"So." Dumbledore settled back into the soft, plush couch and smiled at the man in front of him. "What do you say?"
"About teaching at Hogwarts?" England settled back into his chair. "I already gave you my answer."
Dumbledore sighed. "Yes, I know," he said. "I was hoping you'd changed your mind about that. We need as much help as possible with the war brewing on, and with you helping out..."
"I will help as much as possible. Of course I will. But actually teaching at Hogwarts..." England shook his head. "I simply do not have enough time."
"Why?" Dumbledore raised one eyebrow. "You've done it plenty of times in the past."
"Yes, I have," England agreed, "and I have enjoyed it. But I am busy now, and working at Hogwarts isn't going to help that. You're right - there is a war that is getting worse and worse by the day. But it isn't the only problem that I have to deal with."
"Surely, you would be able to do what you need to do from within Hogwarts." Despite his smile, England couldn't help but notice a tinge of desperation showing through. He sighed; if Dumbledore was allowing his fear to show, then it must have been worse than he thought.
"Is the Ministry still denying the existence of Voldemort?" England shot another glance at his old friend; yes, that was definitely apprehension shining in the other male's eyes.
"Unfortunately, yes," Dumbledore replied. "They refuse to even entertain the possibility."
"Fools," England muttered, shaking his head. "They have no idea what their ignorance is doing."
"The only hope we have is Harry Potter," Dumbledore said. "You know of the prophecy."
"Of course." England nodded his head. "I'm guessing that Potter has no clue."
"None at all," Dumbledore replied. "I did not want to dump a burden like that on that boy. He has had a hard life. It just wouldn't be fair to tell him that the fate of the Wizarding World is resting on his shoulders."
"Well when you put it like that, of course not!" England laughed. He took a moment to glance at his friend. "You realise," he said, "Potter is the only one who can vanquish Voldemort. Which astounds me, really. I mean how hard could it be to kill one man? Hmm...its almost like a challenge."
"Does that mean you'll be joining us at Hogwarts?" A twinkle appeared in Dumbledore's eyes. England rolled his eyes.
"If Potter is the only one who can destroy the Dark Lord then what good will I be?"
"If you are no good then what can we possible do?" Dumbledore laughed. "You are England."
"Well yes" England agreed. "But in the end, only Potter can kill Voldemort."
"But there are Death Eaters," Dumbledore reminded him. "All Voldemort's followers who are almost as bad. And despite the prophecy, how can a child have that much responsibility hanging over him? Harry needs help - and who better to help him than his country?"
England sighed. "You manipulating old sod. Fine, I'll help you."