a dangerous glint that made his smirk freeze in place. Suddenly the absurd kitten looked a lot fiercer.
"What about you!" spat Ginny, taking a step towards him. "You weren't exactly trying to push me away either. If anything, you were snogging me much more than I was snogging you, and you touched me."
Draco opened and closed his mouth wordlessly. Then a smirk flittered across his lips.
"Well," said the blond with a careless shrug, "when the girl is willing…"
Ginny's jaw dropped in offended disbelief, and then she took another step forward and let her hand fly with all the strength she could muster.
"What did you do that for?" growled Draco, rubbing his stinging cheek.
"Because you're a git," said Ginny bluntly.
"At least I'm not desperate."
"I am not desperate!"
"Yes you are."
"No I'm not."
"Yes you are."
"NO I'M NOT!"
"Then why were you hiding in the dungeon hallway, hoping to catch Potter unawares so that you could kiss him?"
"I…well, I, er…"
Draco smirked. "You see? Desperate."
Ginny folded her arms crossly. "Oh, just go away, Malfoy. You've ruined everything, and even if the girls do ask me now, I'll never be able to tell them that you were the one who I shared my first kiss with. Who would want to boast about kissing you?"
"Probably more people than those who would want to boast about kissing you," retorted Draco contemptuously, and then his brow creased into a frown. "Wait a minute, that was your first kiss?"
"What's it to you?" snapped Ginny.
"I don't know," responded Draco truthfully.
Ginny rolled her eyes and turned away from the blond, annoyed with herself for having not first checked to see if it had indeed been Harry coming down the hallway. None of this would have happened if she had only checked, and she most certainly would not now be trying her best (and failing miserably) to forget the intoxicating kiss she had shared with the most hated of Slytherins, Draco Malfoy. Damn him for being such a good kisser.
Her eyes drifted back to the pale boy next to her, and she was annoyed to find that he was still staring at her.
"What?" growled Ginny, clutching her arms more defensively to herself.
She did not like the way he was looking at her.
"No wonder you've never been kissed if that's how you talk to boys," commented Draco with an inelegant snort.
Ginny's cheeks blossomed with pink. "What do you know?"
"Probably a lot more than you."
Ginny knew this was true, and so she simply lifted her chin haughtily and made to sweep away from him. It would have been a very dramatic exit and would have got her point across beautifully that she didn't care about his stupid conversations, only Draco was faster than her and once again clutched at her arm.
"Not so fast, Weasley."
"Let me go!" cried the redhead, trying to wrench her arm free of his grasp.
But Draco only pulled her closer so that she was trapped in his arms-arms that proved to be as unyielding as a steel cage. She stared up at him, breathing heavily, and then her heart gave a funny stutter in her chest as she realised just how close they were. The effect of his proximity was dramatically different now that they were away from the shadows, for now she could actually see the mercurial grey of his eyes and the slight curve of his lips as he smirked. It was also a shock to realise just how good-looking he actually was.
"What are you doing?" asked Ginny, and she was annoyed to find her voice come out in a husky whisper and not at all like the brassy accusation she had been going for.
"I don't know," repeated Draco, half-laughing.
"Perhaps you should let me go then."
"I don't think I will do that," said the blond with a wicked smile. "I have a much better idea."
And that was how Harry Potter found Draco Malfoy and Ginny Weasley snogging in the middle of the hallway, the redhead having decided it was far more interesting to see what her second kiss with Draco Malfoy would be like than to argue with him. The news spread like wildfire, and Ginny soon discovered that kissing Draco Malfoy was indeed something to boast about, though it was true she no longer really cared about her silly competition with the girls anymore.
You see, there were some things that could not be tolerated, but kissing Draco Malfoy definitely was not one of them.