Tonks bounced down to breakfast the next morning, successfully making it down the stairs without tripping, easily avoiding the troll's foot umbrella stand and looking every bit as elegant as a ballerina as she entered the kitchen and swept around getting herself cereal and tea. Then, balancing everything carefully with a levitating charm, she made her way to the table where she set everything down without spilling a drop. It was a miracle, a one off, an event so rare that the sky should have caved in and the very fabric of space twisted itself inside out. Tonks was suddenly graceful!
"This morning can not get any better!" she said aloud, marveling at her own sudden skills.
But of course, she was wrong; the morning could indeed get better. An awful lot better, she thought as the door opened and a smiling Remus Lupin walked in wearing an old blue dressing gown over his pajamas and promptly strode over to kiss her and murmur good morning before fetching his own breakfast. A moment later and he was seated beside her, stifling a yawn and looking both very happy and also slightly bemused at how everything seemed to have worked out so perfectly for him.
"So, what's the plan for the day?" he asked. "Any terribly embarrassing tasks you are supposed to carry out?"
Tonks took a gulp of her tea and then drew from her pocket the very well worn and carefully folded piece of parchment that had the various tasks written down upon it. She scanned them before handing the parchment over to Remus who chuckled and shook his head with disbelief as he read through them all.
"So, today you have to attempt this painting of Alistor?" Remus asked and Tonks nodded.
"Is he around?"
Remus shrugged and folded the parchment back up, sliding it over to her.
"I have to admit, I wasn't really paying much attention to the whereabouts of anyone but you last night, so I've no idea whether he's here or not."
Tonks laughed and finished off her breakfast, sending everything over to the sink where it settled into the water without anything breaking. She noted Remus' eyebrows rose in surprise and gave him a playful thump on the arm.
"I am an Auror, remember. I can be very graceful when I want to be."
"Of course," Remus replied though Tonks gave him a pointed and disbelieving look.
"Oy mate, don't forget the other task I've got to do, I could very easily make that one horribly embarrassing for you," Tonks said, referring of course to the mistletoe task that Sirius had been pushing for her to get on with since day one of the tournament.
"After last night's impressive declaration Tonks, I doubt being kissed by you in front of everyone would be that embarrassing," Remus countered and Tonks begrudgingly had to agree with him. The two of them had successfully avoiding seeing any of the other Order members since the evening meal and Tonks was not looking forward to the inevitable comments and amused expressions. Or possibly a lecture from Moody.
"By the way," Remus said quietly as the kitchen door opened and Sirius stumbled bleary eyed into the room, "it says you've got to kiss three people. Any thoughts on who the other two lucky people will be?"
"Assuming you're one of the three," Tonks said and Remus smirked slightly
"I should hope so, yes."
Tonks grinned and considered telling him he wasn't for a moment, but then decided that she wouldn't be able to keep a straight face whilst lying.
"You're supposed to act horribly jealous by the way, not interested."
Remus raised his eyebrows and smiled at her as Sirius dropped with a heavy sigh into a chair opposite the two of them and summoned the bottle of hangover cure from the cupboard.
"Ahh, but, Tonks, I would assume you won't kiss the other two in quite the same manner as you kiss me, and therefore, they are the ones who should be very jealous."
Tonks couldn't fault his reasoning and quite liked the slightly smug look Remus wore at the thought that he was indeed the only one who could kiss her properly now.
"When you two are quite finished fawning over each other, I have a hangover and need sympathy," Sirius said in a loud voice.
"Shouldn't have drunk so much then," Tonks replied quickly as Remus cast Sirius an entirely unsympathetic look and rose from his seat to wash up the breakfast things.
"I was celebrating you two fools finally getting your act's together," Sirius muttered between hearty gulps of hangover cure.
As Tonks and Sirius continue to lazily argue over his consumption of fire whiskey, Mundungus entered the kitchen and grinned broadly when he saw Remus and Tonks.
"Alrigh' you two?" he said, winking in what he clearly intended to be a subtle way to Remus who rolled his eyes and sat back down at the kitchen table beside Tonks. "Everything going, err, well?"
"Yes thank you, Mundungus," Remus replied, glancing over at Tonks who was smirking and shaking her head as she thought about the fact that they were going to have to endure this level of conversation with everyone all day.
