When a certain ancient beat penetrates the hearts and bodies of two long-time rivals, it always spurs the growth of something much more lethal than their hatred.
Categories: Completed Short Stories Characters:
Sep 12, 2006 Updated:
Sep 12, 2006
1. Dance by Lirie Halliwell
You Dance With Me
Dedicated to dragonsangel68, who is apparently far cooler than I ever imagined and actually did ballroom dancing! ZOMG!
Thanks to Jess and Jen for hearty betaing, and the lovely Cabal Embellished (another Jennifer) and Sharlene for fixing up the kinks. You people rock! ^_^
by Lirie Halliwell
“That is a very scrumptious dress, Ginevra. Is there any chance I could talk you out of it?”
The familiar purr just beside her ear came only a moment before Draco Malfoy stepped around her, presenting himself, in all his pristine glory, to the eyes of Ginevra Weasley – the organizer of this flashy event.
“Sod off, Rat-Face,” Ginny replied swiftly, the sweet smile not leaving her subtly made up features for a moment.
“Tsk, tsk… What a horrible tongue you have in that lovely mouth of yours. Someone should rip it out.” Draco shook his head in apparent disappointment, and took a sip from his champagne glass. “I volunteer.”
“You might want to take an additional fifteen steps away from me, Ferret-Boy. I’m wearing seven inch stilettos that will pierce through that awfully expensive Italian leather on your shoes with the slightest bit of pressure.”
It was amazing, actually, how pleasant and friendly Ginny could sculpt her expression, while spewing terrible threats at the – allegedly – rehabilitated Slytherin. She wondered whether she should be doing it at this particular event, one she had organized herself and her father had dedicated to him. However, it wasn’t as if he actually deserved such a grand ball in the first place. All he did was betray his friends and father in favor of the stronger team. It wasn’t valiant of him, wasn’t brave or right, wasn’t even nice; it was simply oh so Slytherin.
And people ate it right up!
Though Harry was adored and worshipped by millions after Voldemort’s defeat, he had made it his business to stay as far away from the overeager cameras and blinding flashes as he could. He hated the buzz, the exaggerations, and the balls; hated being looked upon as a hero, and watched, and quoted, and analyzed. He simply hated the spotlight.
The press couldn’t work with such a 'Hero'.
So in came Draco. He bore the undeniable Malfoy charm, poise and power, and was a complete megalomaniac. The cameras also wept for his smile – as did countless witches around the world who were dimwitted enough to fall for his “reformed” Death Eater routine – and he was eloquent enough with his actions and words, to be constantly written and talked about.
But he was still a Malfoy, and the Ministry was still suspicious. They deemed him unpredictable, so Ginny – at the time, one of the most brilliant Public Relations agents in the Ministry – was asked, by her father, to undertake the gruesome job of being Draco Malfoy's Public Relations Manager or as she had put it: “Baby-sit the idiot, and make sure he doesn’t flop his face onto the table at one of the Ministry balls, just out of sheer curiosity to see how the press would word it in the next morning’s edition.” She couldn’t help but scoff at the thought, but if her father could overlook the fact that the public’s new hero was a stinking Malfoy, she guessed she could be forced to do the same.
“Ginevra, I am appalled,” Draco responded, his voice sounding very much not appalled and even – if it were possible – somewhat gleeful. “To talk in such a way to your very favorite client, and the guest of honor at this ball. A ball which, may I remind you, was planned by you, and in which you put your heart and soul into? I'm absolutely aghast!”
Ginny watched him smirk into his champagne, and wondered if anyone would even notice his sudden absence. Deciding that people just might she begrudgingly abandoned the idea. It was probably for the best, considering the the only way she could think of to make him disappear at that time involved a shovel and something that suspiciously resembled a cheese grinder.
“Don’t for a minute entertain the thought that I might be investing so much into this for your sake, Malfoy,” Ginny drawled at him in the most indifferent tone she could muster. “I am paid heftily just to stand your presence.”
“I know, Ginevra dear,” he assured her, his voice seemingly slipping down a notch in its playfulness. “I am the one who adds all those zeroes to your paycheck, and that loopy thing at the end of it that people call a signature.”
“Oh, so it was you? And I was wondering who dared to scribble all over my bill,” Ginny retorted, her eyes slipping away from him in what she hoped was complete and blunt boredom. “Any more innuendos, or can I go and try to suppress the memory of the past few moments in your presence far below my subconscious?”
Draco paused with the last swallow of his champagne, staring at her for a long minute in silence. His features hadn’t exactly turned serious, but there was definitely something wrong.
“I want to dance,” he said finally. He placed his and Ginny’s long-stem glasses onto the nearest passing tray, and took a hold of her hand, pulling her onto the dance floor.
