Severus paced around his room nervously. He kept on loosening his tie as it felt like it was choking him. He really needed to get a grip he thought. He kept glancing at the clock as each passing minute felt like years. When should he leave? What time would be considered too early or too late? Should he be early or be just on time? What time was just in time? The questions bore into him and the worst of it was that Minerva was coming into his life at the worst of all times. His dark mark was becoming more apparent as he would sometimes feel the odd burning effect. Could it be that the Dark Lord shall be rising soon? Where would that leave him and Minerva? He felt like he was in a Shakespeare Novel. Well maybe that was going a bit too far. He wasn't the charming gentleman that was portrayed in novels, but more of the cynical depressed person who loomed in the background. They never get the girl do they? No, why would they deserve the girl? It was the brave valiant noble gentleman that gets the girl in every fairytale and in every story ever told, but this wasn't a fairytale. It was cold brutal life that he had grown accustomed to.
He glanced at the clock once more. That was it. He was going and if he didn't have the perfect timing then it was just the story of his life. Severus walked out of his room as he abruptly slammed his door shut causing the person in his painting to jolt from the sudden commotion. The painted person scowled at Severus, but didn't bother to say a word at the unpleasant man. Severus swiftly made it out of the dungeons as the sound of children got louder. Maybe he did have perfect timing. At least he could help Minerva keep order of the hormonal teens. He scowled at some of the students that he passed on his way. A small satisfied smirk appeared when he saw the students quickly avert their eyes towards the floor as they suddenly found the sight of their shoes more amusing to look at. He then heard her voice rising from the crowd and his smile broadened.
"Champions and their dates please follow me." Minerva instructed. The crowd was too immense for him to catch a glimpse of her. He pushed them aside and then he saw her. She was in a lovely scarlet dress that hugged her curves in just the right ways. It was a one shoulder dress as a diamond broach held the delicate fabric together on her shoulder. Her black long hair was curled as it was half up and half down. The tresses cascaded down her back beautifully as few strands were left in the front which softened and framed her face. She truly looked like an enchanted goddess. She gracefully navigated through the horde of children as she gathered the champions together. Severus built up the courage as he approached her. He cleared his throat to get her attention, and tried to look completely bored. Minerva turned to see Severus was standing behind her and smiled to see that he was dressed in formal black dress robes.
"Can I be of any service?" Severus asked in a low monotone voice.
"Yes, could you please get the rest of the children inside the Great Hall? You would be such a great help, thank you."
"Sure, why not?" Severus replied dryly and then left her to return to the champions. Well he was back to his old self thought Minerva, bitter as always. She then looked at the champions and was delighted to see that they all had dates and were all accounted for. Now she had to get into the Great Hall herself. Minerva then felt a slight tap on her shoulder and turned around to see the Headmaster, Albus Dumbledore, by her side. He offered her his arm and he had that brilliant twinkle in his blue eyes.
"I think it's time my dear for us to make our way to the Great Hall. If the champions can make it past a dragon, I think they can make it to the Great Hall." She smiled and thought she was worrying too much.
"You're right as always Albus, thank you." she replied as she gratefully accepted his arm and he led her into the Great Hall and they stood by the other judges and heads of the foreign schools.
She then leaned in and whispered in his ear, "Oh and thank you for the Ginger Newts." He smiled and nodded his head.
"You're very welcome my dear." The music then sounded and Severus had made his way to her side. They were very close again for comfort as his shoulder brushed against her bare one. She pretended not to notice and just smile and watched the champions enter the Great Hall, but the presence of him near her made her quiver inside. The music started and the champions started to dance. Harry Potter was dreadful she thought. He was a wonderful wizard and quidditch player, but who would think that he had two left feet when it came to dancing? She then felt Severus's arm brush against hers and it was getting to be too much. She was grateful when she felt a soft warm reassuring hand slipping into hers. It was Dumbledore as he led her to the dance floor. It only made sense she thought. She was after all his deputy and since he wasn't in a relationship or a spouse she would be the most suitable partner.