"Right', righ'" Mundungus said, and then he attempted to lean in closer to Tonks, dropping his voice to what he considered a whisper but was actually loud enough for Sirius to hear on the other side of the table. "Is, err, is he in a good mood?" 'Dung asked, jerking a thumb in Remus' direction. Remus pretended not to see and began reading the paper.
Tonks frowned at Mundungus and nodded.
"Good, good, only I was gonna have a go at that werewolf policies task. Just didn't wanna risk it if he was in a dodgy mood you know, I quite like having all my limbs attached."
Tonks sniggered and looked over at Remus whose expression was unreadable as he turned the page and continued to pretend not to be able to hear anything Mundungus was saying despite the fact that Sirius was trying to hide his laughter.
"Anythin', anythin' you know, interesting' in the paper today, Remus?" Mundungus asked in a complete failure of an attempt at an offhand voice.
Remus looked up and smiled slightly.
"Well, Mundungus that would depend upon what you find interesting wouldn't it?"
Mundungus looked a little confused and then shrugged.
"Yeah, probably, righ', righ'. I was just wonderin' if there was anymore stuff in there about those werewolf policies that toad woman Umbridge has been introducing."
Remus chuckled and shut the paper, tossing it across to Sirius who immediately flicked to the sports pages at the back to check the result of the Chudley Cannon's last game.
"No, there is nothing new in there about them," Remus assured him and leant back in his chair, looking across at Tonks with an amused expression. She grinned back at him and rolled her eyes as Mundungus ploughed on with his task.
"Shame, I think she could do with introducing some more you know," he said, looking across at Remus to gauge his reaction to this piece of news. Remus put on his best surprised face and 'Dung gulped a little before continuing. "Yeah, I reckon Umbridge has got the right idea about the furry creatures, they need sorting out you know."
"Really?" Remus said, his voice dropping a tone and carrying a slight warning note in it. "And what delightful policies would you suggest that Umbridge introduce next?"
Mundungus licked his lips nervously and glanced around at the other two for help; they were too busy stifling sniggers however to come to his rescue and so Mundungus continued to verbally dig a deeper hole for himself.
"I dunno, lock 'em all up, or keep 'em away from normal people."
Remus pretended, quite effectively it seemed from the way Mundungus was cowering, to look very offended, drawing his wand from his trouser pocket and brandishing it at Mundungus.
"Say that again, Mundungus, and I'll hex your nose to stick to a different part of your anatomy," he threatened. Mundungus gave a yelp and jumped up from the table, knocking his chair over backwards onto the flagstones.
"Sorry, sorry, didn' mean anything by it!" he muttered frantically, backing away a few paces and holding his hands out in front of him defensively. Remus seemed to consider this very hard, wand still pointing directly at Mundungus' nose, over which 'Dung now firmly clamped his hands.
"I don't want to hear another word about that issue from you ever again. Understood?"
Mundungus nodded frantically and then scuttled out of the room, tripping a number of times as he refused to turn his back on Remus for fear of being cursed.
When Mundungus had gone, Sirius collapsed into peels of laughter and Remus chuckled to himself, tucking his wand back into his pocket and grinning over at Tonks.
"Very impressive, almost had me fooled," she said and Remus looked rather pleased with himself.
It was some time later before Moody appeared, and in the interval Tonks had been around the house, hanging mistletoe above doorways and carefully considering who the other two people would be.
She was narrowing down the list considerably but was still little closer to figuring it out. She had however decided that for her own health it was bests that Mundungus was not one of the two, and if she did not want to be turned into a ferret, then it couldn't be Moody either. Kingsley was out of the question because she worked with him and it would be far too odd, Dumbledore was older than her grandfather, and resembled him far too much, so Tonks flatly refused to kiss him and she was definitely making sure the other person was male so that ruled out a number of Order members. Sirius had suggested himself, but had suddenly looked very worried when Tonks reminded him that they were in fact related, and Tonks had almost given up hope of thinking of two suitable candidates when Moody arrived to distract her from that task entirely.
She jumped up from her seat immediately to ask Moody whether he would mind having his portrait painted by her, but Bill surprisingly got there first and immediately launched into a long winded and not very believable story about Fleur enjoying dancing and he needing to learn very quickly.
