Harry and the Easter Bunny

It was the Saturday afternoon before Easter. Augusta Longbottom, the grandmother of Neville, Harry's best friend, had to stay in St. Mungo's for a few days, and Neville was allowed to stay at Hogwarts, where Harry lived together with his adoptive mother, Minerva McGonagall. Minerva was just having a meeting in her office together with Severus Snape, Pomona Sprout, and Filius Flitwick.

Suddenly, Pomona chuckled and whispered to her colleagues, "Listen to the kids, it's too funny."

The two seven-year-olds were playing in the adjacent living room of Minerva's and Harry's quarters. "Harry, do you think we could go to the kitchen and see if we can get two carrots that we can give to the Easter bunny?" Neville asked hesitantly.

"All right," Harry answered thoughtfully. "Maybe we should get some pumpkin juice for him as well."

"Oh, yes, that's a good idea – he'll certainly be thirsty. Can you call a house elf or do we have to go to the kitchen?" Neville asked eagerly.

"Teddy?" Harry asked hesitantly, slightly flinching in surprise when a house elf popped up directly in front of him, bowing so deeply that his ears slapped over Harry's face.

"Yes, Master Harry, what cans Teddy does for Master Harry and Master Harry's best friend?"

Harry frowned. He didn't like the elves call him Master. 'I'm only a child, they are much older and wiser, so why should they call me Master?' he thought, but dismissed the thought immediately and ordered two carrots and a glass of pumpkin juice. Both popped up on the table within seconds.

"Where should we put them?" Neville asked as he looked around the mess they had made of Minerva's living room. They had been playing with Harry's train set for hours, and beside the train set there were lots of small toy cars, Lego blocks, Playmobil animals, and other toys littered on the floor.

Harry frowned. "Just next to the Easter baskets Aunt Minerva made with us this morning? They can stay on the table, can't they?" he asked anxiously.

"Oh, I think so. Where else should we put them? Your Uncle Severus said we should clean up, otherwise the Easter bunny won't come, right?"

"Yeah, he said so, but look, we have more pressing things to do. We must make signs for the Easter bunny, so that he'll be able to find the food and pumpkin juice." He ran over into his own room and returned with a bunch of parchments and crayons. "Here, let's make arrows on a few pieces of parchment, from the door over there along the book shelf, and…" He gestured around the room.

"All right," Neville said agreeably and started to draw large arrows before he cut them out. "Hmm, we need spello-tape to attach them, Harry, do you have some?" he then asked, looking around again.

Harry shook his head. "It's all right; give them to me," he answered, taking the arrows from his friend. Then he attached them one after the other to 

the wall and the book shelf with the Sticking Charm he had learned last week.

"Wow, cool," Neville said in awe. "Can you do wandless magic? I still can't do any magic at all."

"Only a bit," Harry replied uncomfortably. His teacher, Remus Lupin, had been teaching him easy Charms now for half a year and he had already learned a lot but… 'Oh, I shouldn't do magic in front of Neville or other kids; they don't understand that I do it without a wand,' Harry thought, blushing at the attention.

"All right, now we only need two signs one over there and another there." Neville thought aloud while pointing where they still needed signs, "and then the Easter Bunny won't be able to miss his food."

EASTEREGGS

In the meantime, Harry had drawn a picture of an Easter bunny and placed it beside his Easter basket. "Here, that's for the Easter bunny too," he said pleased and proudly glanced at the picture.

In Minerva's office, the teachers had thrown a Silencing Charm around themselves so that the children wouldn't hear their laughter. "Why does the Easter bunny need signs to find food that is placed on the table?" Filius Flitwick asked amused.

Minerva groaned as an answer, and Severus replied instead. "Normally, Harry doesn't make a mess; in fact, if Minerva didn't want people to know that he was there. Normally people wouldn't be able to tell Harry lived there just from looking around the living room, except whenever Neville is here. The two of them make such a mess that you can't put a foot into the living room. Harry never plays in his own room; he always wants to be close to Minerva, so the two of them don't either. Anyway, believe me, the Easter bunny does need the signs," he finished his explanation, smirking.

"And Severus told them that the Easter bunny wouldn't come if they didn't clean up, which they didn't. What are we going to do, Severus? Will the Easter bunny come?"

"What's the Easter bunny going to bring them?" Pomona Sprout asked curiously.

"He'll bring chocolate eggs and hide them, so that they have to search for them," Minerva answered, smiling in anticipation of her son's happy face.

"Maybe you could make him hide the eggs here in your office, leaving a note for them that the room was too untidy to hide eggs?" Pomona suggested.

"Or just leave a message, giving them a deadline to clean up and telling them that the Easter bunny would come once more tomorrow night?" Filius suggested.

Minerva shook her head. "No, but…"

"I know what I'm going to do," Severus interrupted his friend. "As I am the Easter bunny, I will do it like this: I will hide the eggs in the living room and then place a Charm on them so that they will stay invisible until the room is cleaned up to a certain level. Will that be agreeable?"

