FIC: "A Guide and Not a Jailer" for ragdoll Recipient:ragdoll Author/Artist: ??? Title: A Guide and Not a Jailer Rating: NC-17 Pairings: Alastor Moody/Nymphadora Tonks Word Count: 5,500 Medium: Fic Warnings/Content Information (Highlight to View): *age disparity, possibly inappropriate workplace relationship*. Summary: Moody refuses to participate in silly Auror hazing traditions. His trainee, on the other hand, refuses to let him refuse. Author's/Artist's Notes: I am so thrilled I had the opportunity to write this for you, ragdoll! I tried to include as many of your 'likes' as possible, and I hope you enjoy it. Huge thanks to my sage and super-speedy beta, and to the mod for all the time and hard work that goes into this fest.
*** "Tradition is a guide and not a jailer." - W. Somerset Maugham ***
"Shouldn't I be doing that?" Tonks asked.
After her first week of training under the legendary Alastor 'Mad-Eye' Moody, she would have been glad to sit on her arse for the rest of her life. But as she watched him clunk around his kitchen, she felt a strange combination of guilt and annoyance.
"You worry about those reports," he muttered. "I'll take care of tea."
But Tonks ignored the paperwork spread out across the small scrubbed pine table, instead propping her chin on her hand and watching as he collected bits and bobs from shelves and cabinets.
It was so weird to be in Mad-Eye Moody's house. He was a notoriously private man, so she'd been shocked when he'd invited her back to his place for tea. Not that this was a social event by any means. Apparently he'd spent every Friday afternoon for the past three decades doing his week's worth of paperwork at his own kitchen table. Well, the Fridays he hadn't spent dodging hexes or questioning suspects or lying in hospital beds, anyway.
Man can't get a damned thing done in that chaos, he'd grumbled in regards to Level Two of the Ministry of Magic.
What had not surprised her were Moody's accommodations. They were as austere as the man himself: a small log cabin immersed in a wood of oak and birch, with a fireplace that was almost larger than his loo, which she had of course inspected first upon arriving. The house didn't appear to have more than two or three rooms total, with the kitchen doing double duty as a parlour. His possessions were few, and even fewer of them matched, yet everything was spotless and in its place.
Needless to say, Tonks didn't plan on ever inviting him back to her place. She wasn't sure his heart would withstand it, and that was saying something considering the fright she'd given him on Wednesday when she'd tripped over a pothole and nearly dropped a box of combustibles they'd just confiscated.
He turned around, tea tray in hand, and Tonks quickly shuffled through a few papers to hide the fact she'd been staring. "You afraid I'll slip a little something in yours?" she asked with a smirk. "Is that it?" So far he'd proven true to legend; she hadn't seen him drink from anything but a flask.
"No." The corner of his lips twitched. "But I do fancy this teapot."
Tonks made a show of pouting, though she couldn't deny the man had a point. "I could do your laundry," she suggested.
"Only own two sets of robes." He sat down across from her, carefully filling their teacups. "Only wear one."
Tonks took the cup nearest her and held it under her nose. For a man with only two sets of robes, he fancied surprisingly rich-smelling tea. As she added several spoonfuls of sugar, she idly wondered what his other set of robes looked like, and if they'd been made in the past century. "I do hope you wash your knickers."
He gave her his unamused look, one of the few for which he used both eyes.
Tonks was undeterred. "I'd offer to cook dinner for you," she said with a sly grin, "but then I'd have to slip you a little something. Put you out of your misery."
He did not join her merry chuckling. He merely took a quick sip of tea, black, dipped his quill, and began to scribble. "Don't even cook dinner for myself," he mumbled. "Tinned tomatoes, salt beef, and bread. Same for twenty-eight years."
"Sounds delicious," she said, although she didn't have much room to talk. She'd eaten a bowl of cereal for dinner every night that week, and once she'd almost fallen asleep in it. "Come on, there's got to be something."
But if there was, he wasn't talking.
"Dawlish said he smelled like owl droppings his entire first year of training," said Tonks.
"Wonder what his excuse is now," replied Moody.
"And Vance said she darned socks until her fingertips bled."
"That woman probably couldn't thread a needle at wandpoint."
"And Jones said—" Tonks broke off dramatically, wondering if she dared.
"What?" Moody kept right on scribbling. "What did Jones say?"
She sipped her tea, watching him carefully. "Oh, just that Shacklebolt kept her jaw aching so badly she couldn't eat anything but broth from a straw."
Mad-Eye Moody blushed.