He respectively placed his hand on her waist as he guided her through the music. It felt like earlier that morning again except this time they were dressed in formal attire. Minerva certainly took Dumbledore's breath away. Surely she was beautiful he knew that, but never had he seen her like this. Minerva thought Dumbledore looked wonderful in his light aquamarine dress robes that had silver stars in them. That man loved stars and lemon drops. What an odd combination she thought, but still she smiled at the thought of it. It wasn't an odd combination really for an eccentric man like Albus.
"You are breath taking Min." he told her softly towards the end of the song. Some color rose to her cheeks as it lined her cheeks bones pleasantly.
"You don't look too bad yourself Albus." she replied and he once again took her hand and raised it to his lips.
"Always a pleasure to dance with you Min, but I can't be greedy. I'm sure there will be many others that you will have to dance with as well."
Minerva laughed disbelievingly as she didn't think she had many suitors. "And as always you are too kind Albus, but I'm sure you have many others to dance with other than me."
"Hmm, too true, I shall see you later Min and do try to enjoy tonight." Dumbledore wished her good evening as he left to dance with the Headmistress of Beauxbatons Academy of Magic. Severus watched loathingly again at Minerva dancing with Dumbledore. The scene made his blood boil as he went to take his patrolling rounds early. Yelling at kids was always a favorite past time.
The night went on and Severus only got to reprimand two Raven Claws, three Slytherins, and one Huffelpuff. For some reason he had not crossed a Gryffindor yet.
"Take away any points from Gryffindor yet?" asked an all too familiar mocking voice. He smirked and turned around to see Minerva there with her arms folded around her arms as if she were keeping warm.
"Are you cold?"
"No, I'm fine." she replied but she was always stubborn he thought. He took off his outer robes and wrapped it around her shoulders. She then took it off and handed it back to him.
"Thank you, but I don't need it. I'm going back inside soon anyway. Have to make sure no one spiked the butter beer."
"Ah, yes, the famous old spiking trick. I remember Sirius did that at my Yule Ball, though I remember clearly that you let him get away with it."
"I did not." she said defiantly. "He got three weeks of detention and not to mention had sit out on one of the quidditch games."
"Oh no, the star player has to sit out of the game. No actually it was Potter that was the star player. He was the star at everything." Severus responded sardonically and full of hatred.
"Why do you despise them so much?"
"Other than making my life a living hell and teasing me every single day that I was at Hogwarts, I have no idea."
"Oh I'm sorry Severus. I didn't know they teased you. I know they pulled that one prank on you and I was furious at Sirius for it."
"You were, then why didn't you expel him for feeding me to a werewolf?"
"Well Albus never asked me to make the decision. At that point I might have for putting another student's life in jeopardy like that is inexcusable." she replied as she made her way to the beverage section. Severus was happy to hear that she would have expelled that prick. He watched as she took out her wand and tested the fountain. It was clean for now. The Great Hall emanated loud blaring music from the popular rock group the Weird Sisters. Students wildly moved their bodies in all different directions, and even though the room was filled with ice, heat still managed to creep up Severus's body. He felt like his tie was choking him once more.
"Would you like a drink now that it's safe from alcohol?" Severus asked Minerva. She wasn't feeling parched, but she didn't think it was an awful idea.
"Sure, thank you." she agreed and he grabbed two glasses for them as he led her to the nearest empty table. They sat silently as the music penetrated their ears. Severus thought the silence for once was awkward so he put down his glass and looked at Minerva.
"People dance strangely now a days." He commented about the way their pupil's bodies moved. Minerva hadn't expected him to say anything but nodded in agreement.
"Yes they sure do." With that Severus grew a mischievous grin on his face as he wondered. He stood up before Minerva and offered her his hand.
"Would you like to dance?" he asked with a daring arched eyebrow. She looked at him incredulously. A moment ago he just commented on how ridiculous the students looked and now he wanted to join them.
"Come on, it might be surprisingly fun."
"But I don't know how to dance the way they do." she protested and he laughed at her uncertainty.
"Honestly I don't think they know what they're doing either." He replied. She still didn't know what to say, so he decided for her. He grabbed her hand and pulled her up closer to him.
"Just feel the beat and move to it." he told her over the blearing music, but she didn't trust her body. She probably would look ridiculous. Plus what would her students think if they saw her like this? Her thoughts were disrupted as Severus started to dance before her. His body swayed perfectly to the beat of the drums as his hands moved dramatically but they still looked graceful as they moved dramatically.
