Severus was alone in his potions room in his office, looking down at a deep crimson potion in the cauldron. It had taken him a couple of days to get the correct potency but he was pretty sure that this strength wouldn’t kill her, although the effects would undoubtedly be interesting. He had always stayed firm by the belief that Malfoy was good for something, and it turned out that one of his failed Polyjuice potions had made a powerful poison instead. Convenient for him, although it would have been less so had Malfoy decided to sample his potion before hand. He summoned a flask to him from a cupboard close by and filled it with the poison before exiting quickly and making his way to the kitchens; he had a favour to ask of the house-elves.
Remus’ eyes flickered open and he was staring up at the ceiling.
“You don’t have to get up for another ten minutes.” His alarm clock informed him from the bedside table before yawning and going back to sleep.
Remus shook his head at the sleepy clock before slipping out from beneath the sheets and going to get ready for another day back at school. He had only been back for two days and yet he was already exhausted, although he wasn’t sure how that had happened. His fear of the Slytherins had been completely unfounded though, Minerva’s threats against them each time she saw one of them raise a wand as if to hex him in a corridor seemed to be enough to keep them away from him for good and their rudeness in lessons was nothing he couldn’t deal with himself, even if he wasn’t quite as intimidating as some of his colleagues.
Today was to be the day that he explained to Harry about his wandless magic and he would offer to teach him it if he was willing to learn, and he knew that he probably was despite the fact that he was already doing two other extracurricular subjects in Animagi and Apparation lessons. Wandless magic would just give him more hassle and more to learn, and he was already determined on learning to duel properly as well. The thing was that Harry had already used wandless magic and by now he had probably realised that it was he, not Snape who had stopped the potions master from slamming backwards into a stone wall. He ran his fingers unconsciously through his hair before he realised what he had done.
He sighed as he quickly robed himself and went down to breakfast.
“Good morning, Remus.” Filius greeted him warmly as he sat down, “You’re looking better today.”
“I feel better today.” He said to him and Minerva who were sat in their usual seats on the staff table.
“Fabulous, so you’re ready to deal with Slytherins in your first lesson then?” Minerva asked him.
“I suppose so.” Remus said, sighing.
“Order meeting tonight at 10, Dumbledore’s office.” Minerva said to the two of them quietly once Heilia had passed them.
“Why?” Remus asked.
“I think he wants to attempt to discover how He Who Must Not Be Named found out that Severus was a spy.” She said in a voice which was barely audible. Remus and Filius nodded to show they had heard what she said. Remus opened his mouth to put forward a theory but in the busy room he decided against it.
“You’re looking unusually cheerful today.” Remus noted as Severus sat down next to them and started to nibble at a bacon sandwich. Filius, Remus and Minerva watched him and noticed immediately that he was sat in a position where he could easily see Sybil.
“What are –” Filius opened his mouth to ask but a moment later there was a thud at the other end of the table.
“Sybil!” Heilia and Sabina cried at the other end of the table as Trelawney fell off her chair and onto the floor. Minerva, Filius and Remus all looked at Severus and bit back laughter as muttering broke out throughout the hall. Dumbledore rose to his feet and glanced down the table at the four colleagues before attending to Sybil.
“Oh my…” Minerva said, cupping her hand over her mouth in an attempt to stifle her laughter which threatened to turn into hysterics at any moment.
Sybil was lying unconscious on the floor. Her hair had mostly fallen out, leaving her mostly bald and her eyes which were wide open where totally white. They looked odd set on the now green skin of her face and overall she looked rather funny, at least to Minerva, Severus, Remus and Filius who knew she was not fatally poisoned.
“Severus, if you would be so kind as to take Sybil to the hospital wing and explain to Poppy what happened.” Dumbledore said, fixing the potions master with his gaze. It was clear to most at the staff table what had happened to her since Albus had called upon Severus, who was not stood anywhere near her to carry her to the hospital wing.
Severus sighed as he conjured a stretcher for the woman and levitated her onto it before marching along to the hospital wing with her in tow. He considered covering her with a sheet so that the students would not see her but not only would that mean that Sybil wasn’t humiliated when she found out what had happened but everyone would also think she was dead. As amusing as everyone’s reactions would surely be if they thought he had killed her he thought it would probably be better not to go down that route.
Harry watched as Professor Trelawney was taken out of the room by Snape and she looked as stiff as a board. He couldn’t help but wonder what on earth had happened to her or why it was Snape who had been picked to take her to the hospital wing.