Interesting. So there was a man under all that armor after all. Jones had said no such thing, of course, but Tonks went on, "Apparently he liked to have all his reports delivered orally. Nice and slow." She dropped her voice. "Over and over and over—"
"I told you," Moody interrupted her. "I don't believe in those silly traditions." He took a long sip of tea before continuing in a grumble. "Bloody waste of time, all that cooking and cleaning and darning nonsense. I don't need a house elf. I need competent and fully trained Aurors."
Tonks set her tea aside and leaned over the table. "And there's really nothing I can do for you while you train me?"
Moody stopped writing. He opened his gash of a mouth and closed it again just as quickly, and for a moment Tonks thought she'd gone too far. But then she caught his eye. Not the magical one, which was still trained on his paperwork, scanning rows and columns, but the real one. The dark one, and it was darker than ever. It traced a line from her neck to her cleavage, and Tonks realized there was something he wanted.
His gaze was gone almost as quickly. "Less talk and more work would be nice."
With a ticklish explosion of heat in her belly, Tonks realized she wanted it, too.
Getting Mad-Eye Moody to admit what he wanted was quite another thing. Tonks had done her fair share of eyelash-fluttering and cleavage-flashing and lap-sitting in her time, but something told her Moody would require a more subtle approach.
"I could polish your broomstick," she suggested as they kicked off the following Tuesday for a long, boring afternoon of writing altitude tickets.
Not that Moody's broomstick needed maintenance of any sort. Although scratched and dented in places, it gleamed in a rare ray of London sunlight, and the tail twigs were meticulously clipped. Moody merely raised one eyebrow while his magical eye darted to her own tail twigs, which looked as if she'd just flown through a gale.
Tonks grumpily spent that evening clipping them, but it wasn't long before she was back to pestering him for menial tasks. Yet everything seemed to backfire on her. One time she offered to carry his tray in the cafeteria and promptly dropped her own. Another time she rushed to hold a door for him and got the strap of her bag caught in it. She was admittedly a mess, and her newfound attraction to her mentor did not seem to be helping her predisposition to clumsiness.
Perhaps the most embarrassing was the time she'd mentioned that surely he had some missing shirt buttons that needed sewing on. As she'd asked, she'd toyed suggestively with one of her own, which, out of nowhere, popped off and pinged across the elevator floor and through the grates, lost forever. Although that one might have worked in her favor. Before Moody had turned to exit the elevator, he'd undeniably checked out the gaping fabric.
Mad-Eye Moody was every bit as stubborn as she was, it was true, and he was too independent for his own good.
Yet still Tonks did not give up. And when she received an owl from him at four-thirty one Thursday morning, telling her to dress smartly because a pair of smugglers were being brought in for questioning, she took advantage of the order.
Does the man ever sleep? she wondered, yawning, but she used the extra time that morning to dress as 'smartly' as her budget allowed and her girly side dared. And she even beat Moody into the office, so that when he arrived she was sitting in one of the chairs in an empty interrogation room, robes hanging open and feet propped up on the table to expose her legs, bare but for stockings beneath a pencil skirt.
"Just warming your chair for you," she said with an innocent smile.
Moody heaved an exasperated sigh, though his good eye unmistakably dropped from her face and scanned the length of her legs with interest. And when he spoke, his voice was huskier than usual. "You should know by now we don't sit on our arses in this department, sweet pea."
Tonks knew the term of endearment was meant as mockery, yet it did such funny things to her stomach that when she made to rise from the chair, her high heel wobbled beneath her.
Only this time, no harm came to her wardrobe. Or her person. Or the coffee cup perched precariously near the edge of the table. She did not stumble, break, or spill anything because Mad-Eye Moody's arm was around her in less than a heartbeat, steadying her.
He smelled fantastic. Tonks had never realized it before, but then she'd never been so close to him before. He smelled like the pine of his kitchen table and the spice of his rich tea, and his arms… well, a man with bad legs needed strong arms, she supposed, and his were undoubtedly strong. His arm felt thick and wiry with muscle where it circled her waist. This close his ravaged face was a wonder to her; each missing chunk was a testament to his honor, to his sacrifice, and she gasped as she realized that she desperately wanted to kiss him. And more, so much more.
Moody must have mistaken her gasp for disgust because he let go almost immediately. "I said dress 'smartly'," he groused. "Not 'life-threateningly.' Put on some practical shoes and meet me in interrogation room two."
