Disclaimer: Not bloody mine.
FanFic 100 Challenge – 034 – Not enough
After a long time thinking about this, I've decided that we can't go on like this. I can't go on like this. None of this is your fault, though.
You had been my best friend for decades, and you are the only man I've ever truly loved. But, Albus, I've realized that I'm not the woman for you. You deserve so much more, things I cannot provide you. You are the most powerful wizard of our age, and you deserve someone who can meet this standard. And a Transfigurations Professor doesn't. We both know that, as well as the whole wizarding world. I want you to be happy, and with me that would be very unlikely.
To make things easier, I'm moving to France. I've been offered a job at Beauxbatons, and have been requested to start as soon as possible. But I'll never be able to forget you.
However way our stories end, I know you have rewritten mine. I can only hope that I've left my mark on yours too.
With my undying love,
Minerva sighed and put her quill aside. No matter how many times she wrote it, the letter still seemed plain and cold. She grabbed the piece of parchment, made a ball out of it and added it to the growing pile on the floor near her desk. She put her head in her hands, and thought about what would be the results of her decision. Surely Albus would be hurt, and she hated to think about that, but he would soon recover and find someone that deserved him. It pained her that she wouldn't be able to spend the rest of her life with him, as she planned, but she wanted him to be not only happy, but the happiest man in the world. And being happy in a relationship with her, with the whole wizarding world gossiping about how Minerva wasn't enough for a man like Albus, was nearly impossible. She had always seen Dumbledore as her best friend and the man she'd secretly loved for years, but since they admitted their feelings to each other, she had realized that things wouldn't be as easy as she thought.
Stretching out, Minerva took her spectacles and folded them, leaving them on top of her desk while standing up and entering her private chambers. She would work on the letter later, for she wasn't on the mood for it right now. Minerva knew she was running out of time, since she had to leave for France in two days, but she couldn't write anything more today, she couldn't even think about anything more today. And there was always the option of telling him, face to face. That would hurt her even deeper, and she knew she was too much of a coward to see the pain that would probably flash in his eyes.
Passing her bed, she spotted a single white rose on top of her pillow. Albus, she thought. Oh, the man was always making her insides melt with even the smallest of things. Taking the rose and bringing it to her face to smell it, Minerva felt tears welling up in her eyes. Probably the last rose I'll get from him… Fighting the tears that were threatening to fall, Minerva left the rose on the same spot she had found it, and headed to her bathroom. All she needed now was a long bath, to wash all her worries away.
Meanwhile, back on her office, an excited Albus holding a magazine knocked on her door, and receiving no answer, opened the door. The sight that met him was one of a usually tidy office completely devastated by piece of parchments thrown everywhere: Little parchment balls on the floor, on her desk, near the fireplace, some tear pieces leading the way to her chambers… Albus smiled to himself. This was very unlikely Minerva, to leave her office like this. It was truly a mess. Deciding he would surprise her, he quickly waved his wand and had all the parchment pieces in a tidy pile on her desk. Not knowing which ones she would like to keep (considering the state of the parchments, none of them, but he wouldn't risk being at the end of Minerva's rage), he proceed to sit at her desk and read the notes. Probably she would have hexed him if she knew he had been reading her private notes, but Albus couldn't help himself. He was curious by nature.
Dear Albus, that was the only thing the first one contained, as well as some wet spots that could only be tears. That made him even more curious. She was writing a letter to him, but why was she crying? That made no sense at all. He scanned through other pieces of parchment, some with only a few words written, others with nothing at all (aside from stains of tears), and he even found one with a beautifully drawn tabby cat and a phoenix. He smiled, that was so like Minerva. He finally reached a parchment that had more than a couple of words in it. In fact, it was much longer than the others, and it seemed to be finished. He started reading, and the smile he had upon his face faded as quickly as would a burnt lamp.
Minerva wrapped the towel around her and entered her bedroom to change. The bath had not had the desired effect: put her thoughts aside. Instead, her mind was working in full speed now. She couldn't tell Albus she was leaving, but she couldn't leave without telling him first. She didn't what would be worse: see him hurting or go away and never know if he hurt at all.
Fully dressed and working on putting her hair into its customary bun, Minerva's head jerked up. Her feline senses told her someone was in her office, someone that hadn't been invited in. Grabbing her wand that laid on her vanity, she rushed inside the other room to find out the occupant of it was also the occupant of her thoughts, Albus Dumbledore.
"Albus" she smiled, putting her wand down.
He looked at her with teary eyes, and she saw what he was holding. Her face fell; he wasn't supposed to find out this way.
"Albus, I…" she started, but he cut her off.
"Minerva, is this true?" he asked "Are you leaving?"
She breathed deeply. It was now or never, she had chosen this, she couldn't back out now.
"Yes" she answered, hoping he hadn't heard her.
