Disclaimer: Anything you recognize belongs to the goddess, JKR. This is a short ficlet based on the chocolate frog card for Albus Dumbledore, which stated his interests as chamber music and 10-pin bowling. It's meant to be funny so I hope you laugh. There is a little bit of naughtiness but it's all in fun.
Bowling Balls and Full-Length Novels
The date had been set for some time now but Professor Severus Snape had secretly hoped that Voldemort would kindly oblige him and attack Hogwarts sometime in the interim. Unfortunately, the Dark Lord was not very accommodating and so the Potions Master, Head of Slytherin House and former Death Eater found himself dressed in a very loud silk bowling shirt and black trousers, waiting for his colleagues for their annual bowling tournament. A "teambuilding" exercise as Albus called it with that trademark twinkle in his blue eyes.
An exercise in restraining himself from throttling his fellow professors would be somewhat closer to the truth in the Potions Master's humble and completely unbiased opinion. Only his deep respect for the old Headmaster would have induced him away from his laboratory in such a garish outfit.
"It could be worse," he sighed as he shifted the bowling bag from one hand to another. "I could have been wearing a red and gold shirt."
"You look very nice, Severus," Minerva McGonagall came out wearing the dreaded red and gold silk shirt and black trousers as well. "Really, would a smile hurt you that much? You know how much this means to Albus."
"My dear Minerva, I am fully cognizant of the fact that this is one of Albus' most treasured outings. He positively delights in torturing me with this game that makes Quidditch seem as exciting as creating Veritaserum."
"Imagine that," Minerva smirked. "Come now, Severus. It will be fun. Besides, it isn't as if Lockhart will be on your team."
Severus shuddered as he remembered the tournament from five years earlier. He was convinced that the flamboyant professor's shirt could glow in the dark. The pompous ninny spent far too much time admiring his reflection in his bowling ball and thought the object of the game was to roll the balls into the gutters, judging from his delighted pirouettes and leaps each time it happened.
The gaudy former professor had earned many stares. Really, losing his memory was the best thing that had ever happened to Lockhart. Severus almost grinned at the thank you card he very nearly sent to Potter and Weasley that year.
"Thank you for that most pleasant of reminders. But, I must admit, you are correct. That arrogant fraud didn't hit a pin the entire evening. And his endless prattling on about Lockhart this and Lockhart that…it made my very teeth ache."
"A pity you couldn't hit have him with something a little harder at that dueling club," Minerva smiled.
"I hardly think you would have forgiven me. You were practically besotted with the man…along with nearly the entire female population of the school," Severus smirked, putting down the bowling bag and crossing his arms over his chest. In his present attire, it didn't have the same effect as it might have were he to have been wearing his customary flowing black robes.
"I was not," Minerva looked horrified. "I…merely admired him for his work."
"I'd say you admired him for more than just that," Severus drawled.
"Honestly, Severus. He was a handsome man. I may be Deputy Headmistress but I am not dead," she huffed indignantly.
Severus laughed. "Please forgive me, Minerva, if I poke a little fun at your expense. And, to your credit, you showed much more discretion than that fool Hooch who practically…"
"Practlcally what?" Eliza Hooch stepped out in her black and white checked silk shirt and requisite black trousers. Her amber eyes trained on the now silent Potions Master.
"I was about to ask the same question, Eliza," Minerva replied with a wicked smile, nudging her colleague in the ribs.
"Oh come on, Hooch…we all know how you waylaid that scandalous rascal in the corridors," Severus muttered, a bit of colour appearing on his otherwise pale cheeks.
Eliza smiled. "Well…I have to say that I didn't give him the opportunity to regret it."
Minerva's jaw dropped in shock. "You didn't!"
Eliza smiled brazenly. "Oh, but I did."
Severus cleared his throat to remind the two obviously hormonal women that he was still within earshot. They both pointedly ignored him.
Eliza shrugged her shoulders. "I've ridden broomsticks with more…"
"Good evening ladies," Remus Lupin stepped out. His shirt had an oriental design to it with a fierce dragon curling around it. Black trousers…of course.
"Lupin, I am so pleased you are here," Severus sighed with relief. Silence truly was golden.
"You are?" Remus looked at Severus as if he were running a high fever and was delusional.
"Yes. These women are driving me mad with their infernal chattering about Lockhart."
Remus nodded in cautious understanding. "I never met the man but, for a while, I saw his face everywhere. Weak looking. Never thought much of him. The ladies obviously did. Reminded me of when we were students here. All the girls wanted Sirius."
"Thank you for plunging me into the depths of despair once again, Lupin. Speaking of miscreant animagi…where is Black?"
"He is on his way. I believe he was choosing his ball," Remus replied.