He didn’t question this as he got up from his seat and walked along to his first lesson of the day which was Transfiguration. He was still doing well in transfiguration and was easily better than the rest of the class, but that was due to Professor McGonagall taking some time out of each lesson to come over to his work and if he had succeeded in transfiguring whatever it was then she would teach him something else which was a bit more advanced. This didn’t matter because everyone else around him generally assumed that his spell had just gone wrong, not realising that he was doing something else completely. His mind kept wandering to the hospital wing with Trelawney though; he couldn’t help but wonder just what happened to her although he had a strong suspicion that Snape had poisoned her.
“So, Professor, do you know just what was in this poison?” Poppy asked him as he brought Trelawney into the hospital wing.
“I am afraid not.” Severus answered, “I only brought her to the wing on Dumbledore’s orders.”
“I see.” She said, although she wasn’t pleased with his response. What had she expected, a confession that he had poisoned her? Not likely. “Will you be staying with Sybil?”
“Most certainly not, although I despise the children, I would not entrust their lamentable potions lessons to anyone else.” Severus said.
For fear of success? Poppy thought but didn’t voice her opinions as she allowed the man to leave the hospital wing.
“If he hasn’t poisoned her then I will eat my hat.” Poppy said coolly to Heilia who was lying in a bed close to her. She had successfully been injured the day before by a bludger during a Quidditch session with some Slytherins who had become irritated by her presence and sent two at her at once. It was on the headmasters orders that she attend the sessions of all Quidditch teams, although she had a sneaking suspicion that it was only the Gryffindor team he was really bothered about. Nevertheless she had gone out there and done her best to keep an eye on the dreadful students and how had she been rewarded? Two broken ribs and a punctured lung.
“And I’ll gladly monitor the next Slytherin Quidditch practice.” Said Heilia. “Of course he did it, why else would Albus send him with her?”
“Do you know what this is?” Poppy said to Heilia who shook her head. “The perfect chance to get Severus Snape.” Heilia smiled.
“What did you have in mind?” She asked.
“Tell Sabina to meet us in the staffroom later on. We’ll start planning then.” Poppy said.
“Excellent, but who else can we enlist against him?” Heilia asked, “Argus could be useful.”
“Yes, and what about Remus? He doesn’t like him.” Poppy said.
“True, but I don’t think he’s likely to plot against him either.” Heilia said and Poppy looked slightly disappointed. “And there’s no way that Minerva or Filius are going to help.”
“Do you think Sybil is as stupid as she acts?” Poppy asked suddenly.
“I’m not sure… Even if she is then we can always use her as a useful repellent…” Heilia said thoughtfully.
“Excellent.” Poppy smiled. “You’re going to regret the day you crossed half the teaching staff Severus Snape.”
“You do know that Snape left about five minutes ago, right?” Heilia asked and Poppy shot her a scything look.
“Shut up, Heilia.” She said, with a slight smile.
Sybil Trelawney opened her eyes to find herself lying down in the hospital wing. At the other end of the room Poppy was walking around, seeing to various other patients and occasionally talking to Heilia who was really well enough to teach again but the first year Slytherins were her last lesson so it was no real wonder that she was choosing to feign illness.
She was not pleased. Severus Snape had poisoned her, despite her efforts to be nice to the man. Admittedly the efforts were made for ulterior motives but that was irrelevant. The man had been so nasty to her in the past and she had seen terrible things concerning him in the crystal ball that she just had to get into his living quarters and see what he had hidden in there. She had assumed that should she be nice to him then he would probably admit her into his living space but she had been incorrect. Now he had poisoned her in an attempt to rid himself of her and she was damned if that was going to work.
She had heard talk between Heilia and Poppy whilst she was in a dreamlike state between sleep and consciousness and although she hadn’t heard all of it she had heard enough. They were starting an alliance against Severus Snape and they were going to ask her, Argus and Sabina for their assistance. Although she wasn’t after an alliance against him and wanted only to see the hidden part of him kept locked away in his living space she would gladly join. Perhaps they too would desire to see just what he had hidden in that little space in the dungeons that was his own.
“Professor Trelawney, are you alright?!” Came the shrill voice of Lavender Brown, one of her sixth year students.
“Yes, I am fine my dear. I have been seeing something like this in the crystal ball for quite some time.” Sybil replied to the girl who was joined a moment later by her friend, Parvati.
“But your face, it’s green!” Parvati cried.
“And you have no hair!” Said Lavender.
“I am aware of that my child, however I will recover shortly and will be teaching again once more within a matter of days.” Sybil replied.
“Is there anything I can do for you, Professor?” Lavender asked her.
“Yes, bring me a crystal ball to occupy myself with whilst I am recuperating.” She said to the girl.
“Of course, Professor!” Parvati said and the two girls disappeared from the room, returning around fifteen minutes later with a crystal ball.
“Thank you girls.” Sybil said to them, “Now if you would leave a Seer to her gift.”
“Certainly, Professor.” Said Parvati.
“Get well soon!” Said Lavender before the two of them left the hospital wing.
