Ginny always thought there was a certain sadness that came with putting away the Christmas decorations. As she tucked another ornament away in its box, she thought about the holiday.

Beautiful paper had been ripped and torn to reveal presents she hadn’t really wanted. Relatives had pried into her private life. Her mum badgered her about finding a husband. Her brothers foisted diaper duty onto her. Her sister-in-laws insisted their children all wanted Auntie Ginny.

Given a choice, she’d avoid her family for the next few weeks and spend her evenings blissfully curled up with a good book in her flat. Looking around her small living room she smiled. She loved her tiny flat. Everything in it was hers. It had never belonged to Bill or Charlie or any of her other brothers.

She checked the tree to make sure she’d removed all the ornaments. The faceted crystal star on top of the tree twinkled down at her. Her vision blurred. She remembered when he’d given it to her. Draco had said the star was a promise. One day they would decorate a tree together. That was five years ago.

He’d graduated and started rebuilding his family business. At first they wrote to each other all of the time. Then the span between his letters slowly widened. His last letter came a month before Christmas during her final year at Hogwarts. All the letters she sent after then were returned unopened.

It made her crazy that he’d never offered a reason why. He’d simply cut her out of his life. She’d tried tracking him down, but they didn’t travel in the same social circles. Over the years, she saw his picture in the society page. He was always seen in the company of a beautiful, rich witch. Ginny wondered if that was why he’d disappeared from her life. She was realistic enough to know she wasn’t beautiful. Everyone knew she wasn’t rich.

As she took the star down from its perch, she reopened emotional wounds by reflecting on how they’d come together. It happened after the war, during his last year at Hogwarts. She’d come across him skulking around the castle late one night. He tried scaring her off, but she followed him around anyway. When he realized he couldn’t get away from her, he’d begun asking her questions. She found herself pouring out her life story. He was a surprisingly good listener.

They’d met accidentally a few times after that before he sent her an owl asking her to meet him one night. When she’d shown up at the appointed time, he’d kissed her. At first she was shocked, and then she was thrilled. For months, they just kissed and talked. She discovered that he suffered from the same insecurities as everyone else. He thought that he was too pale and too thin.

He told her stories of his childhood that made her hope Lucius was rotting in hell. She spoke of her childhood and saw envy in his eyes. Together, they seemed to smooth over old injuries.

When the holidays arrived, he gave her the star. She’d been touched by his promise of a future. Now she realized she’d been touched in the head for believing a hormonal boy. He’d probably spent all day trying to think of the perfect line to make her let her guard down. It had worked. She’d given herself to him that night.

To this day she didn’t regret her actions. Their time together was magical. No male since had inspired her to move beyond a good night kiss.

Ginny turned the star over in her hand. She wondered if their passion was as real as she remembered, or if it was colored by time.

As she mused, she traced the facets of the star with her fingertips. Thinking of the game she used to play when she was a child, she murmured, “Star light, star bright, the first star I see tonight, I wish I may I wish I might have the wish I wish tonight.”

She closed her eyes, thought of Draco, and grasped the star a little tighter trying to feel the connection she’d had with him years ago. All she felt was a sharp pain on the pad of her thumb. When she opened her eyes, she found she was bleeding.

“Figures,” she muttered. She sat on the couch and used her wand to clean and heal her thumb. She wrapped up in an afghan and lay back on the couch. She ignored the cobwebs hanging in the corner and decided it might be time to move on with her life.

A knock on the front door startled her. She discovered Hermione in the hallway with a frown on her face. “Ginny, I found something while I was putting away the Christmas decorations.”

She held a green envelope out to Ginny. “Ron says it came to the Burrow on Christmas Eve the year you finished school. He claims he was only looking out for your best interests. I already yelled at him, but you may want to hex him.”

Ginny’s hand shook as she reached for the envelope. She opened it carefully and pulled out the letter inside.

‘ I’m sorry I haven’t written in a while. Malfoy Industries has been under investigation by the Ministry. I’m not sleeping much. The mirror says I’m even paler than usual. I know you’re with your family and this might be difficult, but I was hoping you would come to the Manor. I’ll be waiting for you.’