"And well, none of the others can dance a step and Kingsley mentioned once that you used to be rather a good dancer, so I was wondering if you'd mind teaching me a few basic steps?" Bill finished, looking very nervous as Moody stood scowling in front of him, magical eye quivering in its socket as it stared at Bill. After a very long pause during which everyone considered placing shield charms around themselves just in case Moody started firing off curses, his features relaxed slightly and Bill breathed a visible sigh of relief.
"Well, I suppose I might be able to teach you a thing or two, so long as you pay perfect attention to what I'm saying."
Bill nodded vigorously and Moody seemed to contemplate something very hard before waving his wand in the direction of the old wizard wireless sat atop the kitchen table. It jumped into life with a crackle and then the room was filled with the sound of some rather old fashioned swing music. Tonks and Sirius rolled their eyes, but Remus looked rather impressed at Moody's taste and Tonks couldn't help laughing as he began tapping his foot in time with music.
"Right then lad, right foot first, no, other right," Moody barked and Bill jumped as he received a sharp tap on the head with Moody's wand and his legs began doing a jig of their own accord.
"That's it, turn to the left, LEFT!" Moody roared as Bill attempted to fight against his self dancing legs and wavered dangerously, very nearly toppling over. He found himself spinning on the spot and lurching towards Moody who grabbed his arms and held him steady.
"Follow me. Right, left, right, and turn . . ."
Bill winced as Moody's wooden leg connected sharply with his shin and then yelped when he stood on Moody's other foot and in retaliation Moody deliberately trod on Bill's foot.
Sirius was doubled up with laughter as Bill was swung this way and that around the kitchen trying desperately to keep his balance and stop his legs from getting tangled up, to little avail. After a good five minutes he found himself falling over backwards and sitting on the kitchen floor looking up at Moody who was berating him for his utter lack of gracefulness.
"I've seen trolls with more talent for dancing than you!" Moody grumbled as Bill scrambled to his feet, rubbing his sore behind and shuffling away from Moody quickly and into a seat.
"Right, thanks, I'll bear that in mind then," Bill said sarcastically.
When Tonks had gained control of her laughter and Moody was suitably calm enough to sit himself down at the kitchen table and delve into the now rather tatty looking Daily Prophet, Remus gave her a pointed look and she rolled her eyes, knowing that the time had come for her to attempt her penultimate task.
"Moody?" she said, careful not to let anything of her sudden apprehension show through in her voice as she considered just how painful in comparison to morphing turning into a ferret might well be.
Moody did not look up from the paper but gave a grunt to show he had heard and Tonks decided to just get it over with and hope that a good bottle of fire whiskey would be at hand to ease any bruises, or better yet, Remus to help with kissing things better.
Shaking her head to clear the thoughts that had suddenly entered it and suitably distracted her, Tonks ploughed on with the story she had concocted to explain her very odd request.
"I've got this assignment from the ministry, they wanted me to infiltrate a gang of criminals who've been making counterfeit paintings to help them with stealing the originals, you know, using them as look out. Anyway, I need to get some practice at painting, to err, try and understand how these people think, that was what Scrimgrouer suggested anyway -"
"Just hex them," Moody said gruffly, neither eye having left the paper he was scanning.
"Well I would, but this is Scrimgrouer we're talking about and he wants to see some proof that I've actually been practicing. So, I was wondering if you'd mind sitting for me whilst I painted a portrait of you."
Now Moody lowered his paper, staring at her with a piercing gaze, magical eye sweeping up and down over her and making Tonks feel faintly queasy. However she remained silent and smiled in what she hoped was a relaxed and faintly hopeful fashion.
"Why don't you paint Remus?" Moody asked eventually, glancing over at Lupin who was calmly sipping at his coffee and following the exchange with interest. "As you seem to be so fascinated by him."
"Because as of yet, Scrimgrouer has no idea that Remus and I know each other and it might raise questions if I turn up with a painting of a werewolf and a known friend of Sirius Black," Tonks said bluntly and Moody actually looked faintly impressed with her reasoning, though a little irritated that this hadn't gotten him off the hook.
