idea_of_sarcasm: (neville longbottom like JB)
idea_of_sarcasm ([personal profile] idea_of_sarcasm) wrote2008-08-18 01:22 am

Drabble (short!fic) the sixth

Remember those drabble-prompts I took and was working through super slowly before real life got insanely busy? Yeah, they'd started to slip my mind too. Finally though, here's a completion of one that slipped through the cracks when things picked up and pushed writing out of the way.

Title: Discoveries
Author: [ profile] idea_of_sarcasm
Rating: PG-13
Pairing: Neville/Hannah
Summary: Hannah understands what Neville somehow manages to remain clueless about

"You've been coming in here nearly every day Neville."

Neville looked up at person who offered the comment in the quite nearly reproachful tone from the pint he was slowly nursing. It was true he had been coming into the Leaky a little more frequently than he was fairly sure any of his Hogwarts professors had, or his coworkers currently did, but he hadn't really thought much of it, or really paid attention until that moment. It was just that Hannah had made it a nice pleasant escape for a few hours, more of a homey pub than the establishment it used to be, and it was near the only thing open the hours after he was done teaching. Besides, the Three Broomsticks was hardly an escape either, with Lillian Dirwimple the new muggle studies professor, and Darla Carson who'd taken over potions, running into him a bit too conveniently too many times.

It was the proprietress of the establishment who had made the observation, looking down at him with concern, dishrag for wiping down the bar counter in her hand. He still couldn't quite believe she'd taken over the place, having to deal with drunks and insolent customers every day, but she seemed satisfied. Still, every time he came in, he was on the lookout for any trouble he could help her with to ease the burden. Mostly though, he was left alone with his drink and his thoughts, trying to delay the hours until he had to return to his rooms at the castle.

"Not every day," he hedged with a rueful smile, "just...every second day maybe."

Shaking her head, Hannah tossed aside the cloth, waving her wand to have it do the task on it's own. She leaned over the counter with crossed arms, offering a lovely view of her rather lovely tits that Neville had to use all his willpower not to ogle. "Come on love, tell Hannah what's the matter."

Neville only shook his head, smiling bemusedly, "Since when did you become a counsellor Hannah?"

She shrugged, the breasts heaved, and Neville really couldn't look away as properly as he should. "No apprenticeship here, but I'm a barman now of sorts, this is what we do, isn't it? Listen to problems of those down in their cups, offer a sympathetic ear? I admit I'm rather awful at it – I basically gave Mr. Fowler the equivalent of a howler yesterday when he started telling me about his problems at home which were in reality all his fault, but I'm learning to hold my tongue. So, come on, let me practice on you, and we might get the problem solved that has you frequenting my pub every night."

"It might just be I like your company," he pointed out, and he couldn't help the slight flush that stole over his cheeks.

A red tinge found her face as well, but she shook her head, "Come on Neville, man up, something had to have you finding your way down here in the dead of winter when you could be snug up in your bed at the castle."

He was tempted to write it off, but it didn't take a true seer to see he was having a problem. It wasn't like he could properly talk to the other professors either about it, because he should be able to handle this kind of thing on his own. In truth, this kind of thing shouldn't be happening at bloody all. Embarrassing as the story was too, there was something about Hannah that he knew she wouldn't take the piss, unlike if he owled round to Dean or to Seamus. Besides, she was of the female persuasion, she might have some insight that he didn't, and though he did talk to Professor Sprout frequently, he really doubted and hoped she'd never been on either side of the situation he found himself in.

"It's the students," he began hesitantly, "Pomona's been letting me take over more and more of her classes recently, and without her in the's been getting out of control."

Hannah looked almost pleased at the problem. "That's an easy enough solution – you just have to show them who is boss. Maybe you can't quite pull off the menacing look, but a few handed out detentions should do the trick. Something particularly nasty too, served with you no less. That will have them under your spell faster than you can say 'flobberworm'. I remember classes in our days – I mean Ernie, he was just little bit up-tight and wouldn't so much as fidget during class, but Justin was always a terror when it came to anybody but Snape. And the greasy git's tactics calmed him there."

It was obvious she wasn't quite grasping the concept, but he hadn't explained it well. Glancing around to make sure the stools beside him were empty, Neville practically hissed, "It's not like that. It's the, uh, female students."

"The female students?" Hannah parroted back, obviously lost.

Neville nodded quickly, "The female students." A man grown, and he couldn't stop the flush that was threatening to come back again. Hannah didn't get it, and he tried to explain. "They start giggling the moment I walk into the classroom, chatting amongst themselves, passing notes, and staring all the time. I mean, I thought they were making fun of me, which would have been bad enough in itself – flashbacks to first year and all the ones after it that passed in a similar fashion, but once I intercepted one of their notes, I realized they weren't."