Everyone agreed to Severus' suggestion, and they adjourned their meeting since it was time to head to the Great Hall for dinner.

EASTEREGGS

Pomona and Filius left the office to head for dinner, while Minerva and Severus entered the living room just in time to hear Harry say eagerly, "Neville, we should go to bed straight after dinner so that the Easter bunny can come early."

"Yeah, that's right," Neville answered seriously. "The Easter bunny will only come when we're asleep."

Minerva and Severus had to try hard not to laugh at the signs leading through the room. "Now, it's time to go to the Great Hall for dinner," Minerva reminded the excited boys.

"Oh, Aunt Minerva, look, what we prepared for the Easter bunny," Harry shouted excitedly. "Do you think he will find the pumpkin juice and the carrots?"

"If he is able to read, then he will surely find his food," Severus replied, smirking. "However, as I told you, he will only come when you clean up your toys; he won't come to such a messy room."

Harry gave the teacher an anxious smile. 'Oh, dear Easter bunny, please come. See, I'm so tired now, I can't possibly clean up tonight,' he thought, hoping that the Easter bunny might hear him.

EASTEREGGS

After dinner, Severus and Poppy accompanied Minerva and the two boys back to Minerva's quarters, knowing that the two boys together were like a hurricane in contrast to the normally quiet boy Harry was when he was alone. "So, I heard something about you were going to bed at seven o'clock?" Minerva asked, glancing at the two boys.

"Um… eh… Ah, but I think I have changed my mind," Harry answered in a small voice. 'It's much too funny when Aunt Poppy and Uncle Severus are here as well, and maybe I can get a small glimpse of the Easter bunny,' Harry thought.

"No, I don't think so," Severus contradicted sternly. "You will take a bath and go to bed now."

"Look, the Easter bunny can come any time after it becomes dark, and it's already getting dark. When he sees that you're still awake, he'll probably go away," Poppy added.

The two boys grudgingly allowed Minerva to take them to the bathroom, while Severus showed Poppy the preparations the boys had made for the Easter bunny. When Harry and Neville were dried up and put to bed, Severus sat between their beds and told them a story about the Easter bunny before Minerva tucked them in, telling them once more they needed to fall to sleep quickly so that the Easter bunny could come.

Much too excited to sleep, Harry got up every fifteen minutes, making sure that the Easter bunny hadn't come yet. Slightly disappointed he made his way into the living room, where Minerva, Poppy, and Severus were drinking tea. "Aunt Minerva, do you think the Easter bunny likes pumpkin juice? Would it be better to put something else out too?"

"No, sweetie, I'm sure that he'll like pumpkin juice. Now, go to sleep, Harry," Minerva answered, giving the child a kiss on the forehead.

"All right, but I'll come every fifteen minutes to check if he was here, all right?"

"Okay, sweetie, do that," Poppy replied, chuckling, from her experience knowing that Harry would be fast asleep in ten minutes if not earlier.

Five minutes later, double snoring could be heard from Harry's room, and the three teachers grinned mischievously at each other. Thirty minutes later, Severus stood up and started to hide the chocolate eggs throughout the room, while the two women kept advising him where to put the next one. Finally, Severus placed a Charm on the eggs, so that they would only become visible when the room was cleaned up, while Minerva put a Charm on a small parchment that she put between the boys' two Easter baskets:

Dear Harry and Neville,

This room is too messy and too dangerous for me. I can hurt my legs when I try to move around. But I'll give you another chance, and I'll come back when you've cleaned up the room properly in an adequate time.

The Easter bunny

EASTEREGGS

Minerva woke up to a small figure climbing into her bed. "Aunt Minerva, it's horrible. The Easter bunny went away because he could get hurt in our mess, and he left a message we should clean up really good and quickly, but how do I know if it's already too late?"

Minerva had to try hard to hide a giggle and pulled the upset boy close. "It's all right, sweetie, I'm sure it will be quickly enough if you start cleaning up immediately. You have to clean up anyway if you want Aunt Poppy and Uncle Severus to come and eat the Easter cake together with us this afternoon."

"Ah, all right," Harry said, slightly consoled, and scrambled out of Minerva's bed to start cleaning the living room. When he was finished, Minerva and Neville were still sleeping. 'They are too lazy, but I'm bored and I'm getting hungry,' Harry thought, deciding to wake Neville up.

Neville was still tired and cranky that Harry had woke him up. "Why did you have to wake me up so early?" he mumbled after Harry, who hurried back into the living room.

"Because the Easter bunny was here!" Harry shouted back, looking in awe at the colourful chocolate eggs, while he ran around the room, trying to find all of them.

The End

The story is based on fact. Thanks to my sons for the inspiration ;-). A story graphic is on my newsgroup page. This one-shot fits into my story "Harry and the Stubborn Old Headmaster".

Thanks to Mushcorn for her brilliant and fast beta-ing!

All recognizable characters belong to J.K.Rowling, and I am not earning anything by writing this story.