Seasonal Snogging Chapter 9: The Jar Cracked From Side to Side

At approximately 1.45pm that afternoon, Fawkes was heard to give a loud and uncharacteristically vulgar squawk. At about the same time, or perhaps just seconds before, in the office of the Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, there was a loud crack, followed by the sound of an avalanche. Fawkes remained glued to his perch, his eyes widening with surprise at the sight before him. Had he been a human with eyebrows, they would have risen to the very top of his head in a manner not at all unlike the witch who currently occupied the Headmaster's bedroom…and the Headmaster too.

Minerva McGonagall attempted to get up from the bed and retrieve her outer robe which was lying on the floor of Albus Dumbledore's bedroom. With a flash, and the sound of "accio Minerva!" ringing in her ears, she felt herself pulled - and not for the first time - back towards the bed, at first by magic, and then by strong arms that refused to release her.

"We have to go down for Chirstmas dinner, Albus!" She giggled.

"No, no, no! Let's stay here all day. We can have Christmas dinner in bed!"

She attempted to extricate herself from his arms once more. Laughing, she pulled with all her might against his hold, and managed to get one foot on the floor, allowing her to free herself from him. Having lost her arms, he grabbed her skirts instead and tugged with all his might, tearing part of the material. She screamed with amused horror.

"Oh ho!" He cried, taking advantage of her surprise and pulling her back onto the bed, and onto him, "You can't go down to the Great Hall now! What will they say when they see you in such a bedraggled state? Your skirts all torn, your hair falling out…and a big smile on your face!"

"They will say that Albus Dumbledore is beginning to take this Crimbo Contest too seriously and is molesting his staff!" She chuckled

She rolled off him, still laughing, in the other direction this time, and landed before the door - too far away for him to reach without getting off the bed himself. He lay for a moment, watching her with a gleam of mischief in his eyes. She stared right back at him, her cat-senses on alert, ready to make a run for it should he move quickly for her again. He moved an inch, and before he knew it, she had flung the door open and was in the office. At least, she would have been in the office, had she not found herself obstructed.

She took a step backwards into the bedroom. Her gaze was fixed on the office interior, but Albus could see nothing from the bed.

"What is it, Minerva?"

"Are you certain the contest is over, Albus?" She asked, her eyebrows raised, a small smile on her face.

"Quite certain. It is nearly two O'clock in the afternoon. It's definitely over."

"Oh, I see. Are you certain you charmed the jars correctly, then?"

He jumped off the bed in mock fury at the insult.

"Quite certain, again." He said, his arms folded across his chest as if offended by her question.

"Oh, well in that case…" she gave an amused shrug "you had better come and have a look at this."

He moved over to the door with the intention of placing his arms around her waist once more and dragging her back to the bed, but his attention was arrested by the site that met his eyes: his office was covered in rubies. The pile stretched from the corner where he had left the jar to the fireplace, to the main door and to the window - in short, it covered the entire office. It was as high as the window pane, almost as high as Fawkes' perch, and higher than the desk, where neither quill nor parchment could be seen for the rubies that covered it entirely.

He stepped into his office and jumped back quickly, yelping with pain at the feel of dozens of sharp jewels digging into his shoeless feet. Minerva caught him to prevent him from falling as he hopped into her arms.

"What on earth does it mean, Albus?" She asked.

"It means," he said, regaining his balance and kissing her hand, only to see yet another ruby join the gigantic pile "that I have underestimated my brother."

She smiled slightly and silently agreed with him. Albus pulled her closer to him again and bent his head to kiss her neck.

"It also means…" he kissed her throat gently and she sighed "…that, owing to the fact that we appear to be trapped…" he kissed her once more and lifted her into his arms "…we shall have to forego Christmas dinner in the Great Hall. Too bad. We'll just have to have Christmas dinner in bed after all. Now...why don't we try another little experiment? Let's see exactly how many rubies can be squeeze into my office…"

The end