Spoilers: Through Order of the Phoenix
Summary: Percy Weasley has just been demoted. He is now Fudge's 'Auror Inspector' and on his first day, Nymphadora Tonks spilled coffee on him. Thereby, he is not a very happy camper and Tonks seems insistent that he not be so uptight about everything.
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Wotcher, Percy Weasley
Percy Weasley was rather fond of his job in the Ministry of Magic. After all, it was a great honour to be the Junior Assistant to the Minister. Hence his annoyance upon being told that no, he would not be returning to his cushy job as the Junior Assistant. And no, Belinda Marshon - the Minister's secretary, who informed people whether they were promoted or not - had informed him, he would not be getting Miss Umbridge's job, even though she was currently in St. Mungo's with a deep case of post-traumatic shock. No, Minister Fudge had assigned him to something different.
Which, he felt, was a perfectly logical explanation for his disgruntled air as he rode the lift up to the second level of the Ministry. He was currently leaning, rather slouched, against the wall of the lift with a few boxes hovering beside him. He was thankful for the fact that there was no one else in the lift with him - he knew there were already questions circulating about his demotion and if there had been someone else there, the interrogation of Percy Ignatius Weasley would have surely begun. As if there hadn't been enough already. At the recollection of the Daily Prophet's version of what they presumed to be a friendly interview - which involved questions that were meant to deliberately provoke him - Percy let out an incoherent growl.
"Level Three, Department of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes, including the Accidental Magic Reversal Squad, Obliviator Headquarters and Muggle-Worthy Excuse Committee," rang out the cool female voice as the lift stopped for a moment. Through the wrought golden grilles that served as doors to the lift, Percy could see wizards hurrying about and pale violet paper airplanes flying rapidly around.
When it was clear that no one was getting on - Percy still had no idea how the lift managed to figure out after a flat three seconds that no one else would board the lift - said lift continued upward. A tic was beginning to make itself known in his jaw as the Daily Prophet interview came flooding back - Fudge had decided that no, of course he wasn't at fault, being the Minister of Magic and all, of course everything was to be blamed upon the Junior Assistant who had insisted that there had been no return of You-Know-Who.
"Level Two, Department of Magical Law Enforcement, including the Improper Use of Magic Office, Auror Headquarters and Wizengamot Administration Services," was what the female voice said as the lift slowed to a halt.
Percy let out a sigh of irritation, swept his hair out of his eyes - it was beginning to get slightly too long now and he kept forgetting to have it cut - squared his shoulders and made a mental note to get a hair cut as the golden grilles opened onto a corridor lined with doors. The tic in Percy's jaw continued as he momentarily surveyed the view of the second level of the Ministry of Magic. He had been down here before - he had been a child, then. Not even Hogwarts-age even - when his father had brought him to work. The tic grew stronger.
As he stepped into the corridor, the boxes floated behind him - enchanted of course. He didn't want to suffer the indignance of being forced to carry his own personal items. That was just too low. As he walked through a pair of heavy oak doors, he managed to duck what appeared to be an army of pale violet paper folded into numerous paper airplanes. The tic in his jaw made way for the scowl that shifted itself onto his face as he acknowledged the rather annoying (in his opinion, anyway) way that inter-departmental communications were handled.
The first thing that Percy noticed upon stepping into the area - well, after the homicidal airplanes - was the noise level of it. That and the rather lopsided sign on the nearest cubicle that read Auror Headquarters. He shook his head wearily at the disorganization of it all. Really, they were Aurors. One would think their work area would be fairly tidy. Apparently, that wasn't the case there. No, it was fairly messy and with its fair share of paper airplanes and people rushing from place to place.
Percy was so busy feeling dismal about his new surroundings that he failed to notice the person who was hurrying toward where he was standing, their face invisible to him, as they were currently engrossed in a sheaf of parchment. A cup of coffee was in the other person's hand, but Percy didn't notice this either.
Of course, as these two persons were not paying attention and were on the same path, Murphy's Law dictates that . . .
Nymphadora Tonks, absorbed in the latest edition of the Daily Prophet and Percy Weasley, currently wallowing in his annoyance for everything, ended up the victims of an early-morning collision, complete with the coffee that Tonks had been holding in her other hand.
Tonks fell to the ground as the coffee spilled out of the paper cup over Percy's pristine maroon robes and his neck. It wasn't all that hot, but it was still quite a grievous annoyance to him. Percy Weasley stood there, wearing his maroon robes, in the Auror Headquarters, with coffee dripping down his back and a rather long-suffered expression on his face.
Nymphadora Tonks drew herself into a sitting position on the floor, wearing the Muggle clothing of jeans and a tank top, with a bit of coffee splattered over said tank top. Her expression was a cross between sheepish and amused.
The pixie-faced woman looked up at the new addition to the Auror Department - the Auror Inspector that was the position that Percy was now demoted to - and her sheepish grin grew. The entire department fell silent and looked at the two, eagerly anticipating what the next move would be for either person involved in the collision.
"Wotcher, Percy Weasley," greeted Tonks with a smile and a twinkle of her dark eyes.
Percy closed his eyes and inwardly groaned. Already he was missing his desk job.
The coffee made a dripping sound as it hit the floor.