As soon as he left and Tonks regained her composure, she grabbed her 'smartest' pair of boots from her locker, pulled them on, and stomped her way down the hall.
And then it hit her, and a shiver ran down her spine.
She was pushing her luck, she knew it. Moody patiently withstood a surprising amount of cheekiness on her part, but even Nymphadora Tonks was not a bottomless well of clever, albeit poorly executed, ideas. But if there was one thing in her life that she treated as sacrosanct — if there was one thing that she kept more meticulously maintained than anyone else she knew, including Mad-Eye Moody — it was her boots.
It was Friday afternoon. The tea steamed in their cups. Moody scribbled at their paperwork.
Tonks put down her own quill, lifted her bag from the back of her chair, and began to make a show of removing items. Folded newspaper. Tin of boot polish. Boar-hair brush. Buffing cloth.
Moody heaved one of his laborious sighs. "For the last time, woman. I don't want or need a bloody—"
"House elf," Tonks finished for him. "Yes, I know. But you do need a boot shine."
He shifted uncomfortably, knowing she had him. Knowing it was true. And for a moment, Tonks was sorry she'd mentioned it. She understood. Why would he waste time polishing a single boot? Everyone's eyes would just go straight to the wooden leg instead.
His shirtsleeves were rolled up, and she watched the muscles in his forearm work as he tightened and relaxed his fist, something she'd seen him do in moments of indecision or discomfort. Then he raised that hand and pinched the bridge of his nose. "If I let you do this one thing, just this once…."
"I promise I'll drop the tradition thing. For good." If she played her cards right, she'd only need once.
He paused for one second, two, three. Then, unbelievably, he scooted his chair back, bent over, and started unlacing his boot.
"Ah-ah," Tonks said. "You really are mad if you think I'm going to smell your stinky feet while I work."
The corner of Moody's lip twitched, though she couldn't tell if it was with amusement or annoyance. She thought he might tell her to forget the entire thing, but then he resituated his chair until both his boot and his wooden leg faced out from the table but still left him room to write. "Be quick about it," he muttered.
Tonks flashed him a grin and went to work.
He would have had an excellent view right down her shirt from this angle, but he didn't look. Or at least Tonks didn't catch him looking. The scratching of his quill and shuffling of papers was steady. For a long while, she was pleased just to work on the boot to that sound.
Tonks had always found it a soothing task, rubbing and rubbing the polish into the hide, adding some water as streaks appeared, and buffing them away until only a bright sheen remained, brighter with every tiny circle. Despite the spots and worn places, Moody's boot was made of some of the finest dragonhide she'd ever seen. It made sense that he'd want a boot that was made to last, especially since that one boot carried most of his weight.
"You not done yet, woman?" he grunted at last, though a glimpse from his magic eye gave him all the answer he needed. She'd been able to see her reflection in the dragonhide for the past five minutes.
Tonks swallowed a lump in her throat. If anyone else had called her 'woman', she would have hexed them bloody. Somehow, when Moody said the word, her nipples tightened, and she became instantly wet.
"Good things take time, old man," she shot back with a brassy confidence she didn't feel. She didn't want this to be over. She wanted it to be more.
"And we'll be at this paperwork until midnight if you don't get up here and help me."
"All right, all right, keep your hair on," she muttered, wiping her hands and packing away her supplies. But when she went to unroll the leg of his trousers, her fingers suddenly had a mind of their own. Instead of unrolling, she rolled it — up over the colorless hair that dusted his bulging calf muscle, up over his knee.
The scratching of quill on parchment stopped, but Moody didn't say anything.
With her gaze darting between his exposed leg and his averted face, Tonks laid her hands on either side of his calf, testing the size and firmness of the muscle. It jumped slightly beneath her touch. So tight, so strong, but then it would have to be, to make up for the other. The hair tickled her palms, but the skin beneath was smooth, so smooth and warm.
Neither of Moody's eyes would meet hers, but she saw his throat work on a swallow, and when he spoke, his voice was raspier than ever. "What are you doing?"
Her own throat was dry. "Your leg is all tense," she answered defensively. She massaged the bulk of the muscle in her small hands. "Doesn't that feel good?"
Tonks ran her hands all over the bared skin. She kneaded the strong calf muscle and felt him flex into the touch. Then she couldn't resist. She slipped her hands up, up beneath his rolled-up trousers leg and scratched her nails over his thigh, just above his knee.
She looked up at him from beneath her lashes. "Seems that you're tense here, too," she whispered. Her fingers worked beneath his trousers leg, rubbing and massaging in circles as she'd done to his boot, gradually moving upwards.
