The trip to the Leaky Cauldron was quick and soon they were standing in the busy street that housed all the wizarding shops in London, Diagon alley. The Weasley's, Harry and Hermione went to Flourish and Blotts first to get what they needed, they'd received their Hogwarts letters not long after breakfast which was a relief for Mrs Weasley. She didn't think she could handle another trip here, they weren't supposed to be going today but since the wedding was in two days and people didn't have anything nice to wear she had agreed. But, since the letters arrived now they could buy dress robes and get all their school supplies so they wouldn't need to go here again for the summer.
Ginny looked around the shop with Harry trailing after her, though she was still mad at him for spying on her she couldn't pass up the opportunity to spend the day with him alone, she needed to get all her school supplies quickly so they could leave. She already had most of her school books since she'd be using Ron's books from last year, but she was talking Muggle studies and Arithmancy which he'd never taken, so she still had to get those. They went over to the front of the shop to pay; Ginny placed the books on the counter and was about to hand the lady working there the money for them when Harry placed a hand over hers to stop her.
“Here you go” he handed the woman some of his money instead and picked the books up off the counter.
“Thank you” the old witch replied, smiling politely. Harry started leaving the shop and now it was Ginny’s turn to trail after him.
“Harry you didn’t have to do that, just because were going out doesn’t mean I expect you to buy me things”. She said rather timidly.
“I know” was all he said in return, turning to smile at her and entwining his hand with hers. Ginny would have been flattered by these simple gestures were it not for the fact that she was feeling a bit suspicious that maybe he was doing this to get back into her good books.
“Thanks Harry” she whispered in his ear before joining all the others, Harry’s reply was simply him giving her hand a slight squeeze of affection.
“Well then, has everyone got their books?” Mrs Weasley asked when they'd gathered, they all nodded a confirmation, wanting to leave and do their own thing before they had to get back.
“Right, I guess now we’ll go to…”
“Actually Mum, we were thinking-” Fred began.
“-Why don’t we all split up and do our own thing?” George finished.
“Yeah!” Ginny added, a bit too keenly. Mrs Weasley stared at them all in turn, giving them the same look she’d given Ron earlier.
“I-I mean…whatever” Ginny shrugged her shoulders, trying to play it cool to make up for her recent blunder.
"Erm...Mrs Weasley?" Hermione addressed the mother of the group. "Why don't we go pick out dresses and dress robes while they all do their own thing, i'm sure they'll just get in the way anyway"
"Hey!" Fred and George said in unison, Hermione sent a glare their way and Ginny, catching onto what was happening, nudged both her brothers in the ribs, hard.
"Oww-oh yeah, she's right" George said in a monotone voice.
"We'd just get in the way" Fred agreed, finally understanding what Hermione was doing. Ginny could tell that her mother was suspicious, especially of her twin brothers, but it looked as though she was about to cave, she just needed one more push.
"Don't worry Mrs Weasley, I won't let them do anything reckless" Harry promised, obviously realising the same thing. Ginny crossed her fingers behind her back, waiting for the verdict.
"Oh, very well" she resigned, sighing heavily. Everyone silently cheered amongst themselves, trying not to make it seem like a big deal.
“I want no trouble and for everyone to meet inside the Leaky cauldron at four o’clock, you understand?” she added sternly.
“Yes Mrs Weasley” Harry said.
“Yes Mum” Fred, George and Ginny said altogether, the twins gave her a mock solute as she and Hermione left the shop and made their way over to ‘Madame Malkin’s robes for all occasions’ shop.
"Well then I guess we'll be on our way" Fred started, now that the two 'buzz kills' were gone.
"We do have a joke shop to run after all"George concluded. Ginny smiled inwardly, thinking of what Hermione would have said had she still been here. 'A joke shop sounds about right since it's a joke of a shop' she could just picture her making that witty remark. The twins left and now it was just the two of them.
"So what do you want to do first?" Harry asked her.
Meanwhile back at the Burrow...
Ron was on the third floor right outside Ginny's bedroom, he was messing around with ropes he'd gotten out of the shed earlier. He tied a piece to her door just like Harry had done to his, but Ron's was different, much different. Once he'd done that he picked up an empty box (again just as Harry did before) and placed it above the door, the one difference for this was that instead of feathers and glue, 'a childs play trick' he mused, it was full of wildfire whiz-bangs that he’d bought from Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.
