LbN: Written for NRC's "New Horizons" challenge. Prompts were China, and "Going to see a game".
Tonks yawned and put her book back on the shelf. The bus's small library was a bit too cozy, and she could feel herself nodding off. She walked through the sleeper area and into the kitchen, where her husband was busy cultivating his cooking skills. Without a word, she sat down to watch. It would be interesting.
There were other people there, of course. The team and a couple of managers were all relaxing in the spacious kitchen. Any person passing on the street would've thought it was impossible for such an ordinary looking bus to have an Iron Chef worthy kitchen (among other things), but it did. The Dublin Destroyers' bus was a replica of the Knight Bus, which meant a bit more luxury for its inhabitants.
"What's your husband making us for supper?" Mickey Johnstone, a Chaser, asked.
"No idea," Tonks said. "I just came out." She watched, smiling, as Harry flipped through the pages of a cookbook.
Tonks loved being on the road with the team, even though it usually meant a lot of work. There had been a upswing in cases of Dark Magic at Quidditch games, which had led to teams having a couple of Aurors with them at all times. In this case, Tonks and Harry weren't actually working. They were just going to watch, but the team let them share the bus anyway. They'd been on the road with them for most of the year, after all. Following them to China had been Harry's idea, but Tonks had agreed right off. She loved traveling out of the country, and as for Harry…well, he'd been on an international cuisine kick every since they finalized the trip.
"Harry, what are you making?" the team manager asked, finally.
"I'm making dim sum. And yes, there's enough for everybody."
There were shouts of joy and applause at this. Normally Harry was an excellent cook.
A column of purple flames shot up as Harry's creation, literally, went up in smoke. After some creative swearing, he cleared the mess away and went to tell the driver that they'd need to stop for food, after all.
The day was clear and crisp when they finally made it to Beijing. Everyone was ready to be off of the bus by then, and they all agreed to explore the market place after getting settled in at the hotel.
Harry, longing for real Chinese food, was the first ready. He hurried Tonks along as they made their way down the stairs and into the street. "This is going to be brilliant," he said. "I've never seen a Quidditch match in another country."
"It's just like Quidditch in England, only with different flags," Tonks said with a chuckle.
Harry just smiled and took her hand as they waited for the rest of the team to come down.
The courtyard was a madhouse. Dozens of food stalls lined the place, and the tables and grass were covered with people enjoying their lunches. Due to a stroke of luck, Tonks managed to snag a table that would fit about half of the team. The rest of the players assured her that they were more than comfortable on the ground. "Harry…really?" she said, as her husband sat down across from her. There were about ten different dishes on his small tray. "I thought I married Harry Potter, not Ron Weasley," she commented with a grin.
"Hey now," Harry said.
"What is all that?"
"Tomatoes on a stick, noodles with soybean paste, shao-mai (it's like a dumpling I guess), fried rings, pea cakes, fried pork, Tiaotou pasty, and a crispy cake."
"You know we're going to be here for almost a week, right?" Tonks asked, stunned.
"It's not as much as it looks."
Tonks just shook her head and kept eating
"If I make this shot," Edmund Knolls (Beater) said, "You have to eat the spicy noodles."
Harry was fervently hoping Eddie didn't make the shot.
It was a little after dinner time, and after grabbing some food out in the town, the team had decided to come back to the hotel to relax and eat. Unfortunately, the Beaters, Eddie and Cooper, had done some shopping that day. What they'd found was a whole lot of alcohol. Since their game wasn't for another three days, their manager had relented on the drinking policy. At first, their game of beer pong had just been to try all of the different types of booze. Then side bets had begun…. Tonks had excused herself around that time.
Harry gripped the table and watched as the small ball went bouncing across it. It landed. "No!"
"Yes!" Eddie and Cooper said, high fiving each other.
"Eat up, mate," Ainsley (Chaser) said with a grin.
Harry sighed and picked up the bowl and chopsticks. With a deep breath, he began to eat. It only took two seconds for him to feel like his head was on fire. "Mmfffjjejailjkdddd!" he mumbled through a mouthful of noodles.
"What was that?" Cooper asked, laughing as the Boy-Who-Lived turned red.
Harry swallowed, making the fire spread to his throat. "I said, I'm going to have to kill you when this is over," he gasped, eyes watering.
"Come on, Harry! Only a little more to go," Eddie encouraged.
"Harry! Harry! Harry! Harry!"
"Is your throat feeling better yet?" Tonks asked as they walked around the Quidditch pitch.
"Very funny," Harry mumbled.
"I wasn't joking," Tonks said, taking his hand. "You ate an entire bowl full of noodles that had been soaked in the juice of the world's hottest chilies. I'm surprised you can even talk to me." She put an arm around his waist and leaned into him.
"I'm okay," he whispered, kissing her forehead.
"But it hurts, doesn't it?" Tonks added, smiling. She laughed when Harry pouted.
A bludger from the practice session taking place came toward them. Tonks managed to dodge it, but ended up tripping. "Story of my life," she said as Harry helped her up.
Harry always thought Tonks was beautiful, especially when she was working. Even more so when she'd caught a perp and was tackling him to the ground. "You okay?" he asked, running up. He knew she was, but he really couldn't come up with anything more clever at the moment.
"Fine," she panted. She had one foot in the middle of the creep's back and was magicking handcuffs as the security team came running.
Harry helped heave the man to his feet. Then, out of the corner of his eye, he noticed something. "Soren! Get after it, man!"
"What's happened?" Tonks asked, dragging the man roughly toward the railing. After all, she wasn't supposed to be on duty. He'd interrupted her Quidditch match—it was his fault he was getting manhandled.
"He's got it!" Harry yelled as the crowd went ballistic. "We've won."
"That's good news for you, Sleazy," Tonks told the wizard she'd apprehended. "The Auror department'll be in a good mood during questioning." She pushed him toward the two Aurors actually on duty. "Let's go celebrate with the team," she told Harry.
With a grin, Harry took her hand, and the two of them Disapparated.
LbN: Hope you liked it! Send reviews por favor!