He laid down his quill, and she could see his forearm working, that fist tightening and relaxing almost in rhythm with her strokes.
When Moody didn't tell her to stop, she shouldered at his knees, spreading them apart so she could move closer between them. She slid her hands out of his trousers leg and laid one on each knee, rubbing over the fabric. She moved her palms in long, firm strokes up and down his thighs. She couldn't believe she was feeling up her mentor. She couldn't believe her fingertips were inches from his hips, from his crotch. She couldn't believe he wasn't stopping her.
Triumphantly, she noted the bulge in his trousers. She scraped at his thighs with her nails then, and Moody seemed to be holding his breath. She even saw — could it be? — a spot of moisture visible on the fabric, the ridge of his cockhead just beneath.
Tonks wanted to touch him there, so badly. She burned to feel that hard flesh in her fingers, and she ached so much between her own legs that she could barely resist the urge to rut against her heel, tucked beneath her. Slowly she moved upward with each stroke of her palm until her fingertips just barely brushed the tip of his erection.
Moody's hand suddenly grabbed hers. Her heart pounded, her ears full of fuzz. Had she gone too far? She prayed for him to press her hand against his length. But he just squeezed her hand, and when he spoke, his voice seemed sad.
"Time to get back to work," he said, shaking his leg until the supple fabric unrolled itself, pooling around his now gleaming boot.
Maybe it was a good thing Moody had stopped her. Tonks felt awkward enough around him come Monday. She couldn't imagine how much worse it would have been if she'd gone as far as she wanted to. Part of her was also angry, though she knew there was no one to be angry with but herself. She couldn't blame Moody for being professional. Only for being stubborn, and it wasn't like she had room to talk in that area.
As far as asking him for tasks, however, and for teasing him, she relented. She threw herself headlong into their work, although she received no more praise from Moody for being conscientious than she had rebuke for being cheeky.
If he had his way, he wouldn't feel at all, she thought.
Then, midweek, he took her to her first Code 56. "Greyback, I'd bet anything," Moody muttered while Tonks retched, but it hardly mattered who he suspected because the Beast Division of the DRCMC had their hands tied in red tape by noon.
"You did that on purpose," she said, the moment Diggory swaggered out of Moody's office.
To her surprise, his office door slammed behind her, so hard that it rattled the inbox that hung on the wall next to it. The next second, Moody was clunking towards her, his wand still in his hand and his face red and both eyes pinning her in place. Her fists tightened at her sides, but she refused to budge.
"You're damn right I did it on purpose," he growled, getting right up in her face. "Past time for it, too. You think I don't remember how it is? I know it's all about the excitement and adventure for you youngsters, and damn the grumpy old man who won't give you anything real or anything fun to do or play your little games—"
"I'm talking here!" Moody roared. But then it seemed he couldn't go on.
"Maybe people should play harmless games from time to time," Tonks countered, feeling her own face flame. Maybe it's so we don't forget we're human and end up jaded as you, old man, she wanted to say. Instead, she exploded with the next thought in her head, inappropriate and untimely as it was. "You want me!" She was shaking, but she didn't know at this point if it was from anger at Moody or lingering horror over what she'd seen that morning or the ever-present nervous desire she felt every time she was this close to him. "I saw it."
He grinded his teeth for a long moment, and for once it was his magical eye that dropped to her chest, as though against his will. But it was only for a brief second, and then he was shaking his head. "I've wanted a lot of things in my life."
"I want you, too."
Moody's face softened in what could only be pity, and Tonks couldn't bear it. She didn't even ask his leave to go; she just turned around and grabbed the doorknob. But his palm came down on the door, holding it closed.
"I'm responsible for making sure you live through your training, Nymphadora," he said, his voice quiet. "And train you well enough to live through your career."
She felt tears sting her eyes and was glad he was behind her, where he couldn't see them. "You're not responsible for everything. And don't call me Nymphadora." She jerked open the door, not even caring if she sent him stumbling on his wooden leg in her haste to escape.
Tonks didn't wait for Moody to go for the tea tray. As soon as she Flooed into his kitchen that Friday afternoon, she began digging around in her bag for her stack of reports. She ignored the nagging voice that said that she shouldn't be doing this and the smugger voice that told her she could have done it in the Ministry instead of here.
She liked the smell of his house, she told herself. That's why she hadn't done it in the Ministry.
She pulled the stack out and set it on the kitchen table. "There's mine, done already," she announced. "Did them all last night. And today's I'll do over breakfast tomorrow."