The plan was simple but effective, he was going to hide round the corner of her room with his wand at the ready and as soon as he heard Ginny’s door opening he would point his wand towards the box above Ginny and Harry and do a stunning spell, which will set off the wildfire whiz-bangs startling them and giving them a few tiny burns and maybe some of their hair would end up on fire. The whiz-bangs would light the rope attached to the box on fire, continuing into Ginny’s room and then that would activate another one of the twin’s products which would turn their skin green for the rest of the day. And to top it all off Ron would use accio on ‘the secret’ product that had been used on him, causing it to fly towards them and suck Harry and Ginny up. Where it would take them? He had no idea as it changes destination each time it’s used. With everything set up he went round the corner and sat there, waiting for them to come home.
"I can't believe it's almost four!" Ginny punctuated glumly, slumping towards the Leaky Cauldron with Harry. After everyone had separated earlier they'd decided to go to Quality Quidditch Supplies to check to see if there was a new broomstick model out yet, (there wasn't). Then they went to Florean Fortescue's Ice Cream Parlour, they'd sat outside at one of the tables, talking and eating. Ginny's ice cream had been vanilla flavoured while Harry's was strawberry. After that Ginny took Harry to a shop he'd never been to before, it was called Rosa Lee Teabag, which given the name was a tea shop. They'd sat in there for a long time sipping tea and discussing the Quidditch try-outs that were happening not long after they return to Hogwarts, Harry was quite intuitive and knew that she wanted to try out for chaser. He'd encouraged her to turn up and said he was almost certain she'd make the team. And now here they were, making the trek back to the Leaky Cauldron to go home presumably.
"I know, it doesn't feel as though we've been here that long" Harry replied, checking his watch again to make sure his eyes hadn't played tricks on him before.
"Well...I'm glad we got to spend the day together, even if it wasn't for long" Ginny said contently, she hooked her arm through Harry's and rested her head on his shoulder.
"Me too". He gently kissed her forehead then opened the door to the famous wizarding pub.
"Ahh there you are!" Mrs Weasley squealed as soon as they entered, worry clearly evident on her face. She enveloped them both in a huge bear hug crushing them, Ginny managed to croak out.
"M-Mum w-what's...wrong?". Her mother released them and stepped back instantly, beaming.
"Oh, nothing dear. Why would you think something was wrong?" Both Ginny and Harry stared at her incredulously, from the reaction she'd given as they'd entered it was no wonder they'd thought something was wrong. For her part Mrs Weasley was giving both the children a perplexed look, not understanding what had given them the slightest notion that something was amiss. Wanting to push this awkwardness aside Ginny decided to change the subject.
"Anyway, we're all here aren't we? So what now, are we going back home straight away or can we relax here for a bit?" she knew she was pushing her luck asking this but she wasn't quite ready to go home yet.
"Of course sweetie, why don't you two hand me your shopping and I'll head home now and drop them off. I've already taken the others so I'll just meet you all at the Burrow, in half an hour" Mrs Weasley took their belongings and went over to the fireplace to floo to the Burrow. They went and joined the others who were seated at a cylindrical table in the corner.
"So? Did you two enjoy yourselves today?" Hermione teased once they'd sat down, the twins raised their eyebrows at them in question, waiting for their reply. Harry and Ginny both turned to each other for a second then turned back to look at the three in front on them.
"No" they said simultaneously, Satisfied with their answer they moved on.
“So sis, what did you think of our shop?” Ginny didn’t say anything; the truth was she hadn’t yet been to Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes.
“Come to think of it, I don’t think I saw you in there” Fred said rubbing his chin and squinting in concentration.
“Yeah…about that…I didn’t go” she’d tried thinking of a nicer way of saying it while speaking but, she couldn’t think of a better answer. The boys’ posture deflated slightly, making her feel bad.
“Don’t worry; I want to go it’s just, I thought we’d all be going including Dad. When I found out we were all splitting up I figured everyone had forgotten about our plans to go together” ‘Well, it wasn’t a complete lie. They did promise we’d all go together to make up for me and Harry not going a few days ago’ she thought to herself. Fred and George were about to reply when they heard a loud squelching noise. Hermione, knowing who had made the noise shifted closer to the table to get away from the old man behind her who definitely had an upset stomach. All the others who weren’t as insightful stared at Hermione.
