Cordelia sauntered into the staff room, smiling when she saw the only occupant. “Hey, Minnie. What’s shaking?”
Minerva McGonagall raised an eyebrow but congenially replied, “Hello, Miss Chase.
Cordy seriously liked the headmistress, but she’d seen the woman half drunk before, the night of the Annual Celebration that marked the end of their dark wizard, and she couldn’t quite bring herself to let her forget it.
She settled herself into the chair across from her and asked, “You seriously taught Neville to dance?”
McGonagall both brightened and softened, reminding Cordelia why she liked her so much. The woman really had given a part of herself to the children she taught.
“Yes, I did,” she said, smiling in memory. “And it was quite a task. He’s very graceful these days but when he was younger…Well, we’ll just say accidents were his nature.”
Cordelia knew her grin was a little goofy as she said, “That’s awesome.”
McGonagall’s gaze sharpened and she said, “Well, well. Miss Chase, I do believe you’ve taken a bit of a liking to our Mr. Longbottom.”
Cordelia hadn’t blushed in years, but she felt the blood rush to her cheeks. “It reminds me of when I was in high school. I had this boyfriend, horrible fashion sense and totally unpopular and…sweet. We’re friends now and I like that but…I’ve missed it. And it feels almost the same with Neville.”
She closed her mouth, not at all sure why she’d spilled the beans that way.
McGonagall patted her hand and said, “The first blush of love looks lovely on you, dear. May he live up to your expectations.”
Cordelia nodded, throat tight. She wasn’t in love. She wasn’t
. And she wasn’t falling
in love, either. She would have noticed that.
McGonagall patted her hand again and said, “Your portkey to San Francisco has arrived from the Ministry. Do be careful with it. Transatlantic travel is always difficult, even for the Wizarding World.”
Cordelia nodded again, relieved. Maybe a little distance was all she’d need and Dawn’s birthday party was the perfect excuse.