Such nice girls, a pity they’re going to die in a freak chess accident. Sybil thought as she stared into the crystal ball but saw nothing but cloud. My Inner Eye must have been poisoned also. She thought as she set the ball on her bedside table, knowing that if she could not at least use it to See then she could throw it at Snape’s sneering face should he enter the hospital wing.
“So your poisoning went well then, Severus?” Minerva asked him as the staff sat down for lunch. They had all had a stressful set of lessons that morning and they were glad for the rest.
“Oh yes,” Severus smiled as he took a sip of tea. “She should be right off me now.”
“And she’s also a healthy shade of green.” Filius pointed out.
“That’s an added bonus.” Severus explained. “And all to think that it was mostly a pathetic Polyjuice potion made by Malfoy, the boy does have some uses after all!”
“Don’t remind me of Malfoy please!” Filius complained, “I had to teach him this morning and he was a nightmare! He kept hexing Harry continually.”
“I see no problem there.” Severus said calmly. It was one of his wishes to have the chance to curse Potter continually himself, even if he couldn’t do it then at least someone else was.
“I do. Potter blocked them all and the more he blocked the worse they became. In the end Malfoy shot the Reductor curse at him.” Filius explained.
“What happened?” Remus asked him, trying not to let the worry that Harry had been blown into several pieces affect his voice.
“Oh nothing much. Harry reversed it (using an excellent spell I might add) and it hit Malfoy.” Filius said, “It taught him not to hex Harry of course, but there was blood all over my classroom after that and Mr Malfoy’s arm soared across the room, hitting Miss Brown in the face.”
“I would put money on Sybil telling Miss Brown that she knew she would be hit in the face with a severed arm today.” Minerva said.
“She’ll be sat there in the hospital wing with a crystal ball in her lap telling anyone who’ll listen about how Severus is going to be attacked by various Divination equipment.” Remus said.
“I do not doubt it.” Filius said. “I still don’t understand why Malfoy took Defence Against the Dark Arts, only to walk out at the beginning of the first lesson.”
“Maybe he didn’t like the class; it is most of the D.A. after all.” Minerva suggested.
“Or maybe he wanted to attempt to humiliate you and try and convince other students to leave the class as well.” Filius suggested.
“The mere fact that it was Malfoy leaving the room would suggest that everyone else was thoroughly determined to stay in their seats.” Severus commented.
“Quite true.” Minerva said. “I really do not know then, just be happy that he left your class and he’s the only one in the whole school that has.” She said to Remus who nodded.
“Are you going to ask him about wandless magic tonight then?” She asked and Remus nodded.
“I’ve thought about it and I’ve decided that’s probably the best time to do it. He’ll only have had Apparation lessons so he won’t be too tired and surely he realises that he used wandless magic on Severus yesterday with.” Remus said.
“Really?” Filius asked Severus who nodded.
“I was showing him some Legilimency to help him learn Occlumency and the boy pushed me right out of his head and I flew across the room.” Severus said coolly, “He flung his arm out looking mildly horrified and I stopped in midair. He dropped his arm to his side and I dropped to the floor.”
“Impressive.” Filius murmured.
“I suppose.” Severus said, not wanting to acknowledge that he had been rather impressed with Harry’s magic.
“So since when have you been teaching him Legilimency?” Minerva asked him as she took a packet of crisps from the basket which floated past her.
“Since I foolishly allowed the boy to break into my mind to see how it is when he’s attacking.” Severus explained.
“Well that was just a one off.” Filius said.
“I only wish.” Severus muttered, “Naturally Potter had to be good at it, I told Dumbledore and he wants me to spend another two nights a week with him teaching him Legilimency.”
“You sound thrilled.” Remus smiled.
“Oh yes.” Severus muttered. “So now I’m teaching him Occlumency on Tuesday and Friday and Legilimency on Wednesday and Saturday. So much fun.”
“I thought Harry was keeping Saturdays free.” Filius said absently.
“He was until he showed skill in Legilimency, unless he wants to start working until midnight just so he has a free Saturday then he can bloody well put up with and be grateful I’m spending my time teaching him.” Severus snapped.
“You ought to be pleased; when he shows skill in Legilimency then it will reflect on you, being his teacher.” Filius said.
“Yes and his failure in Occlumency reflects on me as well. I’d rather not have the reflection of his success and not have to put up with him.” Severus scowled as he glared at the sandwich on his plate, as if daring it to ridicule his teaching. “What’s wrong with them?” He asked, noticing the fact that Poppy and Sabina were glaring at him from down the table.
“I think they might have caught onto the fact that you poisoned Sybil.” Minerva said.
“I think just about everyone realised that by now.” Remus said lightly, ignoring the glare that Snape sent at him.