He broke off, Hannah only looking at him expectantly, and the flush was present when he continued. "They seem enamoured of me."

When the guffaws of laughter didn't follow his statement, Neville was a little surprised, but a smirk was emerging around the corners of Hannah's mouth and he groaned, "I know, ridiculous, isn't it?"

"No!" Hannah assured him quickly, laughing now, "It's not, I mean, not in the way you mean. I was just laughing because you look so completely and utterly appalled by the idea. Suppose that's good in a way since you're their teacher, but really, you didn't see this coming just a little bit?"

The words took him completely aback, "Why would I? I mean, if Harry had taken the Defense Against the Dark Arts post they offered him I could see it, but..."

Hannah rolled her eyes, "Neville, you are a prat. You're attractive, you're nice, you're smart – and oh wait, yes, you were a hero at the Battle of Hogwarts whose virtues were extolled in the Daily Prophet for many weeks after, and you led the students during the year before. These are the things female crushes are born of. Face it Professor Longbottom, to these girls, you are on par with Quidditch star."

It was obvious she meant the words to be reassuring in some way. They gave him a little flutter, that she thought those things about him, but mostly it gave him a sense of grief. This time he really groaned, resting his head in his hands, "This isn't just going to go away, is it? I can't stay in the castle because the all come around, looking for some individual 'help'," he used his fingers to put quotations around the words, "when I'm in my office or my private rooms. I can't teach properly because they all twitter behind me, and I'm fairly sure I've heard more comments than I want to about my arse, quiet though they are."

When he looked back up at her, it was obvious Hannah was trying not to smile. "I see your dilemma," she said, with a nod, biting her tongue.

"Thank you," he said with a sigh, reaching again for the pint, and taking a larger sip this time.

As he drank the alcohol down faster than he normally would, Hannah mused, "No, I really see your dilemma. There goes the detention idea then, considering half of them probably fantasize about that anyway. Either time alone with the lust-worthy Professor Longbottom as it's own reward, or bent over his desk with their knickers down around their ankles..." She burst out laughing when he spit half of his drink over the counter.

"Sorry," Neville mumbled, wiping at it with his sleeve, "but did you really have to offer that? They can't think that way, they're just teenage..." For her part, he couldn't really reconcile Hannah talking that way with the Hannah he knew. She'd always seemed to sweet and innocent, even now, when they were well removed from the classroom.

He was cut off by Hannah giving him a look that was tinged with a little nervousness, "I did."

That took Neville aback. He supposed he should have assumed that about girls, knowing what pervy wankers the blokes in his dorm had been, himself not exactly exempt. It stood to reason they thought about sexual things too, even if most of them had seemed rather unaware. Of course theirs probably didn't center around the Gryffindor chaser trio in the showers together, but he was sure there was some kind of male equivalent they'd fixate on. Though with what Hannah said, it implied one of the professors might have been the focus of her fantasies, and Neville's face scrunched up before he could help it.

"You were one of those...Professor Snape?" He said, hating that he sounded like a scandalized prude. Neville knew there had been some of those type of girls out there, but he could never help but be disgusted by it, given that he still remembered the cold sweats that followed a particularly nasty potions lecture.

"No!" Hannah replied indignantly, which reassured him, but it still left the unanswered question. And for the life of him, he couldn't think of a single Hogwarts professor that even the most needy of girls could have a tendre for.

"Flitwick?" He asked, torn between amusement and disgust, and she shook her head, ponytail flying. It was obviously meant to cut him off, but he couldn't help but continue now, amused in spite of himself.

"Slughorn? Dumbledore? Filch?" Neville continued, and then with a grin ran through the whole list, even tacking on a few of the female professors, Hooch included. Each time Hannah shook her head, getting more red.

When he finally finished, Hannah grabbed the cloth that had just finished with the bar and tossed it at him. Not used to teasing this much, normally he was the one being teased, Neville couldn't help but allow the grin to stay wide on his face as he ducked the missile headed his way. Merlin but he did like being around Hannah. Even now he wasn't comfortable enough with most women for it to be this easy. He might not be timid and shy, but women were a whole different matter. It hadn't been an entire lie when he had told her he had escaped to the Leaky just for her company.

When he paid attention to her, Hannah seemed to be gathering her courage for something, and he waited, a little confused. "I never said I had a thing for a professor," she said finally, stressing the word.

Neville was even more lost then, "Okay then. Sorry, Hannah, I was just joking around. I'm sure whatever bloke you fancied back then was perfectly worthy and perfectly capable of bending you over a desk and..."

She shook her head, blushing even more furiously then, "I was trying to say, you dolt, that I suffered – and suffer – from the same problem those girls seem to have." At his probably rather blank look, she went further, stuttering a little bit when she offered, "I had a little bit of a crush on you Neville."