"Come on my dear Professor and bust a move. I know you can." Severus teased since Minerva hadn't moved at all. Minerva still didn't know what to do so Severus took the liberty to pull her into the dance. He grabbed her hand and twirled her towards him. Her body clashed into him and for the first time their bodies were molded into one. They had never been that close before and it was unnerving for Minerva. It only intensified as Severus moved his hands down her sides to her waist and then started to guide them. They swayed in unison and Minerva could feel his warm breath on the nape of her neck. He could smell the sweet scent of her soft silky hair and better yet feel it on his bare skin. Just as it was getting to be too much for both of them, he twirled her away from him, but never let go of her hand.
"You see, it's all in the hips." he shouted over the music and he smirked to see her still shocked expression.
"And you would know." she retorted dryly after she collected her senses. If he could do it then so could she. He smiled at her surprised to see her move her body on her own accord without having him to guide her. She followed his instructions as she allowed her hips to sway to the beat of the music and for her body to flow along with it like a wave. She even closed her eyes to take in the music and feel it rise in her. She was a vision in front of him as it was probably the first time she had released herself like this. Severus enjoyed every minute of it as he pulled her back towards him. She felt his body against hers again, but this time she wasn't so coy about it. He could smell her intoxicating perfume scent that only made her more alluring. She was gorgeous when she was free. Severus loved to see her let go and she was surprisingly having fun as she let her walls down. She hadn't let them down for a while and it was unexpectedly thrilling.
The night went on and Minerva and Severus had worn themselves out. They were unbelievably over heated and so they decided it was a good time to patrol the halls for any misfits. Students were starting to disperse from the Great Hall, and so the two strict Professors made sure they were getting to their rooms instead of empty classrooms or vacant carriages. Severus finally was able to catch a Gryffindor that evening though it turned out to not be as big of a deal as he thought it might have been. It was just the Granger girl yelling at Potter and Weasley. Severus had to smirk while Minerva looked concerned.
"Are you alright Granger?" asked Minerva as she went to comfort her star pupil. Severus looked away as he was impassive by the scene. His eye then caught the sight of a drunken Sybil Trelawney. Of course the crazed witch chose to get drunk at the Yule Ball out of all events to be inebriated at. She could barely stand straight the daft coot. She then caught Severus's eyes on her and she smiled dumbly. Severus only gave her a quizzical look as she sauntered over towards him. Minerva had just sent Hermione back to her quarters when she returned to the sight of Sybil throwing her arms unceremoniously around Severus's neck. She reeked of sherry thought Severus as he could smell her breath. He went to push her off, but she only responded by claiming his mouth with hers. He could hear and feel her moaning and could taste the overly sweet flavor of the sherry.
Minerva stood shocked by the scene. How stupid and foolish she was to ever think he could like her. She ran from the scene. Severus heard her rapid pace down the halls as he tried to push Sybil off of him, but her grip around him was surprisingly strong for a drunk. She then let go of his lips as she inhaled him deeply.
"I knew we had something my dear potion professor." whispered the unstable fortune teller.
"Get your hands off me." growled Severus. He successfully unhinged the drunken professor off of him as he went after Minerva. Minerva had witnessed the sight of Severus clashing lips with the most flimsy of all witches in the Scotland. She was hurt and angry not at him but more at herself. How did she even let herself get that far? That's what she gets for letting her walls down she thought. She silently cried as she slammed her back against the cold unforgivable stone wall. Damn it he made her cry she thought. She suddenly felt a warm reassuring hand on her shoulder. She dared to look up. There was Albus Dumbledore by her side as he placed a friendly hand on her cheek. He wiped away some of her tears as he looked worried.
"Why are you crying on such a beautiful night like this?" he asked her kindly. He took a step closer to her as he outstretched his arms to cradle her. She accepted them as she felt his warm embrace. She rested her head on his chest as she held him to her. She felt his warmth as it was comforting more than anything. Why was she falling for Severus when here was the man who had always loved her?