“Oh shut up, Lupin.” Snape muttered. “They’re conspiracising against me, I know it.”
“Is that even a word?” Filius asked mildly.
“Probably not.” Severus said, not moving his eyes from the two women.
“For god’s sake, stop being so paranoid!” Remus said when he didn’t move his eyes.
“I’ll stop being so paranoid when you stop coming out with muggle phrases like ‘for god’s sake’. That boy hasn’t half turned you into a muggle, Lupin.” Severus said and Remus raised an eyebrow.
“First muggle ever to teach at Hogwarts then.” Filius noted.
“They’re plotting… I can tell.” Severus said.
“I’m sure lots of people are plotting against you, Severus.” Minerva said, sounding quite exasperated.
“They are?” Severus asked, looking up at her with an alarmed look on his face.
“If you can prove they’re plotting against you then I’ll believe it.” Filius said.
“What do you want, blueprints of my office in their rooms?” Severus snapped.
“That would be quite conclusive I believe.” Filius said and Minerva and Remus smiled.
“Right that’s it, I’m going to brew more poison, just in case.” Severus said, glancing at Sabina and Poppy. Minerva laughed but didn’t comment.
“Don’t forget the Order meeting at ten.” Minerva said to him.
“As if I could forget that. The speculation as to how Voldemort found out I was a spy, what fun!” He said with mock enthusiasm as he marched off.
“Do you think they are plotting against him?” Remus asked as he took a packet of crisps.
“Definitely.” Minerva said.
“Do you think we should help them?” Filius asked.
“No, Sybil will help them.” Minerva said. “I’m considering helping Severus actually.” Remus raised an eyebrow.
“Really?” He asked, “Since when do you help Severus?”
“Since no one else will, and that way I can work against Sybil.” She explained.
“How do you know Sybil’s on their side?” Remus asked.
“He did poison her this morning.” Filius pointed out.
“True.” Remus agreed.
“Which side of this impending plotting between the staff are you going to be on?” Minerva asked Remus and Filius.
“Whichever side you’re on,” Said Filius, “You never lose.”
“I’m going to have to be on Snape’s side in case he stops making me the Wolfsbane potion.” Remus said, although the prospect of helping his old childhood enemy when people were plotting against him wasn’t particularly appealing. At least he got to plot against Trelawney though, that was a definite upside to all of this.
“Right, I’m off. Those sixth years won’t teach themselves.” Remus said.
“That’s not true. If you stay here Potter might teach them.” Minerva pointed out.
“True but then again he might not.” Filius said as he too rose from his seat and left for his afternoon classes.
“Don’t forget the meeting,” Minerva said to them as they left.
“Do you think we should turn up late and pretend that we forgot?” Remus asked Filius as they walked away from the table.
“I would but she might get us.” Filius smiled. “Although if she reminds me one more time I won’t be responsible for my actions…” Remus grinned, as a student at the school he had wondered how the teachers could possibly spend all their time teaching in such a dull school when there was a whole world out there. Now that he had returned as a teacher he found that he didn’t want to leave, not since everything was so terribly interesting and so bizarrely amusing. He wondered whether interest in the staff came with age or whether the staff were intentionally dull around the students, he couldn’t have imagined having something close to fun with his formidable Transfiguration and Charms teachers as well as his worst enemy when he was sixteen. Then again he couldn’t imagine that aged thirty six he would be looking after the son of the late Potters (and godson of Sirius Black). Things changed, and he was slowly getting used to that fact.
A/N: Short chapter, I know but the next chapter (More Than Just Magic Without A Wand) will be up on Saturday. Hurrah! I rather liked this chapter actually so I hope you did too. Trust me when I say that there is a plot and it is moving and not that slowly either. Time is going to skip forwards in a chapter or two because incase you haven't noticed it still the first week back at school and I'm on chapter twenty eight(?) I don't actually know the chapter but it's around that anyway. Just think, this is about half way through the story! God knows what I'll write when this is done. Well thanks for reading this far and I'm glad that you're not all thoroughly bored of this yet. Update coming Saturday :o)
Hello again.. this is a quick add in done on Saturday - the day I'm meant to be updating on. I can't update! I've lost all the chapters from Legilimens onwards!!!!! My disk won't let me open them and I have no copies from after Legilimens! I was on chapter 31! Woe is me! Basically I have to start again from there and hope I don't miss out much vital information. I am so annoyed right now!!!!!
Anyway, I'm going to update as soon as I can but that mightn't be for a couple of days. I can't help but wonder how many people are going to end up reading this since most people have probably already read this chapter who read it anyway. Apologies to you all for my successful loss of my work. New chapter coming in a day or two (as soon as I've rewritten it!!!!) Damn you microsoft... damn you!!! *shakes fist at the skies* :o)
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