Disclaimer: Ms. Rowling owns all.
A/N : This is my fluffy Christmas Present to all loyal ADMMers out there!! We Will Go Down With the Ship!!
Minerva grumbled to herself as she stopped to rearrange the items on top of her trunk for the hundredth time. This was getting rather tiresome!! None of these things seemed necessary for a normal vacation, but Albus had insisted that she, Xiomara, and Severus Snape take a holiday to the mountains of Colorado in America. Minerva thought him perfectly absurd. Why must one go to America to spend time in mountains? Scotland had perfectly nice highland country!!
But Dumbledore had given each of them a list of all the items they should pack in addition to their normal necessities. Minerva scowled at the Muggle contraptions that cluttered the top of her trunk. Honestly!! These "shoes" looked like bad mitten racquets!! How was she to wear them on her feet? And these poles reminded her of some sort of weapon! When she arrived in the Front Hall, Xiomara and Severus were all ready there. Evidently they were equally thrilled from their attempts to locate, pack, and maneuver these Muggle eccentricities.
Albus waltzed in at the precise meeting of the groups frustration. He was whistling an American Christmas Carol to himself, and gracefully toting a trunk that was over flowing with foreign, oddly shaped objects. Minerva cringed as he dropped his trunk next to hers. Dumbledore pulled out his wand and suddenly a long sledge appeared out of the air, and the quartet's luggage settled onto it. He pulled out a long stick-like object.
"Hold on to the ski everyone! It's nearly time!" Albus announced, grasping the handle of the sledge.
Before any of the staff could ask questions, or protest, they were sucked out of the warm comfort of Hogwarts and spit out in a gargantuan snow drift on the other side of the world. Instantly, Severus whipped out his wand and began to melt the snow and clean the snow off.
"Oh, no you don't, Severus!!" Albus laughed, and he whispered, Accio Wands. Superseding their reactions, Albus had pulled all the wands from the staff members and tucked them in a moleskin pouch on his trunk. "this is a Muggle resort, so it would be unwise to use magic!"
Completely ignoring the death-glares he was receiving from the trio, he turned to the sledge and began removing the racquets off the trunks and handing them to their owners.
"We have a long ways to hike, and the snow is waist deep all the way. I would suggest putting these on. Another brilliant muggle innovation!!" He smiled. Then turning to face the group he suddenly exclaimed, "Oh! I completely forgot about our appearances!! This will never do!" He grinned, and pulling out his wand, he changed their robes into muggle winter gear.
Hooch found herself stuffed into a bright pink snow suit with a furry hood. Severus was wearing a canary yellow snow set, with a green hat. Albus had given himself a purple snow suit with an orange hat. Minerva was the most upset. She had been put in red tight-fitting snow gear and her hair had been removed from its bun. She had a matching wool hat on her head.
"Albus!! What is the meaning of all this?" She shrieked. Her face was starting to match her snow suit.
"Now, Minerva, my dear, just relax." Albus smiled, "This is going to be the most relaxing vacation ever! No troublesome wands, magic, or students!!"
"Or sanity," griped Snape.
Dumbledore was completely oblivious to his colleagues' anger. "Now! Let's get going! We only have a few hours until dark!"
Very awkwardly, at first, the faculty members trudged through the snow trying not to stumble over their own feet. Until they started moving, none of them had bothered to note their situation. They had been dumped into one of the most beautiful areas of the Rocky Mountains. The Peaks that towered around them tore great spires out of the sky. And the trees and snow really were picturesque. After half an hour of hiking, Minerva trudged up to Albus, tactfully avoiding the duo of Hooch and Snape. Xiomara seemed to be doing her level best to initiate a conversation with the stoic Severus. Albus had remained silent since they started out. He seemed to be content observing the scenery.
"Albus?" Minerva whispered. It seemed right to whisper in such beauty. "It's beautiful here."
"My parents brought us here once." Albus returned, watching the movements of a surprised deer as she cantered away from the group.
They marched on in silence for another hour. Minerva's body was beginning to feel the cold. But at the same time, all the members of the party were sweating. It was an uncomfortable combination. Finally Xiomara's whine pierced the air.
