So far it didn't really seem worth waking up at five in the morning to see.
"That's Bode and Croaker, they're Unspeakables. No idea what they get up to."
Ginny yawned. Harry and Hermione were watching as her dad pointed out all the witches and wizards going past their tents. Bode had come to their house for lunch one time, stayed ten minutes and had got a message delivered straight to his pocket which meant he had to leave again. He'd spoken about wizarding politics the whole time, and bored everyone but Percy to tears.
"Ginny," Hermione's voice said, "are you falling asleep?"
She started upright, to see Hermione peering at her. "No," and Ginny rubbed her eyes. It wouldn't do to fall asleep on them. No one else was going to be asleep, you could bet on it. "But let's make some tea, shall we? Has dad figured out the fire yet?"
Hermione glanced over to where her dad was poking the fire with a stick, making the logs cave in on each other. "Er, we should probably wait a little while," and they both winced as ash went flying up, nearly catching Ron on fire.
"I suppose you haven't kept up with Quidditch this summer, have you?" Ginny asked Hermione hopefully.
Ginny jerked her head towards Ron and Fred. They were filling Harry in on every detail of every game they'd ever heard played on the WWN, complete with hand gestures. "It's hard not to keep up in our family. I think Mum ignores it half out of spite, now." Ginny grinned. "Apparently with Bill and Charlie she didn't get involved because she wanted a girl, and then it became a habit. Dad tells the story she always used to say that 'I won't need to know that nonsense when we have a girl'."
George snuck up behind them. "And what are you two girls whispering about?" He tugged on Ginny's pigtail. "Talking about boys?"
"Where have you been?" Ginny said. "And I was going to explain to Hermione Ireland's chances, but you and Dad and Bill do it so much," and she yawned again, "better."
As George outlined the season - quickly, for which Hermione looked quite relieved - Ginny just tried to stay awake. George patted her head, and let her lay in his lap for a little while. She spoke up occasionally, but mostly just listened.
Harry, Hermione and Ron went to have a look around, Fred and George wandered off in the other direction, Bill went to look up some friends from school, and Ginny found herself alone. She yawned again, and propped herself up against her backpack, laying down on the ground. "Ginny!" her dad called out. "Why don't you go have a nap? We'll wake you before the match..."
Ginny just shook her head; there was no way she was going to miss anything - someone would make fun. Besides, the next row of tents over there were about half a dozen Brazilian witches doing some kind of cheer. She'd just sit here, eyes half-closed, and wait for Hermione to come back.
"Let's go, fireball," Charlie told her. "We're going to buy us a present." When Ginny refused to get up, he scooped her up, grunting. "You're too heavy, come on."
Charlie bought her an Irish pendent, and one for himself, and then an iced pop from a vendor. The whole time, Ginny plied him with questions about when he had played. "Goodness," Charlie told her, grinning, "anyone would think you're planning on trying out for the team yourself."
Ginny blushed bright red. The truth was, she'd been considering it - not quite yet, but maybe when there were some Chaser openings, in a year or two. But there was no way she'd ever tell anyone that, especially not her brothers, who didn't even believe she could fly a broom. "Well," but this was Charlie, not Fred or Ron. "Maybe. Not next year, but," and she stopped. He was going to make fun of her.
But instead, Charlie looked her up and down, critically. "Well, you've a good size for a Seeker, though you have to be able to fly fast and tight - haven't seen you on a broom in years, though. Can you handle the Quaffle?"
"Er, yes?" Ginny replied. "Don't tell anyone, they'd come and watch and laugh at me, but - some of us at school play at lunches and on the weekends."
Now that she'd said it, Ginny slowly realized that it could be true. Ever since Charlie played, the whole family had wanted to be on the Gryffindor Quidditch team. Ginny, being youngest and not a boy, had never expressed the desire out loud. But if Charlie didn't think she'd be rubbish--
"Well then," as Charlie ate a huge bite of iced pop, "I'm sure you'll do marvelously."
"It's time out, as trained medi-wizards hurry onto the field to examine Aidan Lynch!"
Ginny was horrified, hanging over the railing and trying to see what was happening to Lynch. He'd plowed right into the ground. Suddenly, the game - exciting enough that she was half-out of her seat, not tired a bit - was quite frightening, too.
From behind her, Charlie said, "He'll be okay, he only got ploughed."
Ginny didn't hear the conversation around her, really - she just stared at Lynch, stomach a bit nervous, until he got up rather wobbly, and got back on his broom. He didn't seem to be the worse for wear, but Ginny was still worried about him. "Does that happen a lot?" she asked Fred, finally. "Ploughing into the ground?"
"Oh, dozens of times a match," he answered airily.
Charlie shook his head. "It's rather fancy flying for school," and then, "so I wouldn't worry about it."
"I wasn't worried!" Ginny scowled at Fred, who looked like he very much wanted to laugh. "I wouldn't ever be caught out in a feint like that," she said to Fred. "So there."
While Fred ruffled her hair, Ginny started thinking about how she might avoid it - not follow the other Seeker too closely; stay below the other Seeker. Of course, being a Chaser, you wouldn't have to worry about things like that, and you had a lot more to do all game-- "Besides," Ginny said, "I'd rather be a Chaser. They don't dive."
Of course, Fred wasn't listening by this point, but Charlie nodded at her.
They were up even after the party in the boys' tent. Ginny couldn't sleep. It was possibly the most exciting night of her entire life - unless you counted being possessed by an evil wizard, and she preferred not to think about that too much. She shook her head, and focused on the game.
"I thought you did quite well," Hermione said suddenly.
"With Harry around. I don't think he noticed a thing."
Ginny looked surprised. "Oh. Harry. Yes, well." She shrugged. "I think that's faded." Hermione looked at her a moment, and then Ginny added, "but I can't believe Lynch's flying! When he looped around the Bulgarian beaters, and then he--"
Hermione took the chance to say, "Oh, you're as bad as your brothers," and smiled at her.
Ginny beamed. "Yes, yes I am."