Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to JKR. The lyrics to the song "L-O-V-E" belong to Nat King Cole.
Author's Note: This was written as a birthday present for jaye (jayejaye78). So, happy birthday mon petite poulette, and I hope you enjoy your little gift ;D
"Ro, what the hell is this?"
"Oh, shut up, Min. It's a bar, don't tell me you've never been to one."
"Of course I have, and it's from those experiences that I now know alcohol and I don't go well together –"
"The stories I could tell . . ."
"But you won't."
"Sure. Right. Of course. Come on, let's get a drink."
"Are you telling me that you are going to sit here all night drinking tea?"
"Would you be angry if I said that was my intention?"
"Sod it. Oi, two Firewhiskey's!"
"I won't drink it."
"But you're more fun when you're drunk!"
"And what is that supposed to mean?"
"Remember that time in seventh year when I took you to the Hog's Head for the first time?"
"I don't like discussing it."
"I wouldn't either if I ended up singing the karaoke version of 'Spell on my Heart' in front of the entire pub."
"It's not funny!"
"Yes it is, especially considering you have no melody so to speak of."
"Are you finished berating me for things I did well over twenty years ago?"
"No, probably not. Ooh, remember that party we had when Gryffindor won the Quidditch Cup?"
"You scored most of the goals if my memory serves correct. You always were good on a broom."
"Thank Merlin that I got my mind out of the gutter for about five seconds and won't turn that into a sexual analogy –"
"— and complimenting my playing will not divert me from such an excellent memory. I served you at least four or five drinks—"
"Such a considerate friend you were."
"Anyway, I found you and Alastor snogging by the fireplace not a half hour later."
"Are we going to get into that again?"
"Min and Alastor sitting in a tree . . ."
"Don't be childish."
"I really want to go to the Auror office now and remind him of that."
"You wouldn't dare."
" . . . . . "
"Okay, yes, you would."
"You know, before all the war injuries and paranoia, he was quite good-looking."
"What was that?"
"What was what?"
"That! That, 'mhm'."
"It's just that . . . mhm."
"I sense we are moving into a highly uncomfortable territory – oh, look, the drinks are here!"
"No need to unleash that biting sarcasm, darling. Have a sip."
"Live a little."
"Fine then, let's talk about men."
"Give me that cup."
"Ooh, has Min got a cruuuush?"
"That was a very quick response."
"I don't fancy anyone."
"So . . . defensive. Any particular reason for that?"
"What are you, my psychiatrist?"
"How does that make you feel?"
"Oh, shut up."
"I notice that your glass is becoming steadily less full."
"No, it is not."
"Don't distract me. Who do you fancy?"
"I don't fancy no-one."
"Double negative! You're getting drunk!"
"Am not. And what do double negatives have to do with anything? And why aren't you getting drunk?"
"You're a professor, you only use two negatives in a sentence when your head goes all wonky. And I have a high resistance to alcohol, which I find odd as you're the Scottish one and should be able to down a few pints and still be perfectly fine."
"Want another drink?"
"Ye— no! No, no, no!"
"To late! You over there, another couple drinks!"
"Oh, you know you want some more. So, back to our topic of choice."
"You mean your topic of choice."
"Arguable point. So, who's the luck guy?"
"No one important."
"Ha-ha! So there is a guy!"
"How is it that you make me admit to everything?"
"Talent. Come on, spill!"
"There's nothing to spill."
"Drink this Friewhiskey and then tell me that."
"He's just a friend, Ro."
"But you want him to be more."
"Why am I telling you this?"
"It's the alcohol kicking in. It works like Veritaserum for you. Tell me, who is this mystery hunk of yours?"
"He isn't a 'hunk.' He's just a guy . . ."
" . . . who is incredibly gorgeous."
"Convention doesn't say that, I do."
"Oh, Min, don't go all Dumbledore-ish on me!"
" . . . ."
"Is that a blush?"
"No. Alcohol kicking in. I'll go get another couple of drinks."
"Oh no you don't! Minerva Katherine McGonagall, you plant your arse in this chair and spill!"
"You fancy Dumbledore!"
"Not so bloody loud, Ro!"
