and light, Ginny thinks, like spiders. Barely felt, hardly noticed and one's skin crawls after the fact: shivering disgust; how frightful to contemplate how long that soft-as-nothing body might have existed upon one's own. Like that, Ginny decides, not like
the coiled heaviness of the great serpents. Hiss and flicker and the rub of scales one against the other. Wide stretched mouth and poison fangs; strength enough to crush a body, large enough to swallow foolish little girls whole. It hadn't been like that, he hadn't been like that. Not a snake: too obvious, too easy. He'd been charming instead, funny and respectful and his words had been like warm hands tracing up and down her spine--shivery and wonderful. There is, Ginny decides, a certain
elegance to spiders. So feared, but beautiful in their way: lovely hunters with light-as-air traps for the weak and unwary. Intricate loops and twists, delicate webbing and how much time must a spider spend spinning webs, Ginny wonders. How much time had he spent in her mind, weaving spiderwebs into her memory. Sticky and wispy and they catch at Ginny's thoughts and there isn't anything she is that he hasn't known. Webbing against her palm like the drag of fine hair. Enough to make her twitch and her mouth open and
the feel of thick parchment at her fingertips can make Ginny shiver. The scratch of a quill against fresh parchment can make Ginny tremble. Scared, Ginny tells herself; but he's been in her mind and Ginny knows things that she's too young to know. Rubs fingers against wet ink, grinds darkness into textured memory and she's not quite scared enough. Some mornings she wakes
night-slick and shaking; too pale skin tightening after the fact--over and done with and it's far too late to protest now. Too late to worry and cry and insist that she's a good girl, that she didn't want. That she didn't want him to admire her, to like her, to want her: dry hands cupping her cheeks and breath like ink against her lips.