This is for the true chocolate lovers. Mary, I am glad you love
chocolate. If you don't like coffee, at least, loving chocolate keeps you
out of the ranks of the barbarians. [grin]
This requires a 1 1/2 quart pot as you cannot make this hot chocolate for just one mugfull.
Put a quart of half and half, not milk, in the pot and start heating it. Once it is hot, but not boiling, add 4 tablespoons of Dutch process cocoa, it will be sold under many names, but it will always say it is Dutch process or maybe Dutched. If you can see, the cocoa powder actually has a bit of a reddish tinge due to the processing.
Wisk this until it is dissolved and start adding sugar, start with ahalf cup and taste, you'll probably want more. You may add more of the cocoa powder, too, but remember, it is raw chocolate, no sugar, so it won't taste good without sweetening.
Just after you add the sugar, add a two inch length of a vanilla bean you have cut in half, lengthwise.
Don't boil the mixture, but bring it to a simmer and hold there for five minutes. While it is simmering, get out your bag of miniature marshmallows and some whipping cream. Whip the cream. Take the cocoa off the fire, allow to cool just a bit, so it does not scald your tongue too badly and fold in the whipped cream using a rubber spatula. Ladle into mugs and top each with a healthy layer of miniature marshmallows. Allow them to half melt, about a minute, and drink.
Now, for a truly decadant twist, put a shot of peppermint schnapps or even Creme de Menthe in the pot before ladleing the cocoa out. Alternatively, you could add cinnamon schnapps or, for everyone but Mary, none for her, some coffee liqueur like Kahlua or Tia Maria.