“Do I really look okay in this?” Ginny asked Hermione. She was still unsure whether the pastel lilac dress she was wearing was the perfect outfit. “Ginny, relax, you look beautiful,” Hermione sighed in reply as she sat at the dressing table and pulled out her wand from the drawer to the right. “I suppose… do you think Harry will approve?”
“I think he will be thanking his lucky stars that he’s going with such an amazing girl.”
“He will be very proud to be your brother, and, if not, let me take care of the overprotective streak, if it decides to make an uninvited appearance,” Hermione finished, casting a charm on her hair to make it as sleek, shiny and as manageable as possible.
“Well, he sure will be looking forward to seeing you when you turn up in that,” Ginny said examining Hermione’s outfit as she stood up. She was wearing a cream dress that came up to just below her knees; the material it was made from shimmered in the light. “Do you think it’s too much?” she asked, straightening the hem.
“Don’t be stupid,” Ginny answered her bluntly. Hermione blushed as she slipped on her eye mask. After applying a little glitter around the rim of the mask, they left the dormitory, smiling all the way.
Harry and Ron were stood in front of the single full-length mirror in their dorm. Harry had took it upon himself to buy them both Muggle suits for this year’s ball, he couldn’t face seeing Ron in those frightful dress robes again. He was wearing a clean cut black suit with a white shirt, whereas Ron was dressed in a sharp dark blue one, with a white shirt and what Harry described as a ‘50’s’ black tie; Ron however just saw it as ‘a thin one’. “Are you sure people won’t laugh?” Ron asked Harry, worried of their classmates’ reactions to their sudden change in style. “Put it this way Ron… You look ten times better than you did at the 4th year ball,” Harry replied as he pulled on his black eye mask.
“Ha-ha, very funny,” Ron said sarcastically, hitting Harry’s arm playfully as he slipped on his mask and added a dark blue trilby. He smiled at his reflection in the mirror and followed Harry out of the room.
“Everyone seems to be really impressed with the decoration and especially the theme Hermione,” Ginny said her as they stood at one of the tables pouring themselves glasses of punch. “I think they’d come over and compliment you themselves but you’re practically unrecognisable!”
“Hey Ginny, you enjoying yourself?”
“Yeah thanks Angelina, you?”
“Yes thanks, you’re brother’s disappeared somewhere, probably pulling another one of his famous pranks,” she sighed, “Oh, sorry, I didn’t see you there,” she continued, looking in Hermione’s direction, “Ginny, aren’t you going to introduce us…?”
“Angelina, it’s Hermione,” Ginny said smirking slightly.
“Hermione?!” Angelina exclaimed in certain disbelief as she stared at her.
“Yes, that would be me,” Hermione replied grinning.
“Wow!” she said taking another sip of her drink, “you look amazing…”
“Thank you,” Hermione said sweetly, blushing slightly.
“Well, anyway, I’d better get off and find Fred; I’ll catch up with you girls later!” Angelina finished leaving Ginny smiling from ear to ear and Hermione practically stunned.
“That answer your question?” Ginny asked.
“Mmmhmm,” Hermione mumbled quietly, taking a gulp of her punch.
“Where’s your date anyway?... Seamus seems to be taking his time…”
“I’m not with Seamus. He decided to go alone. I think he’s hoping to catch Cho’s eye,” Hermione explained, “oh, hey look! There’s Harry!” she said nudging Ginny.
The girls walked over to him and as soon as he laid eyes on Ginny his jaw dropped. “Hey Harry...” she greeted him nervously.
Closing his mouth, he managed to utter a sentence, “Ginny, you, err, look, erm… wow!”
“Thanks,” she replied shyly, linking his arm. Hermione smiled proudly across at Harry.
“Who’s this other beautiful young lady then?” he asked curiously.
“It’s me… Hermione,” she said.
“Oh. My. God. That’s Hermione?” he said pointing at her and looking to
Ginny for confirmation. Ginny nodded. “You look, well, not like you,” Harry struggled to think of the words.
“I’ve had that said…” Hermione added grinning.
“Where’s Ron?” Ginny asked.
“He decided to come along later… I think. That’s if he doesn’t change his mind and stay in the dorms all night,” Harry answered. Hermione’s face fell, and her heart sank. No Ron. No Dance.
“I’ll catch up with you guys later. I have a few things to take care of...” Hermione managed to say in a disappointed tone of voice, forcing a smile.
“Okay... have fun...” Ginny replied.
“What’s going on with Ron? You saw how devastated she was when you said that,” Ginny asked as Hermione had trailed off.
“He’s there…” Harry answered, pointing to a boy stood in the opposite corner of the hall.
“Oh my god…” Ginny gasped. She didn’t even recognise her own brother.
“It seems Ronald has a few tricks up his sleeve...” Harry began, Ginny looked at him with a puzzled look on her face, “he’s planning to get Hermione to fall for him tonight... without telling her it’s him,” Harry explained, he waited for a reaction from Ginny.
She smiled widely, “I think I underestimated my big brother... big time!”
The night soon got underway, the drinks poured, lights cascaded across the walls and the music was ongoing. Harry and Ginny, amongst many others, were dancing out on the dance floor. Hermione was hovering on the outskirts, every so often she would look to the double doors just to catch a glimpse of Ron arriving.
Ron was sat on a chair across the room, and had yet to be recognised by anyone. He was struggling to find Hermione in all the hustle and bustle of the ball and so far his plans to make her fall for him in disguise, weren’t working. He’d walked around the room several times, watching Harry and Ginny dancing and passing groups of people he didn’t know any of. “What’s the point?” he muttered to himself. ‘She isn’t here; I can’t believe I thought I stood a chance.” He’d by this point given up completely and was making his way towards the exit.