"Me?" He said incredulously, and she nodded, seemingly waiting for whatever response he had to offer.

Neville hesitated, then said in what he knew sounded like a very odd voice, "You thought of me bending you over..."

"No!" Hannah said, hiding her face in her hands, "I mean, not then. Now maybe, but...sorry Neville, I suppose this isn't the time for confessions is it? Not when you're having actual problems plaguing you." She ran her hands over her hair, before giving a bit of a humourless laugh, "Apparently I really am pants at this bartending thing. Leave the confessions of being enamoured with the customer until they've had at least ten pints and won't remember it in the morning."

It was obvious he hadn't given the right response to please her, but the truth of it was, Neville just found himself completely surprised with her admission. There had been a few women since school, and he knew he wasn't completely a lost cause, but girls back then hadn't really looked twice. Not in any serious sense, and certainly not with him as an object to be fixated on. That was what he was having problems with, reconciling it with what he knew to be the case, rather than any displeasure at her offering the sentiment. Merlin knew he'd thought of her in similar ways in all the time he'd rediscovered her here at the Leaky.

And now he was completely making a mess of it.

"Me?" He couldn't help but repeat that one more time, sure that maybe she had meant to say Seamus, or Harry, or Dean. Maybe Oliver Wood, or the Weasley twins, or perhaps Blaise Zabini. He knew he should just snog her senseless, but he couldn't seem to let it go.

Hannah looked a little cross, "I swear to Merlin, if you're searching for compliments, I..."

"No," he said quickly, even though he supposed in essence that was what he had been doing.

It was apparent she was softening a little, when with a sigh she offered, not quite looking at him, "Listen Neville, you were always so sweet. It didn't exactly start off lustful, but you were quite simply the nicest boy I ever met. I mean, Ernie was and is practically my best mate, but even he wasn't as nice, and he didn't make my stomach flutter like you did. And for all you seemed so nervous, you were always so competent," she gave a slightly rueful smile of things remembered, "not exactly like me. And then you grew, and you evolved – into something everybody wanted to be, or wanted to be associated with. And I wanted to hex them because I had seen you first, I had known it first, and they were just seeing what they should have seen all along." Sneaking a peek at him, she gave a forced laugh, "And isn't that the schmoopiest thing I could have offered. Sorry, I keep opening my mouth."

"I like when you open your mouth," he responded quickly, realizing too late how it either sounded incredibly stupid, or a little bit dirty.

Hannah smiled, reaching out and patting his hand, but already backing away. "Let's just forget I said anything. Now, as for what we can do about those students of yours. I don't suppose you fancy being covered in boils for..."

"I don't want to forget it," Neville snaked out his hand to catch her, to bring her closer to him over the counter. "I want a timeturner so I can go back about three minutes and tell you everything I should have said, but not to forget it."

"Everything you should have said?" She'd picked up on that, and she left her hand limply in his.

He nodded, "About how I fancy you too. I can't date it back to Hogwarts, since I must have been blind then, but I...I really want to see you. All the time. Preferably when you're not working for once. And how much I simply like you, and well, if you want physical proof of more, when the mention came up of bending you over a desk, let's just say I was glad I was wearing long and flowing robes. What I should have said Hannah, is would you like to have dinner Friday night?"

It was amazing the brightness of the smile that came across her face at his request. "I'd love to," she said simply and quietly, squeezing his hand.

For all Hannah's suggestive comment, she was a nice and not exactly promiscuous girl, and they hadn't even been on a date yet, but Neville found himself leaning up into a standing position, bending across the counter and capturing her lips with his. He didn't even let himself blush though he knew there were other patrons in the pub, all he could think of was that her lips looked entirely kissable, and now he knew that she wanted him too. He teased against her lips, softly, a languid kiss before moving to pull back, not wanting to push too far, too fast. It was Hannah though that grabbed onto his robes, pulling him closer and deepening the kiss, tongue sliding in to meld with his.

He was grinning widely and breathing heavily when he pulled back, and she seemed nearly as effected. "Even better than my fantasy," Hannah said with a wink, and Neville felt a stirring that linked in with the fact she actually fantasized about him.

The pub happenings went on around them, but they were seemingly oblivious, taken with each other in the moment. A few people seated at tables waved for service, but Hannah missed them as they randomly smiled and met each others eyes like they were first years dancing around each other with innocent little crushes. Neville knew things were going to be just as bad and embarrassing during class the next day as they'd been for every day since he'd taken over from Pomona, but in that moment he couldn't be arsed to care.

"Now I'm really going to be here every night," he said with a smile.

Requestor: [ profile] msmoocow who has probably forgotten making the prompt
Prompt: 'Neville/Hannah, with a bit of inappropriate humor and fluff that isn't cloyingly sweet' (sorry, I haven't read 'Mediator' yet – I have to find the right program to open those files)

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