A/N: Well, everyone has been asking for a sequel to Running Out of Room.....I thought "Hey, I have nothing better to do..." *laughs* So, here we are. This isn't good, I know....sequels are rarely as good as the original, but here goes nothing! This picks up RIGHT where Running out of Room left off.
"Great. This is just PEACHY...." Minerva kept the smile plastered on her face as she greeted the Gryffindor House ghost. "I didn't expect you by until tonight, Nickypoo..." she exclaimed, smiling sweetly. Nearly-Headless Nick started to reply, but before he had the chance, Albus Dumbledore walked through the unlocked study door.....closely followed by an irate looking Remus Lupin. Minerva shrieked at herself inwardly. "You idiot, you didn't lock the closet study door!"
"My dear Minerva, there seems to be a bit of confusion around here." Albus said, his eyes twinkling merrily despite the current situation. Remus was giving her a look that clearly said, 'What are THEY doing here??'
"Ah....well....that is to say.....well, Professor Lupin just returned for a short visit, and since he assumed the majority of the staff was away in Hogsmeade, he decided to...ah....come by and see me first." she said, hoping her story sounded at least remotely plausible. "And...erm...Professor Dumbledore needed to ask me about the....uh....the....new student that just transferred here from Beauxbatons, and he...uh.....was looking through the records in my study." she explained to Remus and Nick. "Isn't that right, Headmaster?" She gave Albus a pointed look.
"Quite right, my dear lady. Although I must admit, I was a bit surprised to find Remus shut away in the closet...." he replied, trying to hide the amused look on his face.
"The bats!" Minerva cried suddenly, before Remus had time to speak on his own behalf. "There are bats that like to roost in my study closet, and Remus was just....just.....taking a look at them for me to make sure there was no sort of....um....suspicious enchanment attached to them." she said wildly, desperately groping for any sort of excuse, no matter how bizarre. Remus looked baffled, but shrugged this off as a passable reason for his presence. Albus raised an eyebrow slightly, and nodded in the direction of Nearly-Headless Nick.
"And - what is he doing here, exactly?"
Before Minerva had time to make up an excuse, the ghost replied for her. "Well you see, Headmaster, there were some students wandering about the Gryffindor corridor after curfew last night, and I felt it was my duty to inform the Head of House." he said importantly, recieving a grateful look from the Professor in question.
"Yes, well then, I suppose everything is legitimate." Professor Dumbledore conceded, nodding his bearded head. "Now that all these matters have been taken care of, I suggest we --"
He was cut short as a loud CRASH sounded from the corner of the room. All four of them swerved around....only to observe Hagrid, who had somehow fallen through the thin closet door into the bedroom. "Erm....hullo, Professors..." he stammered, his large face reddening.
Raising his eyebrow again, Albus turned back to Minerva. "And....what exactly is his reason?" he asked. Thinking fast, the flustered woman blurted out the first excuse that came to mind.
"Well, you see....my owl, Fitzpickle, has been acting strangely lately, and since Hagrid is in charge of the Care of Magical Creatures Studies, I thought perhaps he could come take a look at the poor thing...."
"Why exactly was he doing so in the closet?" Remus spoke up, looking skeptical.
"That's what's so strange.....Fitzpickle refuses to leave the closet, not even to deliver things for me! I assume everything is in order, Hagrid?" she asked in a tone that was all business as she turned to the large man, who was looking completely lost.
"Er....yes, tha' they are....I'll come back an' check on Fitzpickle in a few days iffen....iffen things don't get better..." he muttered, the oblivious look still on his features. Minerva smiled, satisfied with herself.
"Very well, then. Gentlemen, I thank you each for stopping by. Your help is greatly appreciated" she said, opening the door. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some work to catch up on. Feel free to drop in any time." And with that, the four men exited her quarters, All of them looked slightly baffled about what had just happened......with the exception of Albus, who, as always, looked as though he knew much more than he let on.
Heaving a sigh, Minerva sank down in an armchair. "That was a close one..." she muttered aloud to the empty room. Standing suddenly, she grabbed her cloak off the wall, fastening it quickly about her throat.. "I think I WILL go into Hogsmeade today....I could definately use a good butterbeer right about now..." She left, closing the door behind her.
Several minutes passed before a muffled voice began to call out from the locked bathroom. "Minerva...? Minnie...? Minnie, are you out there? The door's stuck, and I dropped my wand out there....Minnie...?"