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Harry Potter and the Whore of Slytherin Chapter 6

Ginny frowned as Parkinson levitated Harry's trunk up the stairs. She suspected she knew what the Slytherin was going to say, and she wanted to tell her to go to hell.

The problem was, at this point she thought she might let Malfoy sleep with Harry if it would help him. The look in his eyes... no, the absence of anything in his eyes was what really scared her. He hadn't even reacted when his uncle hit him, and she knew damned well that he could have dodged the blow, if he'd tried.

If he'd cared.

In her heart, she'd hoped it wasn't this bad, that everyone was overreacting, but now... now she knew that if anything it was worse than Parkinson had thought.

She didn't know what to do. She'd never seen anyone look like that before. She couldn't even tell him it would be all right, because it wouldn't. Sirius was dead, and there was nothing she could say that would change that. Nothing she could do to bring him back, or take away Harry's pain.

But Parkinson could, or at least thought she could, and for an instant she hated the other girl more than she had ever hated anyone, more than she hated Lucius Malfoy, more than she hated Tom Riddle. For an instant, she wanted to hex the girl in the back, hurt her so that she couldn't take Harry away from her, so that she couldn't help him when Ginny was powerless to do so.

And then her face flushed with shame. How could she think something like that? It didn't matter who helped Harry, as long as he was helped. As long as he lost that... utter lack of Harry. That's what was wrong, she realised. He wasn't there anymore. There wasn't anything behind the eyes, just an automaton going through the motions, and her blood chilled as she wondered if it was too late for anyone or anything to help.

Suddenly, she didn't care if Parkinson slept with Harry, or if the older girl took away her chance to be with the one boy she'd ever loved. If Parkinson could bring Harry back, she'd dance at their wedding if that was the cost. She'd cry herself to sleep for the rest of her life, but at least he'd be alive.

The sound of the trunk crashing to the floor brought her out of her thoughts, and she narrowly avoided running into the older girl's back.

"What's the problem?" she asked, irritated, but the other girl didn't answer. "Well?"

The other girl turned, slowly. "Can you get his trunk the rest of the way?" she asked, enunciating her words with deliberate care. "I need to take out the rubbish."

Ginny frowned, not understanding what had upset Parkinson, and then caught a glimpse of a door over the girl's shoulder. A door festooned with locks on the outside, not the inside, with a small cat flap in the bottom, with its own lock. It took a moment for it to sink in, but when it did, all the rage and resentment she'd felt a minute before returned, aimed at Harry's so-called 'family', and she felt her skin rippling as her magic threatened to get out of control.

"No," she said, her voice distant through the pounding of her heart in her ears. "It can stay there for now. I'll help. We have to leave his aunt alive, right?"

At that moment, she meant it. She fully intended to kill his uncle and cousin for what they'd done to him, how they'd treated him, and for the rest of her life she would wonder if she would have actually gone through with it. She would never be able to answer herself in any comfortable fashion.

Before she could turn and take that first step down the stairs, she was jolted out of her fury by a dull cry from Harry's room. Abandoning all thought of revenge for the moment, she rushed up the stairs, scant inches behind Parkinson, to see Harry sitting on the floor in the remains of a rickety chair. It was easy to see that it had collapsed under his weight, small as he was. A trickle of blood ran down his arm where a jagged piece of wood had stabbed him.

Shoving Parkinson aside, Ginny darted in. She might not know how to help him get over the pain of his loss, but this she knew how to deal with, after growing up with six older brothers. She'd been able to cast simple healing charms her first week at Hogwarts, simply from seeing her mother cast them so many times.

Gently supporting his arm in one hand, she used her wand to gently coax the splinter out. It wasn't that large, but it was long, and had slid under his skin for over an inch. It required all her concentration to ensure she was getting it all, and not leaving any fragments of wood to fester under the skin. Finally, it was out, and she cast a charm to sterilize the wound, followed by a skin-mending charm. The charm would only heal the first quarter-inch or so of the skin, so his arm would still be tender, but it would ensure there was no chance for the wound to get infected. Finally, she placed a gentle kiss on the injury as she'd seen her mother do so many times with herself and her brothers.

"There," she said, reddening slightly. "All better."