The writing on the parchment blurred as Ginny’s eyes filled with tears. It was so unfair. He’d wanted her and she’d never known.

She clenched her hands into fists and felt something hard inside the envelope. Upending it in her palm, she found a small velvet bag. Inside the bag, she found a star shaped pendant. The moment she touched it, she felt the tugging sensation of a portkey.

A moment later, she found herself standing in a elegant parlor in front of an amazed Draco. “I just got your letter,” she blurted out. “Ron hid it from me. I would have come.”

Draco stood up slowly and scowled at her. “You’re not real.”

Ginny looked at the half empty bottle of firewhisky beside his chair. She stepped forward. “I am real.” Holding the necklace out for him to see, she said, “See. I have your portkey.”

“You’re a bit late aren’t you? I sent that years ago.”

“Ron hid it. Hermione found it and gave it to me tonight.” She moved closer, wanting to touch him but afraid he’d push her away. “I came.”

She didn’t know what else to say.

He set his drink down. “Why did you come?”

This wasn’t how it was supposed to be. She reached out to trace her fingers along his cheek. “I came for you.”

At her touch his features softened. Plucking the necklace from her fingers, Draco slid the chain over her head. Slowly, as if he was afraid she might disappear, he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her against his chest.

They stood that way for a long time. The warm scent of his cologne brought back so many memories. She was afraid to do or say anything that might cause him to let go. When he gently pulled away from her, she was afraid of what he might say.

“I saved your present.” He led her towards the mahogany mantle over the fireplace. With one hand he reached up and opened an ornate wooden chest. He pulled out a small gift wrapped in faded red paper.

Ginny took the box. Beneath the paper she found a black velvet box. Within the box nestled a ring with several diamonds set to form the shape of a star. “It’s beautiful,” she whispered.

Draco removed the ring from the box and placed it on the fourth finger of her left hand. “It’s an engagement ring.”

“I hoped it was,” Ginny admitted, crying and laughing at the same time. She held her hand up and watched the diamonds sparkle in the firelight. “This is the first Christmas I’ve ever gotten exactly what I wanted.”

Draco smiled. “You do realize it’s the day after Christmas?”

“It still counts,” Ginny pulled his face down to hers. He smiled against her mouth and then kissed her. Dormant passion sparked and roared to life like a bonfire.

When Draco pulled away from her, they were both breathing heavily. “You do realize I’m going to kill your brother.”

“He doesn’t deserve to get off that easy. Don’t you think a life of torment would better fit the crime?”

Later, as they lay in an enormous four-poster bed, Draco convinced Ginny to have the wedding on New Years Eve. She decided to make it an adult only affair, so that her brothers would all feel the sting of having to pay for baby sitters. She planned to ask Hermione to be her maid of honor.

Draco insisted Blaise be the best man. Ginny readily agreed to his choice. She knew this would cause Ron an extreme amount of discomfort, because her brother always suspected Blaise of having a thing for his wife.

Right before she drifted off to sleep in Draco’s arms, Ginny wrapped the comforter around her body and walked over to the Floo. She threw in a handful of powder and yelled for her brother.

“Ronald, I need to speak to you.”

Ron’s head appeared in the fireplace. He took one look at his disheveled sister and said, “Damn it. This is what I was afraid of.”

Ginny spoke through gritted teeth. “The only reason you’re still alive is because I don’t want your children to grow up without a father. You had best start working on an elaborate apology that involves a lot of groveling,”

“Duck,” Ginny heard from behind her. She ducked as a spell flew over her head. Ron’s screaming and cursing told her Draco had hit his mark.

She turned to look back at her fiancÚ. “What did you just do?”

He shrugged. “It was your run-of-the-mill boils and hemorrhoid hex.”

"Good choice."

Once she was back in bed, she cuddled up against Draco and said, “We’ll have to make that his yearly Christmas present.” She drifted off to sleep content that for the first time in a long time, all was right in her world.
The End.
CCC is the author of 47 other stories.
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