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Like A Virgin

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"Pass me the salamander tongues, would you?"

"These?"

"Yes. Thanks."

"..."

"..."

"Hermione, if I'm just here as a sort of maid to hand you the ingredients, I wish you'd tell me now. It's nearly midnight. There are things I'd rather be doing, you know?"

"What? Didn't Ron or Harry - oh bugger. They said they'd explain it to you."

"They told me you needed me, that they couldn't help, but they were a bit mysterious about exactly why. So? Care to enlighten me? Because if it's just because this was beneath them and they thought good old Neville could do it instead, well - "

"No! No, it's not - oh knickers. I'll hex the two of them into the middle of next week when I see them. It's - um. Well, this potion is one that we think will help Harry to defeat Voldemort. It's - well, it's not quite Dark Magic. Quite. But - well, it's definitely on the grey side. Um. So it's all a bit hush hush."

"..."

"I can't believe they left this to me. I'll kill them. I'll kill them slowly. The thing is, Neville, that I need you to help me with one of the ingredients."

"Well I already am, pretty much. I mean -"

"That's - um. That's not quite the kind of help I. God. Um. I need - Ineedoneofyourbodilyfluids. And it has to be fresh."

"You need - what? I'm sorry?"

"...bodily fluid..."

"I thought that's what you said."

"..."

"..."

"This really is extremely embarrassing."

"Isn't it?"

"..."

"So why, exactly, aren't Ron or Harry prepared to bleed for you? Why does it need to be me?"

"It's - um. It's just that they aren't - qualified. Um. And it isn't. Um. Blood."

"Qualified? It's not blood? You don't want me to pee in a bottle, do you? Oh, don't say you want me to pee in a bottle, Hermione, because I really hate it when doctors want you to do that - it's so embarrassing, and I can never make myself go because they're going to know that - that - it's not pee we're talking about either, is it?"

"No. Um."

"Hermione?"

"It's - it's - um. Just - look at the book, okay? I'm really sorry about this, Neville. I thought you knew all about it, and you were okay with this. I can't believe they were so irresponsible. What am I saying, of course I can believe it. I'll kill them."

"Dragon liver...cobwebs...shivering nettlewort...cinnamon...fresh semen from a virg...You want my - Hermione!"

"Oh, Neville, I'm so sorry! Don't look at me like that, I didn't invent the bloody potion, damn it!"

"..."

"Damn. Damn. Damn. Look, I know this is horribly embarrassing, but - well, you're here now, and it's quarter to twelve, and I really do need the, er, ingredient. Couldn't you just, you know, couldn't you - I've got some copies of Playwitch that you could - um. Neville?"

"..."

"Please? It's to defeat Voldemort. I wouldn't ask otherwise, you know."

"If - um. If I could help you, Hermione, I would. You know I would. But what you're asking - I just - I'm not the right person."

"Look, I know it's awkward, but - look, I could cast Viagro, if it helps. Um."

"No! No that's - um. You're sure that Harry and Ron aren't - qualified?"

"Yes. Absolutely positive. Um. I have - er. I have reason to know this is definitely the case."

"Right. Right. So it has to be a virgin?"

"I'm so sorry about this, Neville."

"That makes two of us. But - er, the thing is that I'm not exactly qualified myself."

"You're - what?"

"Mmm."

"Neville, if this is some kind of male pride thing…"

"My pride is pretty much in shreds at this point, Hermione."

"But - but I know you've not been with any of the girls. I'd have noticed. People talk, and I pay attention to things - I always know who's dating, or who's had a secret rendezvous in the broom closet. Unless - oh! Is it a Muggle?"

"No. Very much no."

"Look, it's okay to wait for the right girl, Neville. You don't need to be ashamed of that. I think it's pretty cool, actually."

"But I really haven't - oh, God. Look, Hermione, I'm shagging Draco Malfoy, all right? It's - we've been keeping it pretty hush hush because - well, because. But considering what I've done to him and what he's done to me, I really don't think that anyone in their right mind would consider me a virgin at this point."

"..."

"Hermione?"

"..."

"Well, I guess that answers the question of whether we'd been sufficiently sneaky."