"Dumbledore, when are we going to get there? I can't even see it yet!"
"It should only be another half an hour! We had to apparate ten miles away from the resort so we wouldn't be seen!" He was still grinning, though Minerva could have sworn she heard his teeth chatter.
Behind her, Snape tripped on his snow shoes for what must have been the twentieth time.
"That's it!!" He yelled, pulling off one of the ridiculous wicker paddles, "I can't wear these instruments of torture any more!" And he put his foot down.
Instantly, he was on his side, his leg buried deep in the snow. The entire party burst out laughing. The humor helped. They righted Severus and made good time to the lodge.
Albus handled the man at the front desk, and before they had time to ponder the oddites of American rustic décor, they were shown up to their suite. It had a kitchen, a mammoth bathroom, a main room with a roaring fire, and two double bedrooms. As soon as the clerk deposited their luggage and shut the door, they turned to Albus.
"All right, Dumbledore," Snape growled, "We want our wands back now!!"
"This is outrageous!" Xiomara added, "We're grown witches and wizards, are have perfectly good judgment as to the responsible use of magic!"
"Albus, I do think that's going a bit far!" Minerva chorused. They had begun to remove her outer layers of snow gear.
Severus and Albus were both wearing hideous wool sweaters and flannel trousers. Xiomara giggled at the sight of Severus in pants. But she stopped when she noted what she was wearing. She and Minerva were both wearing very tight leggings with rather long fleece tunics that barely covered their backsides. Minerva threw a glare at Albus.
"Minerva! Don't be upset! This is honestly how muggles dress for winter sports!" Albus soothed. Severus was still staring at Xiomara's muscle ridden legs.
"I Don't Bloody Care What the Muggles Are Wearing!" Minerva roared, taking in Severus' expression, "We are not fit to be seen!"
"I'd say you're fit!" Severus squeaked, his eyes wider than saucers.
"Severus!" Xiomara grinned coquettishly. "Would you like to go explore the lodge with me?"
"Of course!" He grinned, "A little stretch of the legs!!" he followed her out the door.
Minerva watched them leave the room, and suddenly felt very awkward. She was alone with Albus Dumbledore.
"Where does one locate a bowl of soup around here?" Minerva hastily queried, as Albus' gaze had begun to slide lower than she was comfortable with. "I don't suppose they have house elves."
"No, no, my dear," Albus stood up rather awkwardly, pants were a very cumbersome experience. "We go to the dining room downstairs!" he offered his arm, and they walked out the door.
The lodge looked like the stories Minerva had heard of rustic log cabins, only just slightly smaller than Hogwarts. The furniture, floors, and walls were all made to appear as if they were cut from the pine trees that dressed the surrounding slopes. Even the dining room was furnished with large lumberjack style tables and chairs.
Minerva and Albus were seated at one of these tables. After they had ordered, Minerva was drawn, as in a dream to the window that composed the Northern wall of the room. The mountains were painted with gentle starlight, and trees seemed to comprise a warm velvet blanket. Minerva was pulled from her dream world as Albus arrived next to her to gaze out the window.
"Albus, why are we so foolish?" She began. It was a rather open question.
"Well, fear is a large part of it. Fear of rejection, threats of war…" Albus moved a bit closer.
"I mean, why do we have to start wars and kill? Look at these mountains!" She pressed a hand against the glass, "They haven't seen a war in eons, but they look so serene and wise. Nothing can stop them! No matter what the pathetic people on the other side of the world do, how many die, or how many kill, the mountains will still be here." She sighed and leaned against him, it felt natural.
"I've often wondered if the mass murderers realize how petty their grievances really are. Could be settle them without the loss of life? Is it so essential to shed blood? Does that give a cause meaning?"
"Sir? Ma'am? Your soup is at your table." The Waiter announced as he returned to the kitchen.
"Shall we leave the mountains in peace?" Minerva offered.
"I'm starving!" Albus assented, "Besides, I'm interested in their snow-yeti sundae for dessert."
As they were returning back to their rooms, Minerva made a request.