Moody's mouth tightened, but he didn't speak.
"It's been a long week," Tonks added. "So if there's nothing else, sir, I'd like to go right back through that Floo and end it with a long, hot bath." And forget about paperwork and werewolf attacks and outdated hazing traditions and my stupid crush on a man who wants lots of things but won't allow himself any of them.
"You can draw me one."
"I can—" Her voice caught in her throat. She hadn't misheard him. Had she? Leave it to Moody to take her up on an off-hand remark rather than all the things she'd intentionally offered, and when she least expected it. "—what?"
He shrugged out of his robes and hung them over the back of his chair, casually, as though this was all part of their routine. Then he sat down and started to remove his boot and sock. "You can draw me a bath," he said. "Hot as you can make it."
Was this some type of training exercise? Should she check him for signs of Polyjuice? She didn't see how he could be anyone but Moody; the wards on his house were no joke. But was she supposed to say no; is that how this was supposed to go?
Well, screw that, she thought, heading at once for the loo. Ridiculously, she realized her bag was still over her shoulder when she got there. She set it on the vanity, sparing a glance in the mirror, which was foggy with age around the edges. Beneath her purple fringe, she looked as tired as she felt from their exhausting week, but a nervous buzzing had also begun under her skin.
He'd said to draw him a bath, so that's exactly what she did.
His tub was large — half the size of the loo itself — and lined with railing so he could get in and out of it using only his arms. The pine scent was stronger in here, and as the hot water ran, Tonks lifted his bar of soap to her nose and remembered how his arm had felt around her.
"That should be good," Moody said from behind her.
Tonks jumped and turned to find him standing in the door to the loo, barefoot, hands in his pockets. She hadn't heard him clunking over the running of the water. She turned off the tap although the tub was only a quarter full. "I'll just—"
Moody had given her plenty of orders in the past few months, but never in that voice. And two words in that voice had her already soaking her knickers. She stood there, eyes unblinking, as he started to unbutton his shirt. Her heart felt like it was somewhere around the back of her throat. Had she taken a wrong Floo turn into some alternate reality? "I'll stay," she agreed.
'You'll look,' he didn't say, but when the shirt came off, he didn't have to. Her eyes went at once to his chest, ravaged by lumpy white scar tissue and dusted with the barest hint of colorless chest hair. His arms were strong, and she watched the muscles in them work as he carefully folded the shirt and laid it on the vanity beside her bag. Then his hands went to his trousers.
He was unbuttoning them. Stepping out of them. Bending to pick them up and folding them just as he'd done his shirt. Standing there in nothing but his pants.
Mad-Eye Moody was undressing in front of her. And he looked no more ridiculous than any other man did while undressing. Just braver. As he stepped forward, he ran his palm over one of the thicker gouges in his abdomen.
The message was clear. Look. See. This is what this job does to you when you're more focused on silly traditions than on staying alive. Yet she didn't think Moody, for all his wisdom and experience, had it quite right, either. Would she change her mind, forty years from now, when she was carved up like a Christmas roast and missing appendages? Or would she live long enough for all that? Aurors usually didn't last to retirement. Moody and a few others were the exceptions. Not the rule.
"I'll need to sit for a moment," he said, nodding to the toilet, which she was blocking. Tonks put the lid down for him and moved aside as best she could in the small space, but his bare arm brushed against her as they switched places, making that buzzing in her veins louder. He sat long enough to remove his prosthesis and prop it against the pine-paneled wall, wood on wood. The he grasped the edge of the vanity and rose on his one good leg, pushed his fingers under the waistband of his pants, and let them fall to his ankle.
Moody stood before her, naked. His cock was flaccid, perhaps in self-consciousness, but Tonks had rarely been so wet. Her whole body sang with the trust he'd shown her, with anticipation. She wanted to throw her arms around him, but she stood frozen and watched as he grabbed the railing and lowered himself into the tub with nothing but those strong arms.
"Perfect," he whispered as he sank into the water. She'd added a heating spell, so that it was steaming. "Now." He rested his arms along the sides and leaned back. "You'll strip."
Tonks felt the words like a touch. "I'll strip," she nearly panted, yanking her t-shirt over her head in one motion and tossing is aside. She clawed her bra off, nearly ripped the buttons off her jeans in her haste to get them open, and pushed them at once with her knickers to her feet, toeing out of her shoes and socks and kicking the whole mess somewhere behind her.
