Title: From Memory

Author: tarotgal

Fandom: Harry Potter

Rating: G

Pairings: mentions of previous slashy pairings

Disclaimer: JKR's, not mine. My words are just for fun.

Summary: Oliver's under the weather and also has a touch of nostalgia.

Notes: Happy Birthday, x_posed_again!


From Memory


A well-known Scottish proverb stated that 'a cold needs the cook as much as the doctor.' Right now, Oliver Wood would have been happy just to settle for one or the other.


Having woken up with a wretched flu that morning, it took all that Oliver had in him just to get out of bed before noon. His head cloudy and nose stuffed, he dragged himself across the bleak bachelor's pad with a blanket up around his shoulders. He shuffled in stocking feet to the kitchenette and switched the burner on. The sound of water striking his metal teakettle made him shiver, and he was glad when he set it over the flame to boil.


Then he turned and coughed into his fist so long and so hard it doubled him right over. And when he went to straighten up, he had no comforting hand on his back and no one to insist he go right back to bed. The other guys on his team found the single life to be so glamorous, but it was times like these that made him wish for a little something more.


Oliver retrieved a mug from the cupboard and held it in his hands a moment. He couldn't say that it was his favorite mug, because it wasn't exactly his. It had been Percy Weasley's when Percy had lived there with him. It was bright white with little black words printed all around. They were long, complex words, the sort one used when one wanted to sound high and mighty. Oliver had since learned a few of them, but most just reminded him of Percy. And that made him smile, apart from the memory of how he'd kicked Percy out, quick as anything, when Percy began to trust the Ministry over Dumbledore and his family. The kettle began whistling.


Step 1: Pour a teaspoon of honey and some boiled water into a mug.


Oliver patted his hip, realizing he had no pockets with tissues in his pajamas. He made do with a napkin from the holder on the counter to blow his nose. Then he stirred the honey and water together.


Step 2: Add several tablespoons of a good, strong malt whiskey.


He added the whiskey, which came from a place just a few kilometers from where he grew up and where his family still lived. When he was a kid, his mother had made him hot toddies when he caught colds that Pepper-up couldn't touch. He knew the recipe by heart. But now that he was older, and on his own, he could add more whiskey than usual without judgment. And this morning, he took a swig out of the bottle before he poured two whole spoonfuls in.


Step 3: Fill the cup with more boiling water and put in a cinnamon stick.


Oliver filled the cup up as quickly as he could, then he grabbed another napkin to sneeze into. The bout of sneezing lasted longer than expected, and he regretted the time it took him to finally get the cinnamon stick into the mug to sit and leave its flavor. But he wasn't feeling very quick with anything he was doing today. His teammates would have had a good laugh at the sight of him like this.


Step 4: Let it sit for a few minutes before removing the stick.


Oliver leaned back against the counter to wait. He knew he probably should have brewed some Pepper-up or some nice clear soup, but he only had the energy to make one thing. And a hot toddy seemed like a nice mix of the two.


Step 5: Stir and add a pinch of ground nutmeg.


Sniffling and shivering with cold, Oliver took the mug back to bed with him. He wrapped a thick patchwork quilt around his shoulders. Marcus Flint had liked it so much at the store that Oliver had bought it for him as a present. But after they broke it off, Flint had left it behind. And now the patchwork, which had once reminded him of their rocky past, only served as a reminder that Flint had left him behind, too.


Oliver savored the warm drink against his scratchy throat, but mostly he just liked how it soothed away the tension and blurred the memories. A couple more of these and he'd be feeling just fine, that was for sure.