Eliza burst into laughter, causing both Severus and Remus to look at her in confusion. She whispered something into Minerva's ear. The Deputy Headmistress blushed and it was obvious that she was holding back a bad case of the giggles.
"What is so funny?" Remus asked Severus. Severus simply rolled his eyes and muttered something about confounded women.
Sirius Black and Filius Flitwick were the next to arrive.
"Can't I use Wingardium Leviosa…I am a lot more compact than the rest of you," the diminutive professor complained in his black shirt with embroidered white feathers and, to no one's surprise, black trousers.
"That is not how it works. Besides…you're a far better player than you're letting on," Sirius grinned, slapping the smaller professor across the back and nearly knocking him into Minerva.
"My apologies, Minerva. Sirius does not know his own strength." Filius looked absolutely flustered as he placed his bowling bag on the ground, huffing slightly.
Sirius walked over to Remus.
"Nice shirt, Black," Severus muttered. "The only thing missing is a leash."
Sirius glanced down at his shirt. It was blue silk with the Little Dipper constellation in silver thread. A dog was superimposed on the Dog Star and it looked as if it were winking rakishly.
"You're just jealous, Snape," Sirius grinned. "Your shirt looks rather Slytherin, wouldn't you say?"
Severus glared at Black. "If you are referring to the fact that my shirt is a lovely geometric design of green and silver which is both tasteful and fashionable then, as Head of Slytherin House, I thank you for pointing out the blatantly obvious. Were you, perhaps, expecting a red and green shirt with a lion prancing around the front?"
"I really can't imagine anything prancing around you, Snape," Sirius shot back.
Remus chuckled. "Did you choose your ball, Sirius?"
More laughter from Minerva and Eliza caused all the men to glance in their direction with confused glances. Eliza was practically falling on the ground and Minerva was trying to disguise her mirth with a bad impression of someone choking on an overly large piece of squid.
"Are you all right, Minerva?" Severus commented with a wry smile. "You sound like you are coughing up a decidedly unpleasant hairball."
"Speaking of balls, I chose the green # 18 for tonight. She's a beauty and I just gave her a hand job with polish today," Sirius interrupted.
Minerva fell to the ground in hysterics. Eliza was leaning against the wall, tears streaming from her eyes.
"What is with them?" Remus scratched his head.
"Nutters…the lot of them," Sirius shook his head as he brought out the large green ball and showed it to the others who made the appropriate noises of admiration.
"Ah, and here we all are," Albus Dumbledore, accompanied by Hagrid, stepped out of an adjoining corridor. He, along with the now obvious black trousers, was wearing a bright purple shirt with miniature versions of the Sorting Hat all over it. Black trousers completed the outfit. Hagrid wore a huge red and gold shirt with a lion that could not have been doing anything other than prancing. And, of course…very large black trousers…with lots of pockets. Severus snorted loudly.
"Ah, Professor Lupin…really like yer shirt," Hagrid looked at the dragon longingly.
"Are we ready to go? I can't tell you how excited I am," Albus put down his bowling bag and rubbed his hands together in glee.
"I can barely contain myself," Severus groused.
"Did you bring your wrist brace, Albus?" Minerva, trying to present a more decorous face to the Headmaster, asked dutifully.
"Of course, Minerva. Poppy would have taken out all my arm bones if I hadn't shown her that it was in my bowling bag," Albus chuckled.
"So what're we playin' fer tonight?" Hagrid asked.
"Bragging rights for the remainder of the school year and a bag of Galleons to be split among the winning team," Albus announced, waving his wand and causing a bag of Galleons to appear.
Severus immediately began drooling, thinking of all the potions ingredients he could buy.
"That could buy a nice night on the town with a couple of…"
"Sirius, please!" Remus admonished, glancing at the Headmaster meaningfully.
Sirius hardly looked concerned. "Well, it's a better use for the money than what Snape has in mind. He'd probably go out and buy asphodel and wormwood."
"An excellent idea," Severus smiled.
"And I know exactly what I would do with it," the Potions Master thought to himself with a small grin.
"Let us be off. We will walk to the gates and disapparate to the bowling alley. Then if everyone is amenable, we will stop by The Three Broomsticks afterwards for a bottle of butterbeer," Albus announced, picking up his bowling bag and walking towards a huge oak door.
As they made their way to the gates, Minerva and Eliza dragged behind.
"So, Lockhart wasn't anything to write home about?" Minerva asked in a low voice, not wanting the others to hear.
"Well, if he were, it would be a very short letter," Eliza giggled. Minerva covered her mouth and looked at the flying instructor with a gleam of amusement.
"Now, Sirius Black," Eliza continued smoothly, "well, he is another matter entirely. He is a full-length novel…"