"You do! I knew it! I mean, gee whiz, what a shocker."
"You are terrible."
"I know. So, how long have you wanted to get in his pants?"
"Sorry, sorry, too good an opportunity to pass up. But come on, Min, I'm scavenging for details here! I always thought you had a soft spot for him at school –"
"Was I that obvious?"
"If you call going dreamy-eyed in his class far too many times to count obvious, then, yes. Very obvious."
"I did not go dreamy eyed."
"Please, you were practically undressing him with your eyes."
"You're much too crude."
"Your glass is empty. Another drink?"
"Tell me more."
"Oh, Ro, I've fancied him for ages and aaaaages."
"Why don't you just shove him into a broom closet and snog him?"
"Rooooo! It doesn't work like that."
"No, it's couldn't. He's Albus Dumbledore. The most eligible bachelor of the shentury."
"You're elongating words."
"Nooo- no, I am not."
"Oh, I haven't got time to argue over what state of drunkenness you are currently enjoying. Why don't you just tell Albus you fancy him?"
"Because he will tell me he doesn't like me that way, then we'll go on with our miserable lives, and I will be a lonely old spinster forevermore."
"God, Firewhiskey gets you depressed. And I think Albus fancies you back."
"Sure. Have you seen the way he looks at you?"
"Like that old Muggle song! L is for the way you loooook at me."
"My ears! They burn!"
"Shut up. Do you really think he likes me?"
"Honestly, you really are more of a ditz than I gave you credit for. Of course Albus likes you. He would like nothing more than to find you, drunk and lonely, then have his way with you –"
"Right, back on track. He more than likes you. I think he loves you."
"No he doesn't."
"Yes, he does. What about all those chess games you play together?"
"I enjoy chesh."
"Yes, well, he does too, but he also enjoys looking at you."
"I think so too."
"Ro, do you think he thinks I'm pretty?"
"Duh, who doesn't think you're pretty? If you let your hair down once in awhile, maybe wore that sexy dress I bought you for your birthday—"
"The one with the indeshently low neck?"
"That's the one. It's very flattering. You should wear it for him."
"You think he'd like it?"
"Maybe I'll show it to him."
"You want to?"
"All right then."
"Let's go back to the castle; I'll make you look gorgeous for Albus."
"Oh . . . you're really sure this is a good idea?"
From his position behind the bar, Aberforth Dumbledore gave the two women leaving the pub a look of horror. Was that drunken woman, the Deputy Headmistress from the look of her, actually going to seduce his older brother?
Well, there certainly wouldn't be a problem with helping them along a bit . . .
Poppy Pomfrey looked up tiredly from where she had been filling out medicinal requests for St. Mungo's. With a glance at the clock, she realised she had been working for well- over three hours. She gave a shuddering yawn and decided it was finally time for bed.
As she made to lock up the infirmary, however, a silvery form burst through the doors. Poppy struggled for a moment before she realised it was in the shape of a goat, and smiled. Aberforth had sent her a message.
"Hello there," she muttered. "What have you got to say?"
The goat nudged against her leg before shining writing appeared in the air. Poppy clapped a hand over her mouth as she tried desperately not to laugh at what was going on.
Throwing her cloak on, she bent down to give the goat a kiss on it's furry head before softly opening the doors and heading out towards the grounds, where she was sure to find an amused Rolanda and a very drunk Minerva.
Albus Dumbledore looked over his half-moon spectacles distractedly. He had been drafting responses to various wizards and witches at the Ministry for so long his eyes were starting to glaze over. Standing from his desk, Albus moved to stroke Fawkes' head, who cooed in response.
"I wonder where Minerva is," he murmured to himself. Then he felt sick. He had been entertaining random thoughts about his Deputy all day long, and the sort of attachment he was beginning to form was quite improper. Besides, hadn't Rolanda mentioned she had taken Minerva to Hogsemeade tonight?
"She'll meet a nice young man there," he told Fawkes with finality. His pet looked up at him with an expression on his face that made Albus sure that if he could talk, he would be calling his master an idiot.
"A walk will refresh me," he said, giving Fawkes one last pat on the head before pulling on his cloak and descending into the corridors, on his way to the grounds.
