Title: Severus Snape's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Afternoon.
Fandom: Harry Potter (Snarry)
Characters: Harry Potter, Severus Snape.
Word count: 980
Disclaimer: Don't own these characters. No money is being made out of this work.
A/N1: Unbetaed. Written for the adventdrabbles (DW,LJ, IJ) 2015 prompt 10: Snow covered garden/ Prompt 11: Oranges and Cinnamon.
A/N2: This is the fifth part of my Black Smoke series.
Summary: Severus hadn't been amused. He was used to quiet and solitude. To the controlled environment of his classroom and quarters. To children who were too busy studying to waste time playing and, therefore, were quieter. Calmer. Better.
Severus Snape's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Afternoon.
It turned out that Potter was ridiculous enough to spend half the afternoon chasing his giggling godson around the dining table while claiming to be the 'Hug Monster.' Severus hadn't been amused. He was used to quiet and solitude. To the controlled environment of his classroom and quarters. To children who were too busy studying to waste time playing and, therefore, were quieter. Calmer. Better.
Young master Lupin had an alarming amount of energy, which he spent by fluttering from 'game' to 'game' like a dizzy butterfly. Potter laughed at his antics, kept up with his constant babbling and cast a staggering amount of Cushioning Charms over him as he ran around the furniture, perched precariously on his chair while snacking on orange and cinnamon cookies, and cavorted like a demented squirrel in Potter's snow covered garden.
Severus had been exhausted within the first half hour and was at his wit's end by the time Potter called 'bath time' and steered the little menace towards the bathroom. Blessed silence finally fell around him, soothing his frayed nerves, and he burrowed sleepily under his blanket's soft folds, perched his jaw on his front paws and thanked Merlin for the fact that he'd never had children.
The sudden ping of the Floo, announcing an incoming call, interrupted his peacefulness and he turned weary eyes towards the green-tinged flames, wondering if this was how Potter liked to live, his days so packed with activity that he didn't have time to think.
“Harry, are you there?” Andromeda Tonks' voice reached him and Severus was dismayed to discover that he seemed to have lost his near-perfect control over his own reactions along with his human form. Her voice had always reminded him of Bella's, but he'd never once before hissed threateningly at her because of it. He was a rational man, after all. He knew that Bellatrix was dead and that the similarities between the sisters were only skin-deep, but none of that stopped him from scrambling out of his blanket to stand, growling, on the sofa.
Andromeda's eyes lit with delight upon seeing him and she cooed sweetly at him in Bella's horrid sing-song voice:
“You're the kitten the professor turned into? Merlin, you are adorable. And a perfect copy of Mathew's kitten, too. Teddy has been begging us for a cat since he first saw it, so it's no wonder his magic changed you into one. I'm sorry about this, though. Horrible thing to be caught in, wild magic. Teddy told me what happened when I collected him from George's store earlier. Good move on Harry's part, that. Leaving Teddy with George, so he could take you to Hogwarts. I take it Poppy Pomfrey couldn't change you back?”
Severus tried to stop himself from hissing at her, but his precious control was nowhere to be found. She leaned forwards and he reared back, yowling so loudly that he startled himself and tumbled against the puffy sofa cushions.
“Oh, dear...” Andromeda muttered, consternation clear in her tone as she opened the floo connection and stepped inside Potter's house.
Severus' territorial instincts kicked in before he could blink and, no matter how hard he tried to squash them, all he cared about was that she didn't belong here because she didn't sound right and didn't smell right. Worse still, her floral scent overwhelmed his nostrils, masking Potter's familiar -'familiar?'- scent so completely that he reeled at the intolerable sense of loss he experienced when he failed to smell the Gryffindor in his immediate vicinity.
“Let me assist you, professor.” Andromeda said, helpful hand inching towards him, but Severus rolled away, tangling himself in the folds of his own blanket. He mewled with outrage, hissing at her when she tried to come closer, and displayed his teeth in warning.
Potter's steps thundered down the corridor and he arrived in the room looking absolutely frantic, recently bathed child in tow.
“What on earth is going o...?—Oh!”
“Gwanny! You found our kitty. Idn't he beaufulul?”
“I think I frightened him. I don't know why. I haven't changed that much since the war, have I?”
“He's—gone, Andy. Poppy said the professor isn't there at all. There's only the cat.”
“You mean the kitten is real?”
“No. No. No! The kitty id not a kitty, gwanny. Hawy pwomised. He's a hewo, ya know? Thaths why I can'd 'ave 'im. I'm gonna gebh a REAL kitty foth my berdday!”
“Only if you're good.” Potter reminded the child even as he approached the sofa. Severus' panicked efforts to free himself from his blanket halted as soon as he caught his first whiff of Potter's scent. A bewildering feeling of complete and utter comfort washed over him and he whimpered in reaction, thoroughly distressed by it.
“It's alright, lil' mate. I'm here. And I'm going to get you out of that tangled blanket before you twist a paw or something, OK?”
Potter pulled the soft fabric aside and curled gentle hands around his flank, lifting him clear off the sofa altogether. Severus' little heart started pounding with overwhelmed gratitude and he'd headbutted Potter's calloused thumb before he thought better of it.
Potter laughed, drawing him even closer and cuddling him reassuringly. Severus basked in his familiar scent and marked the flannel shirt he wore with his own smell while his mind reeled with shock at the implications of his own instinctive behavior. He couldn't believe how badly he'd reacted to Andromeda or how useless he'd been at defending himself and his—human from perceived invasion. He couldn't accept that he'd needed saving -from Andromeda Tonks and a fluffy Santa-themed blanket, no less- and he couldn't accept that Potter had saved him. Rushed to his aid, even. He couldn't reconcile himself with the fact that he—he'd liked it. Oh, Merlin! He'd liked being 'saved' by Harry-Bloody-Potter. This was the end of the world as he knew it.