Ginny’s surprise and slight bewilderment settled in the form of a subtle frown when she finally seized control over her own body and halted halfway through the crowd, pulling her hand away. “And what on earth am I to do with that?”
“Dance, Ginevra. You dance with me,” Draco replied, trying to conceal the traces of something resembling annoyance in his voice.
Ginny snorted in an unladylike fashion. “That is what you think,” she said, rolling her eyes and turning around.
However, Draco wasn’t exactly the kind of man to take such a thing placidly, and in less than a minute Ginny found herself on the wooden dance floor, pressed dangerously close to the one man she’d tried to get away from, spinning and moving to the rhythm of some unknown tune. She suddenly became aware of how long his fingers were, and how firm his hand was at the small of her back and around her own shaky palm. She also became aware that he was somewhat taller than her, and that her face would fit snugly into the curve of his shoulder just where his neck ascended. Having no desire whatsoever to drown in that subtle scent of his menthol aftershave, she tried glaring up at his face, only to be mentally thwarted by the pair of grey eyes.
Something was horribly wrong with that moment.
Perhaps it was the fact that she enjoyed it.
Trying to shake out of her stupor, Ginny made an attempt to retrieve her hand out of his grip, and push him away, but this only prompted him to tighten his hold on her, bringing her even more impossibly close to him.
“If you take a single step away, I will proclaim my undying devotion to your freckles right here and now, Ginevra,” he said quietly, his gaze traveling somewhere across the room just above her head.
He allowed the music to sweep them around the floor with grace and poise, perfected by years of private tutoring. She didn't even recognize how readily her body yielded to his fluent movements.
Ginny’s eyes narrowed subtly as she caught onto his threat.
“Yes, Ginevra, I would dare, as a matter of fact. In front of all these nice, important people.” A glimpse of his almost forgotten sinister smirk spread into a full grin across his features at the sight of her defiant instincts trying to work out a way out of it. He wasn’t going to give her such satisfaction. “Oh, is that the press? Let’s go over there, shall we?”
Ginny’s eyes, filled with dread and apprehension, flitted over to the group of prominent journalists standing by the buffet, not far from where the two separate bodies swayed as one lucid entity.
“Fine, fine! I won’t try to get away, all right? Just-- just let’s not go over there, okay?”
“I don’t know.” Draco appeared to be contemplating such a thing unenthusiastically, glancing at the reporters with a sly light in his gaze. “I really wanted to talk to that Creevey bloke. People say he’s an outstanding photographer. I'd really like an imprint of this magical moment, wouldn’t you?”
Ginny couldn’t manage to stifle the low growl of irritation that escaped her at his words, and deciding he had held the upper hand for too long, spun right out of his reach, her burgundy skirt billowing about her just as the music slipped into something more vivid. A smirk graced her lips at the sight of his initial disorientation, and she found herself uncurling her shoulders defiantly.
She clapped twice as the beat urged for it and arched her arms back gracefully, lifting her chin with an awfully haughty air. The music sprung into series of dangerously exhilarating notes coming from skillfully raving fingers upon the strings of some well-tuned guitar. Ginny’s body responded almost instinctively, holding and moving itself with such elegance that Draco seemed to almost lose himself in the process of watching.
However, he caught himself just in time, and when Ginny had moved teasingly to his side, fully expecting him to remain in his paralyzed state as a mere spectator, he surprised her by grasping ahold of her hands, sending her spinning with the fierceness and swiftness of a bull fighter. Her whole body tightened intensely, straightening into a proud wick of some savagely burning candle, spinning out of this world and into something entirely unpredictable. When the spinning ceased, it took only a slight pull of his fingers for her to land squarely at his chest, allowing him to lock her in with his arms. Her small figure was panting lightly, and staring up at him and his lips.
He wasn’t yet done. When the music lost some of its violence, and shifted into something more melodious, Ginny found her hips guided to the gentler beat by a pair of reverent hands, with his own moving hips pressed intimately to hers. The music wept onwards about some tragic love, but all she was aware of was the fact that she would never perceive menthol with the same indifference ever again.
“I am a very patient man, Ginevra,” he suddenly whispered with such quiet hoarseness that Ginny instantly deemed themselves alone, and in a murky bedroom. The fact that they were still surrounded by hundreds of people was completely forgotten for the moment. “But if you make me wait another day…”
The unspoken threat was left hanging in that whispered silence between the two, with no one but themselves being aware of it. Ginny tried to think of a reply, something suiting, preferably cutting and sharp, or even witty. When not even a single coherent word came to mind, she cursed him - and herself - and simply nodded.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and settings are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.