Disclaimer: Yeah, I don't own it.
Author's Note: I really don't have the ability to write anything not random, do I? Well, I rather enjoyed writing this, actually, so please tell me what you think!
Minerva McGonagall frowned irritably, brushing away a stray lock of black hair that had fallen over her cheek, paying no mind to the ink she was obviously smearing there as well. She had been working for over an hour to finish her essay on improper Animagus transformations for Professor Dumbledore, and had missed dinner in the process. So it was with a rumbling stomach that Minerva hurriedly wrote out her conclusion, weaker than her usual ones, but acceptable none the less. Damn, she was hungry . . .
"What are you up to, Minerva?"
It was not a very ladylike and Head Girl-like thing to do, but she shrieked and whirled around, her hands pressed firmly to her waist where a pair of fingers had poked. "Merlin, Tom! I told you to quite doing that!" The dark haired boy in front of her gave a charming grin.
"You're obviously going to have a heart attack before you turn twenty, anyway, why not hurry it along?" he asked lightly. Minerva scowled.
"I am not," she retorted, rather lamely. Hunger did not bring out her best attributes, along with a rapidly beating heat and high blood pressure. She supposed that this ability to become scared so easily was a side-effect of her Animagus transformations, but it irritated her all the same.
Tom simply shook his head. "Of course not. What're you doing?"
"Essay. For Professor Dumbledore. I'm nearly finished," she told him, abandoning all propriety and wiping her ink-stained hands on the underside of her skirt. It's not like anyone looked there, anyway.
Tom snorted. "It figures. You missed dinner. You really need to get your priorities straight."
"I do have my priorities straight!" Minerva said, pushing her glasses up onto the bridge of her nose and glaring at him. Tom only smiled before digging in the pocket of his trousers. He pulled out a shining red apple and pushed it towards her.
"I thought you could use the nourishment," he said. She rolled her eyes.
"We aren't to eat in the library, Tom, you know that," she chided him.
"I know that, it's simply a rule I choose not to follow," he grinned, pressing the apple into her hand. Looking doubtful, Minerva hesitatingly rose it to her lips.
"I haven't poisoned it, you know," he said, half-laughing. "I'm not going to turn you into Snow White."
"Who's that?" Minerva asked curiously, abandoning the apple upon hearing that Tom knew something she didn't. But he shook his head, looking, Minerva thought, a little ashamed, as though he shouldn't know such a thing.
"Nothing, just an expression. Eat up," he prompted her. Minerva rolled her eyes once more before biting into the delicious apple, causing her empty stomach to beg for more. As she finished her apple, Tom sat down beside her, taking from his bag a sheaf of parchments.
"I've got about four more inches to do on my Charms homework," he explained, nabbing her quill from the ink pot. "I had better get it out of the way now. It'll only take a second."
He worked in silence as Minerva sucked the remained juice from the apple off of her fingers. Though it was only a small snack and not the full meal she required, she felt much better and less grouchy than a few minutes before. As Tom scribbled away at his essay, eyes squinting in concentration, Minerva looked interestedly at the rest of the parchments he had pulled from his bag. One of them had several complicated looking Ancient Runes equations, and she longed to study them.
"Tom?" she asked. He grunted to let her know she had been heard. "Can I look at your papers? Those Ancient Runes look fascinating." He gave a miniscule nod, and Minerva pulled the stack towards her. From the top she peeled off several sheets the Runes, before shuffling through the rest in an effort to find more.
"What the-" she murmured to herself, stopping to stare at a rough scribble on a spare bit of parchment beneath the rest. There was what looked like some sort of skull, and what was that coming out of it's mouth . . . ?
Suddenly, a hand shot out and yanked the papers from her with such force that Minerva drew back fearfully. Tom had pulled all of the parchment protectively to his chest, and for a moment he looked almost wild.
"Tom, what's the matter?" Minerva asked, her voice high. When she spoke Tom tensed slightly, and then relaxed, and she breathed deeply. The manic expression was gone from his face, and he once again looked calm and cool.
"Nothing, nothing," he said airily, though Minerva thought she heard something else in his voice, but she couldn't figure out what. "Just, those are my private papers, is all. I'm sorry I frightened you." He seemed generally sorry, and Minerva was inclined to believe him that the parchment he had snatched away from her was simply a few personal matters, though doubt filled her . . .
"Oh. Okay, then," she muttered, and Tom smiled, relieved, before shoving all his papers, including his Charms essay, back into his bag quickly.
"I'd better get going, I told Abraxas I'd be back to the Common Room soon," he told her, dropping her quill into her lap. "Take care, Minerva."
"Goodbye!" she called, suddenly remembering that her conclusion lacked a final sentence. Just as she turned to finish it, out of the corner of her eye Minerva say something flutter to the ground behind Tom's retreating form. She leapt up and scooped it from the floor.
"Tom!" she called, holding it out to him, but he disappeared around the corridor, not hearing her. Minerva sighed and made to stick it into her own bag to return to him the next day when she caught sight of what was on the parchment.
It was the design she had seen just a few moments before, but now she could see it clearly in the light. She had been correct; it was definitely a skull, and, though the drawing was rough and scratchy, Minerva could tell that coming out of its mouth was a snake.
There was nothing particularly interesting about it, but it gave her the creeps all the same.
Shivering and rubbing at the goose bumps that had erupted on her arms, Minerva gathered her things together. "It's just a drawing," she reminded herself, rolling it into a small ball and stowing it in her bag. "It's just a drawing."