"Well, Kingsley then," Moody suggested, looking back down at his paper as if he had just solved the problem.
"Kingsley isn't around, you are," Tonks countered and then, putting on her best innocent grin added, "plus, you have a very, erm, interesting face."
Remus sniggered into his coffee, though managed to hide it well. Bill and Sirius on the other hand burst out laughing and Moody shot daggers at them with his non magical eye which immediately made them shut up and look nervous.
"Interesting?" Moody said very slowly, staring at Tonks as she nodded vigorously. "I see. Well, what would this involve?"
"Not a lot, you'd just have to sit for me for a little bit whilst I painted," Tonks replied.
Moody considered this for a very long time, giving Tonks a mistrustful look as he remembered all the strange things that had been going on recently. However when he did finally answer it was a grudging yes.
"Excellent, well we'll get started straight away then shall we?" Tonks suggested, jumping up from her seat and rummaging around in the drawers for brushes. She summoned an old paint set from the library along with a rather dusty easel and set everything up in the kitchen. Once this was done she stood in front of the blank piece of paper and studied Moody over the top of it; he was looking irritated already.
"Remus, a word," Tonks said, nodding towards the kitchen door. Remus raised his eyebrows in question as he stood from his seat and followed her out, Tonks closing the door so the others wouldn't hear any conversation.
"I'm a useless painter, how am I supposed to make this look anything like Moody, and how on earth am I going to get akway with doing this?" she asked. Remus looked thoughtful for a moment, considering the other paintings in the hallway as if they might have a suggestion.
"Try a photographic charm, it'll make Alistor's image appear upon the paper," he said and Tonks nodded.
"Ok, but what about the woman's body, and before you say it, I am not using my own, that's just too strange."
Remus chuckled lightly.
"I wouldn't dream of suggesting it, Nymphadora," he said, then gestured to the closed curtains that covered the evil, shrieking image of Sirius' mother. "However, I'm sure a suitable substitute can be found."
Tonks' eyebrows shot upwards and she gaped at Remus who was grinning slightly and ducked his head in a very marauder like fashion.
"Are you suggesting what I think you are, Remus Lupin?" Tonks asked in disbelief and he shrugged.
"He will never forgive me," Tonks said, but grinned all the same. She pushed open the kitchen door and stepped back in, Remus following, and took up her place behind the easel again.
"Come on, I don't have all day," Moody said and Tonks began muttering the photographic charm, adding Moody's name into it and soon an image of his head began to appear on the page, black and white and slightly blurred at first, before becoming sharper, and then the colours appeared vividly. Then, with a final glance at Remus who smiled at her from the table where he was seated besides an avidly waiting Sirius, Tonks muttered the charm again, this time adding Mrs. Black's name into it.
All the while she waited for the charms to finish their work, Tonks made a great show of running the paintbrush over the paper and mixing colours, although of course she was not actually doing any painting herself, but she needed to keep Moody in the dark long enough for the image to assemble itself. When it was finally done, Tonks studied it with a kind of fascinated horror.
"Well?" Moody asked, noticing the sudden lack of activity on Tonks' part. "Is it done then?"
Tonks stood mute for a moment as she looked at the monstrosity that she had created. Sirius and Bill instantly sprang up from their seats to come and gawp at the painting, and indeed, their jaws did drop when they looked at it.
"I . . . what . . . arrrrrrrg!" Sirius said, mouth opening and closing, eyes wider than that of a house elf.
"I can't believe it," Bill said as Remus strolled over to take a look as well. "I can't believe it, I can't -"
"Alright, alright, it can't be all that bad!" Moody grumbled as he stood up, wooden leg clunking loudly on the flagstones and made his way around to the portrait. The air seemed to chill very suddenly as he set eyes on the painting and Tonks found herself ducking behind Remus, putting him between her and Moody.
Moody simply stared at the portrait in silence for a very long while, taking in the extremely worrying image of his head atop the old and evil body of Mrs Black. He stared and he stared and Tonks thought he must be considering the best curse to use upon her.
Then, very suddenly, Mad-Eye began to laugh.
Tonks, Sirius, Bill and Remus gaped at each other in disbelief. Were they actually hearing this or not?
