Ginny stood in the kitchen doorway surveying the damage. Flour everywhere. Harry with his head in the sink, rinsing his mouth from the tap. Neville in an apron, looking bewildered.
"I leave you lads alone for an hour to go to the shops ..." she said, shaking her head and sounding very like her mother. "What's happened?"
"I baked biscuits," said Neville. "Harry tried one and --"
"Biscuits? What recipe did you use?"
Harry came up from the sink, coughing and spluttering, wet from hair to shoulders. "It was one of yours," he said accusingly.
"One of mine?" Ginny's coppery eyebrows drew together. "Show me."
The recipe was hand-written on a torn bit of parchment that had been tucked between the pages of a recipe book Ginny's mother had given to her. Ginny's eyes narrowed when she saw the handwriting.
"This is one of Fred and George's recipes. Did you really think it was normal to put dragon pepper in biscuits?"
"I just thought it would give them a bit of a kick," said Neville.
"It does that," Harry scowled. "Merlin, my mouth feels like it's on fire!"
"Sorry, Harry," Neville told him glumly, and turned to scrape the rest of the biscuits into the bin.
Ginny put out a hand to stop him. "No, don't do that. I know how to fix them."
She flipped through the pages of the recipe book until she found what she was looking for.
"Here, we'll make up an icing for them, and add a Cooling charm to it to counteract the pepper."
In no time at all, the three of them were sitting around the kitchen table, busily icing a dwindling stack of biscuits.
"Is this better?" asked Ginny, holding one out for Harry to try.
He took a bite and chewed carefully. "I think so. It's hard to tell, though. I can barely feel my tongue."
Ginny gave him an impish grin. "Need me to kiss it better?"
"If you like," said Harry with a shrug. "But really, it's Neville who owes me."
He gave Neville a pointed look, eyebrows raised, waiting. Grinning, Neville leaned in to press his mouth to Harry's. Harry's lips tasted of spices and sweetness.
"Better?" Neville asked a moment later.
"A bit," said Harry, smiling dreamily.
Neville gave him a wink. "Maybe I can find some other way to square it with you."
Harry's smile widened. "You're welcome to try."
"Boys!" laughed Ginny, rolling her eyes.
Fred & George's Dragonfire Biscuits
1/2 c. treacle (molasses)
1 c. soft butter
1 1/2 c. dark brown sugar
2 beaten eggs
3 c. flour
1/2 t. salt
1 t. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
2 t. ginger
1 t. cloves
1/2 t. dragon pepper (or cayenne pepper if Muggle)
Preheat oven to 350ºF/175ºC. Mix treacle, butter, sugar and egg until smooth. Separately mix flour, salt, soda and spices. Add dry to wet and stir into dough. Spoon 1" lumps onto an ungreased baking tray. Bake 8-10 minutes. Makes ~56 biscuits.
Ginny Weasley's Soothing Icing
2 c. icing sugar (powdered sugar)
2 T. soft butter
1 T. cream
2 t. vanilla essence
1 standard grade Cooling Charm
Beat sugar and butter until crumbly. Add cream and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Add a few drops of water if too stiff. Apply Cooling Charm once icing is a spreadable consistency. Wait until biscuits are completely cooled to frost. Let icing harden at least half an hour before stacking biscuits.