"Do you love me?" she asked softly to the point he had to strain to hear her it was barely auditable. He held his breath as he didn't know if he should tell her. For so long he did love her, but he thought the age difference was too much and he didn't want to endanger her. His enemies would surly take advantage for his love for Minerva and he wanted to protect her. His delay was all she needed as she boldly lifted her head from his chest and lightly kissed him. She parted to see his expression. He felt her soft lips and wanted more. He kissed her back and she was taken by surprise, but she didn't resist. She tasted him as he tasted her. He ironically tasted like those damned lemon drops he loved. They broke apart and pressed their foreheads together.
"Yes I love you Minerva, and I always will be yours." He answered her question. She smiled as she had chosen the right man in the end. It was Albus all along and always would be she thought. Later that night she found herself laying next to the man she loved as their hands were intertwined. She listened to his heart beat as it was her own. He chuckled softly and kissed her hair.
"That was more fun than slapping Jack."
Author's note: Sorry but I couldn't help myself. I wanted to use that line ever since I wrote the part where they played Slap Jack. Hehe…I know my mind is not right. I hoped you enjoyed the story and for you SS/MM lovers the story isn't over yet. Like I said, I think both parties will be happy with the last chapter. I was split between the two so I decided it was only fair if I made two versions, one where Minerva ended up with Albus, and the other where she ends up with Severus. The story picks off where Severus gets Sybil off him and goes running after Minerva. Hope you enjoy.
Severus ran after Minerva. Certainly she couldn't believe that the kiss meant anything. He had no intentions of kissing Sybil, even if she was the last woman on the planet. He found her leaned against the stone wall as her legs gave way and she was now crouched on the ground. Was she crying? His heart leapt to see her distressed and to think he had caused it. No it wasn't him, it was the daft woman, but nonetheless he came to Minerva's side.
"Minerva." He said her name cautiously. He didn't know if she'd run again or if she would unleash her famous temper that could out due a dragon. Instead she did neither she remained still. She was too embarrassed to move. He had found her crying and it was the last position she wanted him to see her in. He knelt down beside her as he banged the back of his head against on the wall out of frustration.
"I just can't catch a break can I?" he questioned out loudly, but Minerva remained motionless. "Minerva, it didn't mean anything. You know how daft that woman is. She was drunk and decided to kiss me even though I had no intentions of kissing her." She still remained motionless and Severus sighed. Would she ever forgive him?
"Trust me Minerva when I say this, but that kiss was unbearable. I mean she reeked of sherry and better yet she tasted like it too. It was grotesquely overly sweet and not the kind of sweet of that red velvet." he admitted and Minerva had to suppress a smile. "Oh and that sticky frizzy hair over the face is…I can't even find words to describe it. It was awful." Minerva looked up to see Severus looking dejected and she found herself believing him. Sybil was a daft person and she thought she was so stupid to even cry over it.
"I'm sorry." Minerva managed to say as she leaned towards him.
"For what, the kiss or for leaving my defenseless against the woman?"
"Both." replied Minerva stifling her laughter. The kiss was that bad?
"If it's both I think you'll have to do a lot better than that." he chided with that famous smirk of his plastered over his face. She smiled as she leaned in closer towards him as their faces were once again inches away from each other's once more.
"Is this what you had in mind?" she asked as Severus could feel her warm breath on him, and thankfully it did not reek of sherry.
"It's up to you." He answered and she leaned in further to kiss him.
"Severus there you are!" yelled Igor.
"Bloody hell, why does this happen every time?" yelled Severus out of frustration. Igor shrank back from Severus's severe gaze.
"Sorry to disrupt you Severus." apologized Igor before he retreated.
"Now where were we?" asked Severus as he averted his attention back to Minerva.
"I think we were going to check if anyone is left in the Great Hall." replied Minerva getting up from her place. Damn it thought Severus. They were so close, but yet they failed again to meet lips and he didn't want to pull her in as if he was forcing her to kiss him. She offered to help him up as her hand was out stretched towards him.
"I don't remember agreeing to this." grumbled Severus as he accepted her hand and got up to stand beside her.
"You don't have to." replied Minerva smiling. Damn that witch. She knew she had him and man was she making him work for it. He had never wanted anyone as much as he wanted her at this moment. Not even Lilly surprisingly. They walked back to the Great Hall to find a few remaining couples on the dance floor. Great thought Severus, of course there would still be people there. Was this evil Karma he thought because it was doing one hell of a job at making him suffer. The Weird Sisters had left which left Flitwick's music box to play. It now played slow soothing music. Severus noticed Minerva sway slowly to it, and if he was going to get a kiss from her, he was going to have to work for it.