"Why?" it was the only thing that escaped his lips.
"I think I explained it all in the letter" her face was facing the floor. All she wanted to do was end this as quickly as possible.
"Do you expect me to believe this? I want the truth, Minerva"
"This is the truth, Albus"
"You're leaving because you do not, how it is?", he glanced down at the letter again "Oh, yes, you do not meet my standards. Is that so?"
She didn't answer him; she couldn't even open her mouth, let alone try to make any sounds.
"That does not make sense" his words were very softly spoken.
"It makes perfect sense for me", she replied shyly.
"No, it can't possibly do. We love each other, Minerva."
"That is not enough"
"Of course it is!" he stood up.
"Albus, you're the most powerful…"
"…Wizard of our age! I bloody well know that!" Minerva flinched at the sound of his voice. She had never seen Albus like this. Well, but she had never told him she was leaving either. "And what's the problem with that?"
"Think for a minute, Albus! The most powerful wizard and a Transfiguration Professor. What does it look like?"
"For me, it looks like two people simply fell in love and decided that life is too short to worry about what other people think!"
The look on Minerva's face told him that she was not convinced. But he was willing to do whatever it takes to keep Minerva by his side. Suddenly remembering why he had come to her office in the first place, he grabbed the magazine he had brought with him and scanned through it to find the page he was looking for. With a triumphant smile, he showed the magazine to her.
"Read this and tell me that you still have any reasons to leave"
Grabbing the magazine from his hands, Minerva realized it was an exemplar of the Weekly Witch. She didn't know Albus read such things, but she proceed to read the article anyway. It wasn't exactly an article; it seemed more like a poll, and the magazine was delivering it result.
For many years now, Albus Dumbledore has been considered the most powerful wizard of our age. But who do you think is the most powerful witch of our age?
1. Minerva McGonagall …………………………… 76 of the votes
2. Amelia Bones ……………………………………… 10 of the votes
3. Agrippa ……………………………………………… 9 of the votes
4. Charity Cleveland………………………………… 5 of the votes
Minerva McGonagall is currently the Transfiguration Professor at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Deputy Headmistress and Head of Gryffindor. She's also a former Auror and the youngest registered animagi, having first transformed into a cat with only seventeen years old. Having graduated from Hogwarts with honors in almost every subject, Miss McGonagall started studying for being an Auror, and, instead of the three years necessary to complete the curse, she was nominated an Auror only two years later. She fought beside Albus Dumbledore on the war against Grindewald.
"Albus, please. This is just what people think, not…"
"And the reason you're leaving isn't what people think?"
"Well, yes, but…"
"No buts, Minerva. The whole wizarding world thinks you are the most powerful witch."
"Nonsense. Most of the people who voted are probably my former students."
"Exactly. They learned with you, they spent seven years going to your Transfiguration classes. They know what you're capable of"
"You didn't make that up, did you? This poll?"
"You think I would do that?"
He chuckled. "Well, my dear, it seems the world finally realized what I've been telling you for years."
Minerva looked away. She was confused.
"You're still leaving?" he asked.
"Minerva, listen to me." He said, lifting her chin to force her to look at him. When she did, he continued. "I want you to stay not because of what they said in this magazine. I want you to stay because I cannot picture my life without you by my side. What you do not realize it's that it had not been for you, I would have never defeated Grindewald." When she made an attempt to protest, he held up a hand to silence her "You were beside me while I searched for him, you helped planning every move, you risked your life many times spying… You're as important for the wizarding world as you are for me, but on a different ground. I need you to be my best friend, my reason, my 'better half', as they say." He smiled. "Please, don't go. What's the point? You know I could never love another the way I love you. It would only make us both miserable."
He looked into her eyes and knew she was close to giving up. He closed the distance between them and kissed her, softly and shortly.
"I love you. I don't care what other people think, that will never change what I feel for you. Min, think with your heart this time. Let your mind rest."
She didn't. Because even inside of her mind, she knew they belonged together. The Headmaster and the Transfiguration Professor? No. As the kiss grew passionate, they were simply Albus and Minerva, a man and a woman who knew that love could move mountains and break down barriers.
"We should go. We're gonna be late." Minerva said when they pulled back.
"You're right, as always. See why I can't live without you? I would forget all the Ministry meetings"
She smiled as he offered his arm, which she gladly took.
"You're not leaving, are you?"
"Never" she said shyly, and reached up to kiss his cheek.
As they left her office and walked up to his to meet the Minister, they were Albus Dumbledore and Minerva McGonagall, the Headmaster and the Deputy, the most powerful wizard and witch of our age.
A.N.: Okay. That was a not so very good one. I keep getting this feeling that it could be better… I started writing this fic ages ago, and if it weren't for Rafa and his wonderful ideas, I would not have finished this. I also had a little help from 'Wicked The Musical' .Anyway, tell me what you think of it.