"Min, come on!" Rolanda moaned, pulling on her friend's arm. Minerva looked with trepidation at the large form of Hogwart's castle.
"But what if Albus hates it?" she asked nervously, trying without success to smooth down her sweat-drenched hair. "Oooh, Ro, is thish a good idea?" Rolanda rolled her eyes.
"You're gonna knock his garish-coloured socks of, Min," she assured her. Minerva giggled softly.
"Okay then. Lesh go!"
Albus relaxed slightly as the cold night air hit him. The velvety purple sky was drenched with shining stars, giving him a lovely view of the entire grounds.
He strolled slowly around, taking in the charming, picturesque landscape that was Hogwarts. Hagrid's cabin was silhouetted off in the far distance, with the gleaming water from the lake casting glittering shadows onto the wooden walls. Turning his head slowly, he took in the sight of warm yellow lights from the castle against the dark earth, along with the figures of . . . two women?
Albus did a double take. He could just barely make out the figures of two women who were nearing the entrance to the castle. Rolanda said she and Minerva were going to Hogsemeade, he thought idly, before coming to a complete halt. Why should he care in the least? Besides, it wasn't like the pair needed him to escort them –
His inner musings were, however, cut short when Albus noticed one of the two figures was stumbling, and the other was holding onto her arm slightly. He stopped, completely torn. The woman who stumbled was a few inches taller than the other, so she must be Minerva. Was she hurt? If so, he should go help her. But what signals would that send?
Oh, sod it! He thought fiercely. If Minerva was hurt, his first duty was to make sure she was all right. Turning sharply, Albus made his way towards the two figures.
"Oh, for Merlin's sake!" Poppy cried as she reached her two friends. Rolanda had a firm grip on Minerva, who was stumbling every few feet and reeking of alcohol. "Ro, I trusted you to take her out for a friendly night in Hogsemeade, and you manage to get her bleeding drunk!" Rolanda, however able she was to hold her drink, flinched at the loud volume of Poppy's voice.
"Poppy!" Minerva squealed delightedly, sounding very much like a child. "Ro ish going to help me look nice for Allllbus." Poppy tried to resist the urge to roll her eyes.
"That's nice, dear. But first you should come in and clean up a bit." Minerva nodded seriously.
"Okayyy," she agreed, twirling around to grab hold of Rolanda's arm. But just as she did so, she pointed her finger off into the distance.
Did she just call my name? Albus thought, increasing his pace just in case. As he drew nearer and nearer to the school building, it was obvious that Rolanda and Minerva had been the one's he had seen earlier, but now Poppy had joined them.
Her hair's come down, Albus noted as he looked up at her. And her dress – is it really supposed to be that low cut? Er. Well.
Struggling to regain his composure, Albus hopped up the steps towards the three witches. For reasons that he did not really want to contemplate at the moment, his gaze was immediately drawn toward his Deputy, whose cheeks were flushed and she was gazing at him with something strange in her eyes.
"Hello ladies," he said as he reached them. "Minerva, Rolanda, did you enjoy your trip to Hogsemeade?"
"Yes, we certainly did!" Rolanda called loudly. Poppy made a face before turning to Albus.
"Ro managed to get Min completely and utterly drunk," she informed him dryly. "I'm going to go retrieve an anti-alcohol potion. Stay here." With a final withering glance she walked back into the school.
Albus raised his eyebrows as Rolanda, who was grinning sheepishly. "Drunk, did she say?" he finally asked. The flying instructor nodded. Well, he thought, observing Minerva, who was busy staring in rapture at the starry sky, that certainly explains the stumbling.
Minerva suddenly turned towards him. She grinned widely, and Albus found himself hard pressed not to wrap his arms around her. "Albus!" she cried, an odd lilt to her words that was no doubt alcohol-induced. She walked towards him, obviously trying her best not to stumble. Albus nearly laughed out loud – no matter how much he respected Minerva, it was endlessly entertaining to see her drunk.
Albus looks nice tonight, Minerva observed idly, though she had the vague notion she shouldn't say this out loud. However, the layers of alcohol clouding her brain refused to let her know precisely why. She did manage to realise this was entirely Rolanda's fault. What else is new?