"Thanks," he said dully, and she blinked frantically, trying to hold back the tears. He should have been blushing, embarrassed at having her taking care of him, or at worst angrily declaring he was fine. That's how Harry reacted. This... this wasn't Harry, and it broke her heart to see him this way. She wanted to scream, to yell, to rail against the fates for doing this to him, but it wouldn't help. She had to be strong for him.

He couldn't do it for himself.

"Potter, why don't you go ahead and get a shower?" Parkinson said. "You need to wash that blood off, and you'll probably feel better if you get the dirt from being knocked down off. Weasley and I will figure out what we're going to do about the room while you're doing that, and when you get out we'll see if you like it."

Harry lifted his eyes to Parkinson's, then, without a word, nodded and stood, moving slowly towards the bathroom. When he was out of sight, Parkinson sat down heavily on the bed, but she didn't speak until she heard the bathroom door close.

"Dear Merlin," the Slytherin finally said, her eyes closed. "I knew it was bad, but I didn't realize... Weasley, they told you what I was going to do, right?"

Ginny nodded, her face flaming, and the girl opened her eyes and looked at her. "Good. Because I'm doing it tonight. Actually, I'm doing it as soon as he gets back in here. You can go downstairs, or stay and watch, whichever you prefer. I don't care."

That was something Ginny never wanted to see, Harry with someone else. She opened her mouth to say as much, but stopped as a sudden masochistic impulse swept over her. She shouldn't. It would hurt, hurt bad, hurt worse than when she saw Harry with Cho, but suddenly she wanted to. It would hurt him if he ever found out how much it hurt her, but then, if things went the way she expected them to, he'd never know she loved him. If he knew she loved him and didn't feel the same way, it would hurt him, and she couldn't do that to him.

"No," she said. "I'll stay. I don't want to be alone with... them."

She'd meant it as a lie, but as she said it, she realized it was true. In fact....

"Actually," she said, slowly, "I don't think any of us should be alone with them. I don't trust them."

Parkinson nodded, frowning. "You have a point there. We already know they can be violent, and his cousin...." she shuddered. "If we're going to be stuck in here, though, we need more room. Do you know how to enlarge a room?"

Ginny shook her head, and the other girl nodded. "I didn't think so. They don't usually teach it until seventh year, but I did a bit of independent study. Broom closets are too small for comfort." Parkinson smiled slightly. "It's actually easy. It's a standard engorgement charm, but you cast it on the space in the room, rather than the room itself. The tricky bit is managing to focus on the space, rather than anything else, but once you get the hang of it, it's not too hard. If you can help me cast it, we ought to be able to double the size of the room. I think we can get it to last for a couple of days, and we should be able to work out the necessary rune placement to make it permanent by then. How are you in Runes and Arithmancy?"

"They're not my best subjects, but I do okay," Ginny said. "Look... you really mean this? I mean, the Headmaster said he trusted you, but...."

"But you don't," Parkinson said, sighing. "I can't blame you. And I know you've got a thing for him. I'd offer to let you do him, if I thought it would work. But can you honestly tell me you could sleep with him and not want more than that?"

Ginny hesitated, torn. She wanted so badly to tell Parkinson she could, that she wouldn't push Harry, but it would be a lie. She wouldn't be able to help herself. She'd been able to be patient, to wait, even to date other boys to try to avoid pressuring him, but if she was sleeping with him, if she was doing that with him, she wouldn't be able to stop herself.

It was different with Parkinson. She knew, even if the older girl didn't, that Parkinson would fall for him, eventually. But it would be slow, and gradual, something Harry could get used to a little at a time, not someone wanting everything all at once. Ginny would want it all at once, and it would scare him, she knew that. That's why she'd been so patient. She'd known that eventually she'd get her chance.

But now she was about to lose it, and worse, she was about to give it away. But she loved Harry, and if what it took to make him happy, to keep him healthy, was to give him up, and be happy for him when he was with someone else...

She could do that. It would tear her heart out, and she'd die a little every time she saw them together, but she'd do it, and she'd never let him know.

She swallowed past a sudden lump in her throat, and her voice was hoarse. "I can't," she said. "I would, if I could, but... I can't. It'll be hard enough just living here. If... if I was doing that with him...."

Parkinson nodded. "He can't give you that, not right now," she said. "He needs someone who can give him what he needs without asking for more. I can do that."

Ginny smiled sadly, shaking her head. "I doubt it," she said. "You don't know him. But you will, and once you do, well...."