"Would you like to dance?" asked Severus as he offered Minerva his hand once more. "You can show off your skills of dancing." He looked up to see her smiling.
"Well you can dance too I've noticed earlier this evening."
"That wasn't dancing, but merely following to the beat." he replied and she took his hand graciously.
"Severus you can dance, just not ballroom dancing."
"You've never even seen me ballroom dance."
"I think that broken pot speaks for itself." she replied nonchalantly.
"Is that a challenge?" he asked when he already knew the answer.
He twirled her towards him more gracefully than earlier before. "Even if it were a challenge I don't think you'd be up for it." she said with a daring glint in her emerald eyes.
"Oh we'll see about that." he responded by guiding her across the dance floor. He twirled her out again and then back towards him. Their faces were close and inches apart. She saw the fire in his dark eyes, but they weren't out of anger but more out of passion. He placed his hand lightly on the small of her back as he pushed her closer to him. He could smell her lovely scent once more upon him and he wanted more. They were dancing none other than the seductive dangerous dance of the tango. His slowly pedaled backwards as he dragged her along with his hand still lightly on her lower back. Their foreheads were pressed together now as the atmosphere around them grew intense with desire and longing for the other. His finger slowly moved up her spine and when it came to the nape of her neck he dipped her. He bent down as he almost came in contact with her neck, but he restrained. He pulled her back up so they were at eye level. She smiled as she hadn't expected him to be so light on his feet.
By now the remaining dancers stopped to look at the two professors that had claimed the dance floor. They moved once again instead it was Minerva who was forced to move backwards. Their gazes were still upon each other as the intensity did not cease. He dipped her once again except this time he did plant a soft kiss to her neck which caused her to shutter. If she was going to tease him then he would tease her. The dance continued as it was the battle of the wits. Who would be the first to give into the temptation?
The others saw the intimacy and felt like they were intruding on something that was private so they decided to leave. Minerva and Severus were alone at last, but neither took notice until the song ended. Minerva looked around to see they were alone only to feel Severus rest his head at curve of her neck. She unclasped his hold on her and moved to turn off the music. Severus followed her. Her fingers trailed the wooden surface of Flitwick's music box and she then felt Severus's arms slip round her waist as he drew her close to him. She pretended to pay no attention to it as she continued to look for the way to turn it off. She knew exactly how to turn it off, but the suspension seemed to only heighten Severus's desire. He grew inpatient just like she had expected. He waved his hand at the box and shut it off.
"Why must you keep on torturing me?" beseeched Severus as he still had her in his grasps.
"Me, I don't know what you're talking about." Minerva replied sounding as innocently as she possibly could though she couldn't keep from smiling.
"Only because you like it."
"Merlin damn it, I do." Severus admitted and he spun her around so she was facing him. He took her chin in one hand as he guided her to his lips only stopping just before they touched. He watched in satisfaction as Minerva had closed her eyes thinking he was going to kiss her only to flutter them open to realize he wasn't.
"Now who's torturing who?" asked Minerva but before Severus could retort with something witty she closed the gap. Her lips were pressed firmly on his as he returned the kiss with the same intensity. She did not taste like tea like he had joked about, and he had to laugh about himself for that. He was wrong yet again. She wrapped her arms around his back drawing him closer to her. Yes she was teasing and alluring and yes they had been interrupted several times, but it was all worth it for this moment. Never could he have thought that he could love anyone the way he loved him and she never thought she'd fall in love with someone other than Albus. They broke away from the kiss to breath. She smiled and rested her head on his shoulder while making small circles on his back.
Severus smiled as he had an idea. "Shall we test the theory of the best use of a vanishing spell? Between you and me, I think that Slytherin gets an O."
Author's note: Hope everyone enjoyed the final chapter and the end results whether which side you're on. Hehe… now I'm going to start a new story since I've been thinking about it all day. Thanks for those who had commented and voice their opinions. I hope all are satisfied and if not then feel free to tell me. If you did enjoy it then you can tell me that too. Wish you all well and thanks for reading the story as I've enjoyed every minute of writing it.