Another Year of Christmas Disasters
Five: Eight Maids
Hermione was woken by high pitched screaming and raced down to the Common Room to investigate. She almost burst out laughing when she saw the Slytherin boys, and finally gave in when she realised it was Draco who was screaming.
"Oh, do shut up, Granger," Draco snapped, apparently regaining his composure. "It's not funny."
"On the contrary," Hermione refuted with a grin. "It's hilarious."
"That hurts, Hermione, right here," Theodore said, holding a hand over his heart dramatically. "Truly, you're breaking my heart."
Hermione rolled her eyes. "Yes, I'm sure I am." She took a moment to look around the rest of the room, and was amused to see that Justin was dressed identically to the Slytherins. "What happened to you four?" she asked, raising an eyebrow.
Justin shrugged, choosing to move closer to the fireplace where the rest of them were standing. "We woke up like this, and Malfoy started shrieking like a girl. The rest...well, you were here."
"Um..." The group of boys that had been sleeping in the Common Room and Hermione all turned towards the staircases, seeing Parvati and Padma standing there. "Why are you guys wearing French maid outfits?"
"Because they're on my elite Runespoor milking team," Harry explained from the edge of the forest.
Blaise and Theodore restrained Draco when he tried to leap for Harry's throat, and they all stared at him incredulously. Hermione shook her head wearily. Harry's outfit was the same as the other four boys, but in red (in deference, she imagined, to his absent Santa suit).
"Runespoor milking," Justin said flatly.
Harry nodded. "Yep!"
"Potter, you are so, so, so, so dead," Draco growled, straining against Blaise's arms.
Twin shrieks from upstairs, followed by shouts of Harry's name, seemed to echo Draco's statement. Moments later, Dean and Ron had stampeded down the stairs in the same maid outfits that Justin and the Slytherin boys were wearing and joined Draco in straining at Harry, held back by Justin, Parvati and Padma.
Hermione turned back to Harry. "Harry, you can't possibly be serious. None of you are qualified to milk any kinds of animals, let alone snakes!"
"I can milk cows," Dean said with a shrug, ceasing his struggle against the twins. Ron was still twitching against Justin's grip. "But a snake..."
"I'm a parselmouth," Harry pointed out, pouting a little. "That makes me a little qualified. Plus, you know, the Runespoor actually asked me to do this. Henry says he either needs milking or he's gonna have to bite someone. I mean, he could probably bite a rat or something, but he's testy, so I don't want to risk it."
Hannah, who had been halfway down the staircase, let out a squeak and turned back around. "See you all, uh, tomorrow!"
"Bye Hannah!" Justin called after her.
Dean, frowning, examined his fellow victims and Harry. "So I see where you're going with this...who's the last one?"
Harry shrugged. "How should I know? It's not like I picked in advance."
Everyone gave him a pointed, sceptical stare.
"Oh all right, so I did. But it's a surprise, and if Luna wakes up and finds me spoiling it she'll feed me to - well, it won't be pleasant, so shut up about it."
"I didn't say a word," Justin said innocently.
"I'm not your minion, Harry."
"Harry," Colin said from the stairs, "Why have you dressed my little brother in drag?"
Harry winced. "Um...I thought he'd look pretty?"
Colin and Dennis both stared down at him. Then Colin turned to regard Dennis. "You know...you're actually right."
"I'm sorry!" Colin said, holding up his hands defensively. "But Harry has a point - you do look really pretty."
"I don't know whether to kill you or kill Harry right now," Dennis sighed. He eyed the others. "At least I don't look as girly as Malfoy."
Draco twitched. "Girly?"
"Okay!" Harry shouted, suddenly seeming to sense the impending chaos. "I need those of you in maid outfits to come with me to the Christmas palm tree. Our milking equipment and the Runespoor await us."
"I don't want to," Theodore said. "I'll dust the Common Room instead, if you like? I mean, seeing as I'm dressed for it."
"Nooo...this is an eight man job! And the outfits are totally necessary, before any of you question me."
"I hate you, Harry," Ron stated. "Really and truly. You do terrible things to me, and then ask me to do worse things."
"Could be even worse than this, Ron. He could have us milking Acromantulas," Dean pointed out.
Ron shuddered. "Ew. Harry, if you ever do something like that to me, I'll disown you before you can say gingerbread."
"I'll keep that in mind when I'm planning the rest of our holidays."
"Sometimes you scare me, Harry."
"Only sometimes, Ron? I must be slipping."
Also known as the 'Wolfie Isn't Dead' chapter.
Wolfie was going to write thousands upon thousands of apologies here, followed by some grovelling, and much spouting of love. Er, but Wolfie just finished the last chapter of Fullmetal Alchemist and her adorable new cat Harvey is trying to eat her toes and netbook. So know that Wolfie feels all of the above. A lot.
If this chapter sucks, well, Wolfie's brain had been stolen by her cold when she wrote it. Cold is thankfully almost gone, and brain is almost entirely back. Almost.
Love and candy,