Parkinson shook her head. "I won't want more," she said. "It's just sex. But it wouldn't be just sex for you."

Ginny shook her head in return. "You're wrong," she said, absolutely certain of her words. "You won't be able to do that with him and not fall for him. Not with Harry. Maybe you could with the Slytherins, but you don't know Harry like I do." She blinked furiously, trying to clear the sudden tears from her eyes. "You'll fall for him, and he's too... too noble not to fall for you in return." She swallowed, dashing away a rebellious tear that had escaped to run down her cheek. "He will, and you will, and I'll lose... I'll lose even the chance to have him."

She flushed, embarrassed to have shown so much weakness in front of the Slytherin, but the other girl simply sighed. "I won't," Parkinson said. "It's just sex. It's a not particularly pleasant activity, at least for me. I'm a whore, not a love interest, so you have nothing to worry about."

Ginny stared at Parkinson for a moment, then closed her eyes. "He won't see you as a whore," she said. "He doesn't see people that way. The closest he comes is with Slytherins, and that's mostly because of Malfoy and Snape. He'll just see you as, well, you. Someone who's done something so brave they should have been put into Gryffindor... and done it for him."

Parkinson smiled at her, a touch sadly. "No," she said, and Ginny barely caught the underlying pain. "He'll see me as a whore. Even the gentle ones do, afterwards. Even the girls do."

Ginny blinked. "Um...."

"I guess I should offer you the same thing I'm offering him, especially if you're going to be watching," Pansy said. "At least, if it's something you like. I don't understand it, but some of the other girls seem to enjoy it almost as much as the boys do when I use my mouth."

Ginny didn't know what to say. Of all the things she'd thought would happen when she finally got to talk to Parkinson, being propositioned was just about last on the list. But... it wasn't actually a proposition, was it? It was simply... an offer, to let her use Pansy the same way the Slytherins did.

In that moment, she understood the older girl better than she would have ever expected. That's what the other Slytherins did: they used her. They didn't make love to her, they didn't sleep with her, they didn't even shag her. They used her.

No wonder she didn't think Harry would fall for her, or she him. How could you fall for someone who used you? But Ginny knew Harry better than, she thought, just about anyone else. She'd watched him over the years, and could generally predict his reactions to most things. He wouldn't use Pansy, she knew that. He'd either refuse her, or make love to her, and even though it hurt to think about it, even though she was so jealous it made her want to break something, she suddenly found she couldn't hate Pansy for getting to make love to him.

Pansy needed it worse than she did. Ginny needed Harry to be complete, but Pansy needed Harry to heal. Pansy needed someone to care about her for her, not for what she could do for them, and Harry could do that.

"You don't want to, do you?" Ginny asked.

It wasn't quite a question, but Pansy answered it anyway. "I don't want to, but I don't not want to. It's not unpleasant, usually, and I'm pretty sure you bathe more often than Millicent."

Ginny opened her mouth to refuse, but stopped before she got the words out. Maybe she shouldn't refuse. Pansy was doing what she could to help Harry. Maybe she should try to help Pansy, in turn.

The problem was that she wasn't sure if she could. She'd never considered doing that with another girl before. She knew some girls liked it, at least intellectually, but she'd never actually given the matter any thought. Could she do it with Pansy? Could she enjoy it enough that it would actually help the girl?

She shifted uncomfortably, trying to imagine what the other girl would look like naked. It wasn't an unpleasant sight, at least assuming Pansy's clothes didn't hide some massive deformity, but it wasn't... comfortable, either.

Finally, wondering absently if she'd lost her mind, and when she'd started thinking of the other girl as 'Pansy', she said, "Um... can I think about it?"

Pansy gave her a knowing smile. "Sure," she said. "Just let me know if you want me to. You aren't hexing me for shagging the Boy-You-Love, so I figure it's the least I can do."

Ginny's face flamed, and she didn't know what to say. Finally, she settled for saying simply, "I don't have any claim on him, Pansy." The startled look on the girl's face brought a small smile to Ginny's. "I'd like to, but I don't."

Pansy raised an eyebrow. "Don't you?" she asked, before turning to transfigure the bed into something large enough for two people, leaving Ginny to wonder what she'd meant.

Several hundred miles away, in his office in Hogwarts, Albus Dumbledore lowered his head into his hands, and silently prayed that Harry would forgive him for fifteen years of hell.