"Albus, is there someplace I could step outside to see the mountains?" When he looked surprised, about to protest their lack of proper gear Minerva added, "I want to feel the serenity in person."
"Well, there is a balcony down the hall from the grand lobby." Albus answered, hesitantly.
"Perfect!" Minerva smiled and let Albus lead her there.
They stepped out the door and were sharply surprised by the plunge the temperature had taken.
"Don't stay out here too long, Minerva" Albus chided as he stayed next to the lodge. Minerva strode toward the edge of the Balcony. Unfortunately, a foot of new-fallen snow covered the surface. Minerva was just about to step toward the edge of the railing, when she encountered a patch of ice.
Before either of them had time to react, Minerva was flat on her back staring up at the mountain sky. Albus was there in an instant, swooping her up and carrying her back into the lodge. An observant staff member arrived with a blanket just as they stepped through the door. Albus set Minerva down on the stone entrance tiles and they worked at brushing the snow from her.
"Are you all right, my dear?" Albus asked, his eyes concerned.
Minerva gratefully accepted the blanket and answered, "I'm a little bruised, but I'm fine."
A few steps down the hall, she burst out laughing. Albus turned to look at her covered in her blanket, with her hair all mussed, and he joined her.
"So much for appreciating the serenity of the mountains!!" Minerva chortled.
"Well, I'm sure there was appreciation involved," Albus added, "you got an amazing view of the night sky, from where you were laying." They were walking through the lobby, and several of the guests had stopped to stare at them.
The laughing couple managed to make it back it to their suite. Minerva was soaking wet, as it seemed they had failed to get all the snow off of her. She desperately needed to change. She moved toward the door of the bedroom she and Xiomara were supposed to be sharing, when suddenly she heard a loud moan slip from under the door. It was only then they noted the Do Not Disturb sign that occupied the handle. Minerva jumped back, as though burned.
She turned to look at Albus, who had gone rather red.
"What are we going to do?" Minerva asked sheepishly.
"Well, I would suggest getting the splinter out of your rear…" Albus stumbled over the last word.
"What?" Minerva put a hand to said area and shrieked, "AH! THAT splinter!!" She grimaced as she walked away from the door. "In the cold and surprise of the moment, I didn't even notice it."
"We need to get it out right away!" Albus chided, "It could become infected."
"But…" Minerva started to protest, "Xiomara appears rather occupied…"
"Oh!" Albus finally grasped what was going on in the other suite bedroom, "Well, I could get it out for you!"
"Albus!" Minerva feigned angry shock. She waddled over to the couch. "Who else could…" She absentmindedly sat, only to spring up again. "Oh! Fine, Albus come over here!" She pulled her leggings down to reveal her rather reddened legs.
Albus jumped to action. He skillfully navigated her underwear down and gently began to work the large splinter from its place.
Just then, Snape walked in clad solely in a bathrobe. "Great Godrick!" he shouted, "Get a room you two!" he grabbed a bottle of champagne from his trunk, along with two glasses, and returned to the room. The door locked behind him.
Minerva gazed in horror after him. In that moment, Albus jerked the splinter out.
Minerva shrieked in pain and surprise, lost her balance, and fell straight onto Albus' lap as he sat on the couch.
"Well this is a rather sudden step for a man like me, Minerva." Albus grinned as he helped her to her feet. "But don't you think we should get a bandage for your bum?"
"Albus!" Minerva turned around to playfully bat at him, and as he collided with her, she encountered another playful push from a nether region. "Albus Dumbledore!!"
Albus blushed in earnest, "You do have a rather shapely bum…" He answered, "And this isn't the first time you've done this to me."
"You mean I, what do the students say, 'Turn you on'?" Minerva fumbled for a moment. Then she stepped back, and beckoned toward the one vacant bedroom. "Well, Headmaster, if you are going to bandage up my 'injury', I suggest we follow Severus' advice…"
Albus practically flew to the bedroom, and shut the door behind him.
Just goes to show that you don't need wands to have a Happy Christmas!
A/N Happy Christmas!! Please drop me a line and let me know what you thought!!