But Moody's shoulders were shaking and he was roaring with laughter as he stared at Tonks' creation. Tonks, who was even more worried by this sudden out of character behaviour clutched at the back of Remus' robes and Sirius backed up a few paces.
"Very good Tonks, very good indeed!" Moody said as his laughter subsided, and then still chuckling to himself, he strode from the room, leaving the four of them to try to get their heads around what they had just seen.
"Where's the bottle of fire whiskey?" Sirius asked eventually, heading for the cupboards and summoning four very large glasses to fill.
It took quite some time for the four of them to get over Moody's unbelievably weird behaviour and they had gone over all sorts of theories trying to explain why he had not done as everyone had expected and simply blasted the painting to oblivion and turned Tonks into a particularly colourful ferret. Sirius had even gone so far as to suggest Moody had been drinking until Tonks pointed out that this would definitely be against his policy of constant vigilance.
Finding no suitable answer to the mystery, they had given up thinking about it and Tonks had gone back to worrying about her other task and who exactly she was intending to involve in it. She was definitely running out of options and people not in the know about the tournament were beginning to ask questions about the mistletoe that had suddenly sprung up around the house.
"Who on earth has been putting this stuff up?" Kingsley asked at lunchtime as he strode into the kitchen where Molly was cooking stew and jabbed a thumb at the mistletoe attached to the doorframe above him.
"For decorative purposes?" Tonks suggested meekly and Kingsley grinned at her, taking a seat at the table.
"More likely an excuse to snog Remus."
Tonks felt herself going red and glanced over at Remus who was reclining in the seat next to her and filling out the crossword, his feet resting on her chair. He looked up at Kingsley and gave the smirking man a good natured smile.
"Tonks has no need for excuses," he replied casually before returning his gaze to the paper and quickly filling out another column. Tonks grinned at him gratefully and he glanced up, momentarily catching her eye and returning the smile.
Kingsley continued smirking at Tonks, enjoying teasing his young colleague.
"Alright then, nice to know you two have finally got together, but that still doesn't explain the mistletoe everywhere a good few months out of season."
"Oh I don't know, I just felt like it," Tonks said, thinking that this was probably the worst explanation ever. However, considering he was talking to the young witch who liked to sport pink hair and routinely change her nose into the shape of various animals', Kingsley actually seemed to think this an acceptable answer.
Tonks lapsed back into musing over suitable candidates. The idea she had fixed in her mind was that they needed to be two people with whom she could pass it off as being a completely innocent kiss, nothing that could possibly be misinterpreted by anyone. Which was why she had already ruled Bill out. Molly was sure to start making awkward comments and Tonks had given Remus the wrong idea about her and Bill once before already, although she doubted that he could possibly is worried now after everything that had happened since her veritaserum fuelled admission.
Tonks sighed irritably and shuffled in her seat absentmindedly as she considered her choices. Her fidgeting caused Remus to look up distractedly from his crossword with an inquiring expression and she nodded her head slightly towards the mistletoe to indicate her dilemma. Remus merely adopted a mild smile and shrugged slightly, indicating that he had little help to offer. Tonks sighed heavily again and thought that it would probably have been quite odd if he was jumping to her rescue with answers anyway and went back to thinking and watching Molly chopping vegetables for her stew whilst she waited for Arthur to come back from work at the ministry on his lunch break.
When Arthur did in fact appear some ten minutes later, he was not alone and Tonks leapt up from her seat and rushed to the doorway with a grin to great the new arrival.
Charlie Weasley laughed as Tonks pulled him into a bear hug and gave him a (very hasty) kiss.
"Wow Charlie, haven't seen you in ages!" Tonks said as she let go of the grinning, red headed young man and walked with him back to the kitchen table where Molly was now serving up lunch and chatting with Arthur. Tonks sat beside Remus, who nudged her leg with his sock covered toe as she sat down and gave her a smirk over his paper. She returned the expression and held up three fingers on her hand, letting one drop to indicate that was one kiss off her list. Remus rolled his eyes and returned to the crossword.
"I've been in Romania with the dragons," Charlie explained. "Dumbledore's a little concerned that the death eaters will be looking to swell the ranks with a few of the horntails we've been keeping an eye on out there, and you can imagine how dangerous a dragon in their control would be."
