Summary: Minerva wants to join the order of the Phoenix. How can she prove herself? ADMM.
Disclaimer: I have no rights to Harry Potter. This story is written merely for recreational purposes and no copyright infringement is intended. I apologize for any unintended mistakes. I have used the lexicon as a resource, particularly for the questions in the third test and order members, and I am grateful to it for helping me get my story straight. This is an ADMM story. If you do not like the pairing, do not bother with it. Also, parts of this are somewhat cliché. Ye be warned.
"Your final test" Moody announced to Minerva, at nearly midnight, "The mirror of Erised."
'What do I have to do?" Asked Minerva
"You stand in front of the mirror. It's charmed to project whatever you see on the wall over there" Moody gestured, "You'll see whatever it is you want most in the world, and so will we. It's to make sure we know what kind of ulterior motives you might have. We should have gotten most of the truly deplorable ones during the swearing in, but we can't take any chances..."
Minerva did not like the idea. No, this had to be the worst of all the tests. She had looked into the mirror before, and she knew exactly what was prone to appear in that projection. She also knew that she would be completely mortified. She had been sneaking away to look at the mirror where it was hidden, every now and again for years now. The mirror always showed her with Albus in a… well… inappropriate position. Mind, he was always looking adoringly at her and whispering that he loved her, but she doubted that was what her audience would focus on. The mirror had been showing that to her for nearly two decades now. It had been a quiet unfulfilled wish, harmless to everyone but her. Minerva knew that she wanted nothing in the world more than for Albus to love her… and yes, the rest of it too. But to have everyone see it just would not do.
Minerva blocked out whatever the rest of Moody's speech was and set herself to frantically thinking. How could she stop this? She could pull Moody aside and ask him look at the projection himself instead of showing the order. No, that wouldn't work. Moody would instantly distrust it, and the Order members would resent her for keeping secrets. She couldn't refuse. This task was important, more important than anything she might want, even this. But, this was horrible. Half the Order members were her former students. She couldn't have her students seeing this. The very thought made her shudder. Albus would hate her, and the Order would never respect her.
"Minerva" Moody said sharply, "Are you refusing?"
"No," she whispered, shaking her head.
"Then go stand in front of the mirror," he ordered impatiently.
Minerva stood in front of the mirror, watching helplessly the image she had known she would see. She heard the Order gasp in surprise when they saw. She heard whispers and giggles. She flushed red and closed her eyes, but it seemed to have no effect on the projection. No matter how hard Minerva tried to ignore the catcalls, she couldn't help feeling that her life was ending. When she could take no more she stepped away from the mirror.
"Have you seen enough?" She asked desperately, her voice was hoarse, and her eyes burned with unshed tears.
"Yes, I think we have. Congratulations, you pass. You're an Order Member" Moody said levelly.
Minerva nodded, "thank you very much" she said. Before she could lose her composure, she turned and strode out of the room.
"Wow," Lupin said, when Minerva had left, "I wasn't expecting that."
"I think I'm going to be scarred for life." Suggested James Potter, good-humouredly.
Peter Pettigrew shuddered. Albus seemed frozen on the spot, not moving, speaking, or blinking. In fact, it was questionable as to whether he was even breathing.
"Oh dear," Lily Potter whispered worriedly, "That wasn't good."
"It was hilarious" Sirius Black contradicted her.
"No, I mean she must be feeling horrible." Lily clarified
"Well, what do you want me to do about it? I can't just forget about it. I wish I could forget about what I saw." James retorted defensively.
Lily shook her head, "I'm going to go talk to her."
"Professor?" Lily called gently outside the door of the upstairs closet. "Professor may I come in?'
The door swung open in answer, but Minerva said nothing. Lily entered and saw Minerva sitting next to the brooms and mop, with her head in her hands.
"Professor," Lily said putting a gentle hand on Minerva's shoulder, "It's going to be alright." She wished she knew what to say. She had never had a gift for words, but it was hurting her to see her former teacher so upset.
"Lily, what am I going to do?" Minerva whispered in a broken voice.
"They'll forget about it" Lily answered, hoping desperately that it was the right thing to say. "They're all worked up now because…well… they're guys. Tomorrow it'll be something else."
"Albus must hate me" Minerva whimpered.
This gave Lily pause. "What made you think Professor Dumbledore will hate you?"
"Didn't you see?" Minerva asked miserably.
"Oh, well, that's just the thing, professor. You weren't with us when he looked into the Mirror of Erised."
Minerva looked up sharply "What do you mean?"
"Well, his was almost the exact same scene."
"Lily" Minerva asked in disbelief, "Are you joking?"
"No I'm not" Lily said firmly. Then she suggested lightly, wheedling, "I think you should go talk to him."
When Minerva reached the bottom of the stairs, Albus was waiting for her.
"Minerva" he said. She looked away. "Minerva, I would really like to try and court you. I've wanted to ask you for some time and…"
"Albus Dumbledore, are you playing with my feelings?" Minerva asked.
"I have nothing but good intentions. You're a remarkable woman and…" Albus told her, desperate to show her that he liked her as a person. If Minerva felt hurt by him, he didn't know what he would do.
"If after seeing that you aren't trying to take advantage of me, you must be the noblest man on earth." She remarked.
"I'll try if it means you'll go to dinner with me." Albus said sincerely.
"When?" Minerva asked innocently.
"Tomorrow at seven?" Albus suggested.
"I'm just guessing," Minerva said, "But I'll probably still be recovering from tonight's tests tomorrow. How about Sunday?"
"Seven o'clock?" Albus asked, hardly daring to believe.
"Yes." Minerva replied. Then, impishly, she winked at him.
Albus walked out the door, then jumped in the air and yelled, "Yes!"