“Wow Hermione, you’re a real man’s man” George began.
“Yeah, I didn’t think you had it in you” Fred added.
“…It happens a lot” Ginny proclaimed, recalling a moment that happened earlier in the day. She was twiddling her thumbs and wouldn’t meet Hermione’s eye.
“Wh- it wasn’t-”
“It’s okay Hermione we understand” Harry said soothingly, patting her hand for comfort and finding it funny that Ginny still thought it was her that had made the noise in her bedroom. “You don’t need to make excuses, we won’t judge”. She glared at him.
“But I…” she was cut off.
“Well, I guess we’d better head back” Fred said glancing at the cloak on the wall.
“Yeah it’s almost been half an hour” George finished, everyone stood up and left the table, leaving Hermione there to sulk. They went over to the fireplace, Ginny having to go back to the table to drag Hermione along and each stepped into the green flames shouting ‘The Burrow’.
As soon as they landed on the living room carpet they heard a loud thud coming from upstairs, followed by a few softer thuds that weren’t stopping. The twins, suddenly very alert, got their wands out and headed for the stairs to check it out. Knowing there couldn’t be any real danger with their Mum in the house, they let the others follow. They made it onto the first floor but continued going up, not bothering to see if anything was going on, on this floor.
The second floor was the same, since they didn’t hear any noise they decided to keep going, except for Harry and Ginny; they’d decided to check it out since there was a door slightly ajar.
Climbing up, the others finally made it to the third floor where all the noise was coming from, slowly and silently they began making their way through the hallway, inching closer to the disturbance. They turned the corner and immediately sighed in relief at what they saw; Ron was standing outside Ginny’s door jumping up and down, swinging his arms about and humming to himself. Finding this side of Ron a little alarming, Fred and George approached their little brother cautiously.
“Hey Ickle Ronniekins, what’re we celebrating?” George teased, not getting a reply Fred stepped in.
“Well dear brother, it looks like he’s finally lost it” they hung their heads in mock sadness, but, still no reaction from Ron. Just then Harry and Ginny came round the corner, a little put out at the sight before them. They looked at Hermione who shrugged, and then Harry went over to the twins to see if they knew what was happening while the girls stayed back.
“What’s he so happy about?” Harry asked them, stopping at the side of them.
“We have no idea, do we Fred?”
“Nope George, not a clue” Getting no help from the twins whatsoever Harry made his way towards his best friend, who was still jumping up and down cheering, completely oblivious of the people behind him.
“Hey Ron” he said slowly, afraid of startling him, “What’s got you in a good mood?”
“I just got payback on Harry and Ginny” he giggled, rather femininely, “And now their tra…” he cut off abruptly, recognizing that voice. Ron turned around slowly and saw Hermione, Fred, George, and worst of all Harry and Ginny.
“Bu-But I…” he began gesticulating between them and the door.
“Are those our wildfire whiz-bangs?” asked Fred, suddenly noticing burnt plastic and rope on the floor, as well as the scorch marks on the walls.
“Which means you used a stunning spell to set them off” George concluded, realising what Ron was trying to do. “Didn’t you see who was in the doorway while you did it?”
“Huh? No, I didn’t want to, erm… get caught so I just pointed my wand round the corner and fired blindly” Ron was still a little slow with everything happening around him, he was dumbfounded that the two people he’d intended to trap were standing right in front of him.
“Wow that was very brave of you Ronald” Hermione spewed out rather raspy, not amused by his pitiful antics. Despite how stupid he felt right now, he still got annoyed with her, but then a question sprang to mind replacing his anger.
“Well then, if I haven’t trapped Harry or Ginny, who did I trap?” Ron asked nonplussed, everyone looked around, doing a head count to see who was missing. Suddenly they all paled and gave Ron a genuinely sympathetic look, even Hermione. He stood there confused until it finally clicked and he balked. Nobody said anything for a few minutes and then Harry decided to voice what they were all afraid of saying.
“You…you pulled a prank on Mrs Weasley”.