Moody licked his lips. "You'll join me."
Fire exploded in her belly. "I'll join you," she agreed eagerly.
But as she moved to step into the tub, Moody gave her a lopsided smile. "You'll grab ahold of that rail first so you don't kill us both," he said.
"I'll—" Tonks burst into laughter; she couldn't say if it was from excitement or from the fact that, despite the smile, it was just such a Moody think to say. "Yes," she replied. She bent over and grabbed the handrail with one hand, the other hand grasping the side of the tub. And then she eased herself down into the hot, shallow water, straddling Moody's thighs.
He wasn't flaccid anymore, and she couldn't help but stare down in pride as he saluted her.
"You'll kiss me." He said it very quietly, and the commanding tone was gone. It was almost a question. His hands stayed at the sides of the tub, waiting for her to make the first move.
She did. She lowered herself, nestling his hard length between her legs and sliding along it as she took his face in her hands. "Oh, I'm going to do more than kiss you, old man," she said, pleased when his eyelids drooped at the suggestion. Though her breasts were right in front of him, Moody's eyes were fixed on her parted lips, right until the moment they touched his.
And then any intention of going slow was forgotten.
Tonks angled her mouth against his, burying her fingers in Moody's hair at the same moment his hands went to her arse, pulling her more snugly against his erection. Her tongue rolled against his, wet and heavy, and his hips rolled up in response. He made the most wonderful sounds, long moans and breathy grunts, sounds she'd dreamed he would make. But they were so much sexier than any dream, and suddenly she couldn't stand to not have his mouth elsewhere.
She broke the kiss, rocking against him in the steaming water, and brought his head to her breast. He went eagerly, mouthing at the nipple and sucking it hard between his lips, pulling it into a tender peak before moving to do the same to the other. "So good," she groaned. Moody answered with a groan of his own and slid his fingers between her legs. She cried out, arching her back to get them where she wanted them, but he merely rubbed at her outer lips.
When she whined, he chuckled around a nipple, and she realized he was teasing her. The chuckling stopped abruptly when she reached between them and grasped his shaft in her fist, sliding it through the firm circle of her fingers. He pumped his hips into the motion, the water beginning to lap at the sides of the tub.
Moody gritted his teeth, hissing as she thumbed the underside of the head. "You'll ride me, woman," he rasped, "now, right now."
Tonks shook her head even as she lifted herself to her knees as best as she could in the tight space and guided him to her entrance. "I'll fuck you," she corrected him, and with a growl and a single quick motion, Moody thrust himself halfway inside her. She pulled back and lowered herself down, all the way, until their pubic bones met. "Wanted this… so long," she said, gyrating her hips with his length fully buried.
"Yeah?" Moody whispered in her ear, teeth plucking at the lobe. "Show me."
She didn't need his encouragement. She began a slow tempo, sighing at the slick, tight glide of him inside her. His mouth went back to her breasts, his hands on her arse speeding her motions. Tonks threw her head back and lost herself to it. Distantly she could hear Moody grunting, feel the heat of his breath against her breasts. The water splashed over the edge, but she only rode him harder. She could feel her orgasm building and grabbed at him, holding his head tightly against her. He was pounding back at her now, shouting wordlessly. She felt him spill inside her but just kept going until every muscle tightened and her heart clenched to bursting in her chest. And then her body let go in spasm after glorious spasm.
The steam was gone, but the water was still hot when Tonks collapsed on top of him, clenching around his softening cock.
"That was—" She took a deep breath. "—so much more exciting than paperwork."
Moody chuckled. "Never liked the stuff much myself," he admitted, his palm soothing up and down her back. "Why do you think I save it all for one afternoon a week?"
She lifted her head, smiling. "I hope you don't expect me to go halfers on yours now that's mine done early."
His hand stilled on her back, and he stared up at the ceiling. Then, quietly, he conceded, "I suppose you could make the tea."
Tonks splashed him, all over his scarred, stubborn face.
Moody sputtered, shaking water from his grizzled grey hair. "What the hell, woman?"
"Do you know how many wardrobe malfunctions you could have spared me if you'd let me make tea for you in the first place?"
But for all their levity, what they'd done hung heavy between them. Tonks never wanted to leave that tub, but the water inevitably cooled. She swallowed heavily. "I don't suppose this is traditional mentor-trainee behavior," she said, giving him an easy way out. An easy way to say it was wrong, that they shouldn't do it again.
Moody only tugged her closer, the corner of his lip twitching. "I think you know how I feel about silly traditions."