“Harry! Ginny! I think I’m gonna head back to dorms!” Hermione shouted over the music to her friends.
“Ok, are you sure?” Ginny said walking closer to her.
“Yeah, I’m kind of tired…”
“No. You stay…” Hermione said glancing across at a smiling Harry.
“You’re absolutely sure?”
“Yes!” Hermione exclaimed, “I’ll be fine,” she hugged Ginny, and looked back at Harry, turning back to face Ginny she whispered, “go get him,” winking at her best friend she made her way towards the door.
Hermione walked slowly towards the door, still watching Harry and Ginny thoroughly enjoying each other’s company. She must have spaced out for second… “Ow!” Hermione suddenly bumped into someone. Turning her head to see who it was she realised the postion of the person’s hands… at her waist.
“Oh, I’m sorry.” she apologized, “I wasn’t” she looked around at the face of the person and lost her train of thought.
“Erm…” the boy uttered, “I’m sorry, it was me, not looking where I was going.” Hermione smiled and giggled slightly as her eyes inverted and had now found a connection with the deepest blue eyes she’d ever seen.
Ron, now had his arms wrapped around the waist of the most beautiful girl he’d ever come across. He felt himself literally melting inside as he gazed into the most intricate chocolate brown eyes. Stopping himself swiftly, he thought it would be proper to remove his arms, changing their current position.
“Hi,” was the only word Hermione could think of to say.
“Hi,” the boy replied. “Were you leaving?”
“Yes actually I was,” Hermione replied.
“Sure..” she answered smiling as she exited out of the doors, closely followed by the mystery boy, who, in her opinion, was in fact, very handsome.
“Hey…” Ginny stopped and tapped Harry repeatedly to get him to pay attention.
“What?” Harry looked at Ginny for an explanation. Ginny pointed out two people exiting the ball. “Looks like Ron’s idea is going to plan,” Harry smiled. Ginny grinned as they carried on dancing.
“Name?” Ron asked.
“Irrelevant… Enjoying yourself?”
“No, not really…” Ron replied, breaking the chain of one word answers.
“Why?” the girl asked curiously.
“It’s not exactly going to plan…”
“Oh. What do you mean?”
“My sole aim tonight was to win over the girl of my dreams…” the girl looked at him quizzically, “Not that you’re not… it’s just…”
“It’s okay… I get it...” the girl said understandingly. They sat down on a nearby stone bench. “You know when people say, I know how you feel… but they actually have no idea… I actually do know how you feel…” the girl finished.
“Wow… you are slowly becoming one of the most complicated girls I have ever encountered. Other than my best friend…” Ron said in disbelief.
“Yeah, she was the girl I was supposed to be meeting tonight, I was promised a dance, only, she didn’t show up… I was a fool for even thinking she would…”
“It can’t be that bad, she must have an explanation….”
“She has an explanation for everything,” Ron added, chuckling to himself, “the thing that makes it a hell of a lot worse is that she, I, I was going to…”
“Tell her that you wanted to be more than her best friend…” the girl finished off his sentence; he suddenly got rather confused, “I told you I knew how you feel…” Ron nodded and sighed.
“I guess that makes us both fools in love then?...”
“Well,” Ron began to speak as the music seeped out through the open castle doors, “what’s to say, two, downright unlucky, fools in love, can’t still enjoy themselves…” the girl grinned, placing out his hand he requested, “…care to dance?”
Reaching out her hand nervously she set it in his. The immediate touch of his skin made her heart jump. Folding his fingers around her’s they stood up from their position on the bench. They were stood under one of the shelters that lay either side of the main courtyard. The moonlight floated through the gaps in the stone archways and pillars. She hadn’t felt more comfortable in anyone else’s arms, other than perhaps Ron’s; but she hadn’t exactly got close enough to him to tell so, for now, mystery boy seemed most natural.
Anxiously Ron slipped one of him hands around her waist and rested it on the small of her back. In the other, he took her hand, interlacing his fingers in her’s, he held their hands close to his chest as they started to sway. Her other hand had found it’s way to Ron’s upper arm and remained there. The music was perfect for the atmosphere, not slow and absolutely cheesy, it was more romantic and even the slightest bit tender.
“What are you thinking about?” Hermione asked, glancing up at him, trying to see the person behind the mask. She knew it was possible; she just had to get to know him a bit better first. “I don’t know… you, I suppose,” the stranger replied.
“How come you know all the right things to say?”
“I have no idea, dumb luck I guess; either that or….”
“It must be because you make me feel at ease, I can be myself I suppose…”
“See, there you go again,” Hermione laughed.
“I can’t help it that you’re a hopeless romantic.”
“Already figured me out I see…”
“Oh yes…” he replied jokingly, making Hermione smile. She yawned to herself and, smiling at the ironic sense of musical timing, she rested her head on the top of his chest and sighed.
“I feel like I know you...” Ron said as he breathed slightly deeper than normal. “Your eyes, they’re, well, unforgettable.” He could barely she the blush creeping up the girl’s cheeks. “What if I told you, that you reminded me of someone...”
“It depends who that someone is…”
“Oh, don’t worry, it’s a good thing. She. She was the girl that never showed up.”
“How is that good then..?”
“Because…oh god, I can’t believe I’m saying this…”
“Go on..” the mystery girl prompted, lifting her head up from his chest.
“Because she… I, I love her..” he finished, his cheeks filling a slight magenta colour.
“She’s a very lucky girl then…” the girl said, “even if she doesn’t know it yet…”
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