Fandom: Harry Potter
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Author's Notes: This is a sequel to "Nocturne in Green and Gold".
1: a slow graceful dance in 3/4 time characterized by forward balancing, bowing, and toe pointing.
She was alone.
She entered the hall, drawing no attention to herself. This was her day to shine, but she relinquished the spotlight gracefully. She seated herself at a corner table and observed the rejoicing crowd.
After so many years of living in fear, he had been defeated. He snorted to himself. What the most powerful wizards in the world could not do, a triad of teenagers completed in a night.
She looked like no teenager, however. Her hair was swept up in a Grecian knot on the top of her head. Curls were artfully arranged around her expressive face. Bright brown eyes watched her friends dance and shout gleefully over the rowdy throng. She seemed content to remain on the sidelines--as he was.
Before he could reconsider, he stood and made his way over to her table. He took the chance to study her more closely. She was dressed in an elegant gown of dark blue silk--the same shade as the night sky reflected in the ceiling. She wore no jewelry other than a pair of diamond studs in her ears. She would never be considered other than passingly pretty, but she fascinated him in ways no blonde beauty ever had.
He stopped by a chair. "Miss Granger," he greeted her smoothly.
She smiled at him, something no one had done in years. "Professor Snape! Please, have a seat," she said, gesturing to the chair beside her. He did so silently. "It's so loud in here. How do you deal with this every day?" She paused, then laughed. "Oh, that's right--with an iron fist."
He raised an eyebrow. "Daring, Miss Granger."
She smiled cheekily. "Why not? I've already graduated--you can't even take House points from me." She sighed, suddenly melancholy. "I can't believe I'm leaving this place. Seven years is a long time."
"So it is." He did not approve of small talk, but she did not appear to stop anytime soon.
"I'm not sure what I'm going to do after Hogwarts. Harry wants to join the Aurory. Ron wants to play professional Quidditch." She paused. "But you don't care about that, do you?"
"Not particularly," he replied. He did not expect laughter to be her response.
"Truthful as always! If I ever need my ego punctured, I'll be sure to send you an owl."
"And what makes you so certain I'll respond?" he replied archly.
"Well, someone must have drilled proper etiquette into you. It can't be all potions ingredients and bitterness toward students in there." His face remained expressionless, but hers paled in shock. "I am sorry, Professor. That was completely uncalled for."
"Believe me, Miss Granger; I've heard worse," he said sardonically.
"That is no excuse," she said, obviously berating herself.
"Apology accepted." She smiled, relieved.
"So do you have any plans for the summer, sir?" she asked. He stared at her for a moment, uncertain of her intention in asking the question.
"None as of yet. Due to you and your friends, I find myself with a sudden excess of free time."
"Ah. You should go on holiday; get out of Hogwarts. You're a free man now, Professor." He blinked. He had not thought of it that way.
One of her friends came up to the table. "Come on, 'Mione! Join the party!"
"You know my name, Ronald--use it," she snapped irritably.
The redhead rolled his eyes. "Aw, you know I'm only joking, Hermione. It's a pet name, is all."
"Yes, well, I'm not your pet." He shook his head. She did the same, sighing as he walked away. Classical music replaced the popular music playing--the headmaster's choice, no doubt.
Her next question shocked him to the core.
"Would you like to dance?"