Stewart Ackerly loved snow. It always reminded him of the Christmas holidays, when he was home from Hogwarts. The League broke season for the month of December, so Dad wasn't nearly as busy as he usually was. He looked fondly on many a snowy afternoons playing one-on-one Quidditch in the back before dinner.
Katie Bell hated snow. It was wet and cold- two things she despised. When it snowed, the sky was gray. She hated gray. It'd been snowing on the day she'd been cursed during her seventh year. It'd been snowing the day her Dad had died. Nothing good could come of snow.
How, exactly, she'd let him talk her into this, she couldn't remember. The possibility of snow had definitely not been factored into her plans for the day. Yet here she was, bundled in as many layers of clothing possible and out in the wretched wet stuff. She was supposedly helping Stewart watch his little cousins, although she wasn't sure who had the higher maturity level; Stewart, or the gaggle of children running around.
She let out a blood-curdling scream when something freezing and wet smacked her in the face, stealing her breath away for a split second before she regained her senses. Gloved hands hurried to scoop the remaining snow out of the hood of her coat, the creases of her scarf, anywhere it might touch her bare skin.
And then she heard it. A giggle. No... several giggles, coming from the little snow fort. When she turned her head, she could see three little sets of eyes peering over the top of the wall, three sets that instantly ducked behind their fortress when she turned her flashing brown eyes on them.
"Is that how you want to play it?" she called. Lips twitching into a small smirk, she went down to one knee, gathering up snowballs in her hand.
Straightening, she took aim...
Letting out another scream, she was knocked forward, landing face first in the snow. She was vaguely aware of another body on top of hers, a much larger, warm body, but at that moment, she didn't care. All she wanted was out of the snow.
"Bloody hell!" she screamed as soon as she got air, intent on kicking and thrashing about until whoever it was- Stewart, she'd bet her life on it- got the hell off of her.
Before she could strike out and hit a vital body part, Katie found herself flipped onto her back, Stewart's predatory smirk looming above her.
"Surrender, Cap'n Bell?"
"Never," she snarled, dark eyes flashing with irritation, taking advantage of his momentary lapse to silently gather up a snowball in her hand. Before he could react, she struck, shoving the mound of cold snow in his laughing face.
"Oi!" he sputtered through his surprise, frantically trying to get the snow off of his cold, cold nose. "You bloody harpy, you..."
"You started it," she retorted childishly.
"And I'll finish it, too," he muttered with a cheeky grin. Not waiting for a reply, he leaned down and pressed his lips to hers.
Katie wanted to protest- she was lying on the ground, pinned underneath him, and she could feel the snow starting to melt and seep through her clothing- but at that moment, it didn't matter. One hand reached out to tug on his scarf, pulling him even closer to her. Bloody hell, but the man could snog.
Soft kisses slowly gave way to deeper ones, the warmth of his skin transferring to her own. So wrapped up in one another were they that neither of them noticed when their audience- still hiding in the snow fort- started to lob snowballs at them, the occasional cries of, "Eww, snogging!" echoing through the air.
"Uncle Stewart, quit snogging your girlfriend!" one of the little boys called as he pelted them with snowballs.
She pulled back from him and glanced quizzically at Stewart's cousin, then back at Stewart. Her brown eyes, no longer irritated, were alight with amusement and curiosity. "Girlfriend?"
"If you want," Stewart replied easily. Even though his voice remained neutral, on the inside he was fidgeting like a first year in Snape's class.
A long, calculating moment passed as Katie looked at him. "Alright."
"Alright?" he asked, surprised. "You mean?"
"Alright as in yes, I'm your girlfriend. As bizarre as that term sounds for two adults in their mid to late twenties."
"Hey, you're the cougar in this couple. Preying on a naïve younger man like myself just because you want my body," he snickered.
Katie glared at him. "Would you like that to be ex-girlfriend?"
"No, no, sorry," he replied, sobering up. Bending down to give her one last thorough snog, he righted himself and extended a hand to her. "Now let's show these little brats how to have a snowball fight."