"Albus!" she called out, quite unsure of why she was doing so, but thinking that she might make a comment or two on his lovely choice of robes. And beard. And face. And gorgeous blue eyes . . .
I must not make a fool of myself, she chanted stubbornly, trying the best she could not to trip and fall.
It all happened in one moment when her foot really should have gone the other way, but the drunken haze that she was beginning to hate with a passion made it go the opposite way, and before Minerva had a clear idea of what had happened, she was enveloped in Albus's arms.
That was honestly Albus's first thought. Because for some strange reason Minerva was leaning against his chest with her arms wrapped around him.
She had stumbled.
He had thought she was doing quite a good job at not stumbling, really. For a drunken woman she still carried herself well. Then her legs had gotten tangled up within each other, and she had fallen forward as if in slow motion and landed on him.
This was really not supposed to be happening.
But for some reason neither of them had moved.
"What in the world . . ."
Poppy looked bemusedly between the Headmaster and his Deputy, who were staring at each other with their mouths gaping open. Minerva was pressed against Albus, leaning heavily on him, as though she couldn't support herself. Which, she probably couldn't, Poppy reminded herself wryly. The girl could never hold her drink.
"Here," she said briskly, ignoring the position her friends were in, and thrusting a vial of blue-green liquid in Minerva's face. "Drink this. It'll sober you up in no time." Minerva nodded. She took the vial and uncorked it slowly, as though having a hard time tearing her eyes away from Albus.
She tossed the contents in her mouth without a second thought, and then promptly spluttered in a disgusted way. "Poppy, this ish revolting."
"And it obviously works, as you're starting to use longer words," piped up Rolanda, who was feeling as though the others wouldn't like her prolonged silence, when really they appreciated it.
Almost imperceptibly, the alcohol in Minerva's system was being washed out, thanks to the potion of Poppy's. As the potion worked its way through her body, ever so slowly she began to get her sense back.
Oh. My. God.
She was leaning on Albus Dumbledore. Practically falling all over him. Oh, this was definitely not going the way she had hoped.
Albus blanched when he saw Minerva's cheeks turn red, knowing that the anti-alcohol potion was beginning to take effect. Merlin knew what was running through her mind as she took in their position.
"Um," he muttered, "I'll just, er, be –"
"For God's sake, don't leave!"
Albus and Minerva both turned towards Rolanda, who was standing with her hands on her hips, obviously beginning to feel the results of her earlier drinking. She pointed a finger slightly to the right of where both of them were standing.
"You haven't kissed," she offered as explanation. Minerva glared furiously at her.
"What's you point?" she hissed dangerously. Rolanda held up her hands as if in defense.
"I'm just sayin'," she muttered, "You need to kiss."
"Beg to differ," Minerva said loudly, just for the sake of seeing her best friend flinch.
Yet, oddly enough, she had not moved from Albus' arms.
"Minerva?" Albus's voice whispered quietly into her ear. She turned towards him, willing her face not to turn pink again. Damn her eternally blushing cheeks.
"She's right, you know," he said softly.
Wait. What? "Right?" she asked confusedly. Albus nodded.
"We haven't kissed."
Oh. Oh. Oh.
"Er, well then, erm, maybe – I mean, um . . ." And the rambling was back with a flourish. It made Minerva's mind retreat back to her school days, when a simple praise from Professor Dumbledore made her babble like an idiot. Her face flushed once again.
"So?" Rolanda's voice cute through the couple irritably. "Are you gonna kiss or not?"
Minerva looked up at Albus. For a moment they seemed frozen, and then, they weren't really sure how, but a force propelled them towards each other, and Rolanda was wolf-whistling in the background, and Poppy was laughing, and their was a haze around them both which was not at all alcohol induced . . .
"See, Min? You see!"
"Shut up, Ro."
"Ha, I win!"
"Fine, fine, you win."
"Wait, what? Say it again."
"I will then. I win! I got you and Albus together!"
"Sure, right, yeah. Let's go."
"Oh, no. I will relish in this glory forevermore."
"I wouldn't expect anything less."