Hermione sat near the small pond, tossing small pebbles in the water and watching the rings expand around the splashes they made.
She and Viktor had packed a hamper of food for a picnic, but his mother had called him back to help with a chore and she had been sent along before him to set everything up. She took a deep breath of the sweet air and began poking around in the hamper to see if she could find something to nibble on. She pulled out an apple and began eating it slowly, enjoying the taste that could only come from of Viktor's mother's prize tree.
She heard a 'woosh' behind her and knew he must have raced his broom to get back.
Suddenly, she felt something fall on her arm. A pink rose petal. Then another fell near her, perched on a small rise in the red and white checkered blanket. Another fell on the basket, and then another caught itself in the curls of her hair.
She turned around to see Viktor walking towards her, a white rose in his hand.
“What's all this?” she asked, her cheeks flaming.
“It is a meal nearly as pretty as your are.” He smiled as he handed her the rose and sat on the blanket next to her. The petals were fluttering down evenly now, and Hermione saw a blanket of petals hovering above them. They shifted slightly to give them shade.
He unpacked the basket of it's fruits and light snacks before transfiguring a rock into a large stone bowl. He made another flat and in a pattern that reminded Hermione of a net.
He cleared the area and put some twigs and leaves into the bowl before conjuring a spark and draping the other over it, the flames that were now turning pink, leaping through it and crackling merrily.
“I know you have not seen this trick,” Viktor said, smiling at her.
He turned to the lake and pointed his wand at it. Dozens of fish poked their heads out of the water. He judged them coolly for a moment before pointing at one. The other fish disappeared , but the one he had pointed at slowly made it's way to the shore. Viktor picked it up and quickly put it out of it's misery with a flash of green light.
“Did you just preform an Unforgivable?” Hermione asked, a look of shock on her face.
“They're only unforgivable here if you preform them on humans or animals for sport, not food,” Viktor explained to her. “And I preformed two, not one. I question the cleanliness of this water, the Avada Kedavra will kill the fish along with any harmful thing that may be in it.”
“Like parasites or bacteria?” Hermione asked, looking at the fish.
“Exactly.” He flicked his wand at the fish and it was cleaned and placed in the flame-proof netting over the fire, it pulled itself taut to make a grill and the pink flames lowered until the fish was simmering
“So how do you work up enough anger over a fish?” Hermione asked as she waved her wand at her apple and it fell into neat pieces.
“Life out here is hard sometimes.” Viktor shrugged. “It's not hard to get angry when you need to.”
Hermione was quiet for a moment as she thought this over.
“But today is not one of those times,” Viktor said to her as he grinned and snatched up a piece of orange. “Today is a good day full of fish and fruit; not soldiers or gangsters.”
“This is very a very pretty place,” Hermione admitted as she looked out at the pond and the expanse of wild growth beyond it. “You'd think you could forget the whole world existed out here.”
She turned to look at him and was surprised when his mouth caught hers in a kiss.
She froze for a moment, not knowing what to do, but she felt his hand in her tangle of curls and she relaxed, feeling the touch of his lips and the rose petals gently falling down on them..
It was easier than she thought it would be, and when he flicked his tongue against her lips and she gasped he seemed to like it even more.
He finally released her and they looked at each other for a moment while catching their breaths. He picked up a strawberry and held it out to her. She took it, blushing furiously all the while, her cheeks matching the petals..
“Do you like my kissing Hermione?”
After a week of practice he had finally forced his mouth to make the unfamiliar sounds correctly.
“I don't have anything to compare it to,” Hermione said nervously. “But I thought it was nice.”
“No one has kissed you before?” Viktor asked, a look of surprise on his face. “Are the boys at Hogwarts blind?”
“Feels like it sometimes,” Hermione said grumpily.
“Then I have must to make up for,” Viktor said before leaning in and kissing her again.
She giggled and kissed him back. “For all of them? That's a lot of kissing.”
“It's still not enough.” His dark eyes leveled on her and she felt goosebumps rise on her arms. There was a petal balanced on his shoulder and she couldn't stop looking at it as another fell behind him. “There aren't enough kisses in the world for you.”
Hermione felt her cheeks burn. “I'm afraid I don't know enough about kissing to be a good partner.”
“You're a quick learner,” Viktor pointed out as he kissed her lightly again, the smell of roses starting to fill the air. “And my coach says I'm a good teacher. It's not like Quidditch though...”
He trailed off before he leaned in to kiss her again.
“Quidditch takes a lot of practice,” Hermione said, her blush prettily darkening her cheeks.
“So does kissing,” Viktor said seriously as he leaned in to pepper her cheeks with small kisses as light as the falling petals were..
Hermione felt her eyelids flutter as he made his way down to her neck. “I hope I'm not that fast a learner.”
Viktor started laughing as he pulled away to look at her. “Pull a Ronski Faint.”
You mean, fake it?” Hermione started laughing. He smiled at her: a look that made her heart flutter. “I can try.”