Summary: Albus and Minerva celebrate a traditional holiday.
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 errors. This story is based of a challenge in the challenge tag section of the ADMM board.
Minerva McGonagall threw her door open at three o'clock in the morning New Year 's Day, terror covering her face. "Albus, what happened! What's wrong?" Then, she saw how he was dressed.
Albus was wearing all green tartan and carrying some kind of parcel. He also sported a wide grin.
"Albus, what are you doing?"
"First Footings," he answered. "The first person to cross a threshold on the New Year in Scottish tradition determines the luck for the year. I brought all the right things… salt and coal and whiskey… and"
"Albus, what have you done to your hair!" It was jet-black, and his beard too.
"Light haired men are unlucky in Scottish first footings." He replied, totally unfazed.
She yawned, "Come in," she told him grudgingly.
She had not been sleeping, Albus realized. Her bed was neatly made.
Give me that, "She told him icily," taking the whiskey bottle and pouring herself a generous glass. She swallowed so quickly that her eyes watered.
Albus raised his eyebrows. "Minerva, have you had anything else to drink tonight?"
"I don't drink alone!" She snapped, "Else I'd drink myself to death." She poured herself another glass "What did you really want."
"To… to celebrate with you."
She laughed. He did not react. She downed another glass. "Minerva, what's wrong."
She looked up at him cautiously, "What do you mean."
"You lash out and drink like this when you're hurting."
"Send me to Poppy if you doubt my health."
"Not like that Minerva," he touched his chest, "Hurting in here."
After a moment, she shook her head. "I'm sorry," she whispered. "You went out of your way for me and I…"
"It's alright Minerva," He answered softly.
"Where did you get the information for first footings anyway?" Minerva asked, hoping to lighten the mood.
"Wikipedia," He answered.
"What?" She questioned, not really interested.
"It's this fabulous muggle invention. Ms. Granger showed me how to…" He saw he had lost Minerva's attention. "What is it?"
"Do you know what I miss the most about Scotland? The scent of the moor. Even in winter, it smelled so sweet."
"Let's go there."
"Albus we can't…"
"Well, why not. We'll walk to the edge of the grounds and apparate to…"
"Albus the only proper way to get to Scotland is to fly."
"You can't fly," He said firmly, "You've been drinking."
"I'll go with you on your broom, and you can steer."
He thought for a moment, "I'll give you a moment to get some warm clothing."
They dismounted in a land of winter blue. A moor covered in ice and wreathed in darkness.
"I was born here." She whispered, "In that cottage" she pointed into the distance "Where those lights are." She fell silent and breathed deeply, her breath making white wreaths in the night air. She felt home, and it hurt, to know she had no family here anymore. She missed it, but there was nothing to return to.
After forever, she spoke again, "They died on this moor too. And they never knew where I had gone. Never believed the letter, never believed the magic. They thought I'd just run away from here and they carried on, lived and died on this moor." She turned to Albus, "Let's sit." She transfigured a small pebble into a wooden bench.
Albus sat next to her, not wanting to interrupt her reverie, but his teeth chattered despite his best attempts. "It's cold." He muttered apologetically.
"Have some whisky," She answered, conjuring the bottle. He gulped at the liquid, eager for the warmth. She twisted her head to him, and he could feel her warm breath on his face. "Why de ye not build a fire?" She asked her accent unusually strong.
Albus felt Minerva take another breath, and then another, feeling a tingling sensation as her warm breath condensed onto his beard. He could not seem to think, "Uh, there's no wood." He managed.
She laughed "Are ye a wizard or no, Albus Dumbledore!"
Hours later, by a warm golden fire, Albus regretfully stood. "We'd better return to the castle, my dear."
"Ye can't fly" She retorted, "You've been drinking."
"You planned this?" He asked. She did not deny it.
She kissed him lightly on the lips, and then withdrew, looking nervously at him. "Ye look fetching in tartan." She moved to kiss him again.
Reluctantly, Albus stopped her, "You would regret this in the morning Minerva."
"Don't ye try to tell me what I'll regret!" A look of fear came over her eyes, "Would ye regret it?" she asked, vulnerable and afraid.
"No," He replied instantly, "Why Minerva?" he asked her gently.
"Please," she answered, "Don't make me cheapen it by saying it."
Arms wrapped and lips met. He was gentle, as if she were glass. She was fierce, and her fingernails cut. They did not regret it in the morning.
A/N: I really did get my info from Wikipedia, so I apologize for any inaccuracies.