Tonks nodded agreement and noticed Molly shudder slightly at the thought of fire breathing beasts descending upon them all. But Charlie gave her a hearty hug and soon she was pestering him with a range of questions from, was he keeping safe with all those dragons around too how many times a week was he washing his hair? Charlie took her grilling in his practiced stride and Molly did not seem to think it odd in the slightest that Tonks had greeted an old school friend in such an exuberant fashion.
After lunch, Tonks and Remus headed to the library to do some research for the Order and Sirius wandered off upstairs to amuse himself with the Snape's face dart board. The others had returned to work and Molly was busy giving Charlie a tour of the house. Sirius had started off helping out with this, but his sarcastic comments had eventually got on Mrs Weasley's nerves so much that she had sent him away with a few choice words of her own. The afternoon passed quietly and in fact, Tonks became so absorbed with her research and chatting away to Remus that she all but forgot about her final task. And so, when evening rolled around and Order members started arriving for the meal, she somewhat panicked as she realised it was now or never.
She followed Remus from the library and towards the kitchen, Sirius joining them in the hallway and giving her a very significant look as the front door opened and three more Order members appeared. They were Hestia Jones, Emmeline Vance and Dedalus Diggle.
"Right, here's the deal you two," she said, grabbing both Sirius and Remus and hurriedly explaining a plan to them to try to explain away to the others the ridiculously embarrassing thing she was going to have to do next. Sirius was struggling not to burst out laughing at the look of horror on Tonks face as she watched Dedalus and the others approach the mistletoe that had been strategically hung from the chandelier in the centre of the ceiling in the hallway where they all stood.
"The things I do for your amusement cousin," Tonks said to Sirius, grimacing as she strode forward, fixing a toothy grin on her face as she approached the three older Order members and grabbed them all, pulling them into a massive hug.
"Wow you guys! I'm so glad you're here!" she said in her most enthusiastic, over the top happy voice, and planted a kiss on Dedalus who looked both extremely surprised and extremely confused, as did Hestia and Emmeline when Tonks finally released the three of them.
"What the -" Dedalus began, until Sirius and Remus hurried over, Remus placing an arm around Tonks and smiling at the very confused people in front of him.
"Not to worry, Tonks was attacked by a particularly interesting piece of Black furniture earlier whilst we were cleaning out the attic."
"It's having adverse affects on her," Sirius added, "we think it might have been cursed, but Moody assures us its nothing that bad, should wear off soon."
"Until then I'm afraid Tonks will be a little over friendly," Remus finished, glancing down at Tonks who was beaming at everyone still.
"I see," Emmeline said, eyeing Tonks warily and giving her a wide berth as she continued on her way to the kitchen, muttering to Hestia who was shaking her head and Dedalus who was still looking slightly shocked. As soon as they were gone, Tonks let the grin drop from her face.
"I don't know which one of them it was, but they were wearing Gilderoy Lockhart branded perfume and it was awful!" she said, feeling Remus' body shake slightly as he chuckled, arm still around her. "You two were good with the story though," she added.
"Of course, it's all those years of having to cover for ourselves when McGonagall or another teacher caught us up to no good," Sirius said quickly. Then the mock look of modesty upon his face was replaced by a wide grin. "So Tonks, one kiss left, then the tournament's over and we can add up the scores."
She rolled her eyes and gave Sirius a thump on the arm.
"Right, right, I hadn't forgotten."
"Neither had I," Remus muttered, glancing pointedly at the still grinning Sirius.
"That was your cue to hop it, Sirius," Tonks added and Sirius gave a barking laugh before turning on his heel and heading for the kitchen door from behind which the inviting smell of supper was coming, accompanied by loud, friendly chatter.
"Alright then, thirty points in your column it is," he said with a final grin to the two of them as he opened the kitchen door and disappeared inside.
"Well, this has been a very long and decidedly odd day," Remus said, letting his hands rest against Tonks' back, holding her a little closer to him. Despite his words he was smiling cheerfully at her and Tonks grinned back.
"What else do you expect when staying in this house?" she asked and Remus' smile grew.
"A very good point indeed, dear Nymphadora." He paused in order to push a strand of hair, (electric blue now, though it had started out pink this morning), behind her ear. "So, I have one very important question to ask you. Do I get my kiss under the mistletoe now?"
"You dope," Tonks said, laughing as she rose up on her toes, "you don't need to wait for mistletoe."
Tonks was still smiling when she kissed him and Remus could feel the curve of her mouth as their lips met and she pressed closer against him, wrapping her arms around his neck. When they drew back eventually the grin seemed to have spread even further and she almost looked on the verge of laughter.
"Does something about my kissing style amuse you, Nymphadora?" Remus asked with mock seriousness, and she sniggered, allowing her arms to drop from around his neck. They began to walk at a leisurely pace towards the kitchen whilst she answered him.
"Of course not," she replied, "just this whole thing is quite funny really, the fact that it took these entire ridiculous, embarrassing tasks and the complete lack of maturity of me and Sirius to actually get you and I together. I'd have thought it would have put you off."
Remus chuckled as he held the door open for her and they stepped into the warmth of the kitchen.
"You're forgetting the marauder in me," he said, grinning at her as Sirius whistled at them when they entered the room. Tonks couldn't help but laugh despite fighting the urge to roll her eyes at him.
"So, we have all completed to the best of our abilities the tasks set. There have been a number of spectacular failures, an even larger number of bruises -"
"Ha!" Mundungus said sarcastically, interrupting Sirius' little speech. He along with Bill and Tonks was sat in the library watching Sirius stride up and down, the parchment with the scores written upon it clutched in his hand.
"Some highly embarrassing moments," Sirius continued, ignoring the interruption, "a lot of laughs and a few kisses I'm sure."
He grinned at Tonks who threw a cushion at him but smiled all the same.
"And now," Sirius said in a dramatic voice as he opened up the parchment with a flourish, "it is time to announce the winner of the Grimmauld place games. In last place, with a measly two hundred and thirty two points, is Mundungus Fletcher. 'Dung, for being such a complete loser, you win the booby prise."
Sirius waved his wand and a bucket leapt up from behind the sofa and pelted towards Mundungus. It tipped upside down over his head and just as Bill and Tonks leapt up, doused him in sewage slug slime. Mundungus screamed and began hopping around the room as he jabbed at parts of his cloak with his wand, yelling cleaning spells. The others laughed appreciatively as Sirius continued reading the final scores.
"In third place, is Mr. Bill Weasley" Sirius said, noting her glare and grinning mischievously. "Bill, you managed to rack up three hundred and thirty seven points and as such win a bar of honey dukes best!"
Bill rolled his eyes as he caught the large bar that Sirius drew from his pocket and threw in his direction.
"In second place, on an impressive, but not quite good enough three hundred and sixty points we have, my cousin Nymphado- sorry Tonks" Sirius yelled. "For coming second, Tonks here wins this lovely bottle of wine my parents have been letting mature in the cellar. Drink it in the knowledge that they'd probably kill me if they knew I was handing their best stuff out to blood traitors and please toast to the winner. The wonderful, the handsome, the impeccably well dressed -"
"Get on with it!" Mundungus yelled, which earned him another bucket full of slime over the head.
"The magnificent, Mr. Sirius Black with four hundred and two points! Mr. Sirius Black wins the bottle of fire whiskey he's been keeping specially and the right to not have it stolen off him even when you lot decide you'd quite like a night cap as well. I also win your undying respect and the title of Marauder extraordinaire!"
Tonks broke out into peels of laughter as with an impressive and complicated bit of transfiguration, Sirius turned his clothes into a royal cape and perched a crown atop his head. She and Bill clapped as the winner of the Grimmauld place games bowed low and then straightened up grinning at them all.
After all the ridiculous things Tonks had endured, all the horribly embarrassing moments, she felt that every second was worth it to have made Sirius this cheerful again and his time in Grimmauld place that little bit easier to bear. The fact that she now had Remus to kiss her and her tell her that he loved her didn't hurt either, she thought, grinning as Sirius bowed low once more, the cheeky, marauder grin plastered to his face.
A/N: Ok folks this is the last chapter! Hope you all enjoyed. In case you couldn't read the final scores here they are.
1st: Sirius with 402 points
2nd: Tonks with 360 points
3rd: Bill with 337 points
Last: Mundungus with 232 points