It was a dark night on Primrose lane. This particular street always had something or other happening, but now, at three in the morning, it was as dead as a graveyard. There was an owl flying around the terraced section of Primrose lane. Through the silence of the street, came a loud crack. The owl stopped flying and landed on a nearby chimney, to watch the new happenings.
A tall man appeared and started to walk briskly down the street, to where a large three storey building was a storey higher than the rest of the buildings. He watched the owl swoop from her place on the chimney and fly silently into an open window at the top of the three storey building.
The man knew what happened. He smiled and walked down the road. He began to get butterflies in his stomach, four years had gone by without as much as a howler to tell him how she was getting on in the muggle world, now he was to bring her back into the world she left behind the day she left school.
As he walked to the end of the road, the building came into full view in the dimly lit street light. The three storey building was in fact a B&B. The sign for it creaked in the breeze that caressed the street. He pushed open the gate that separated the street from the small, but well kept garden. He walked up to the door and knocked twice.
He wondered for a second if it was a good idea for him to knock. He took a step back and pulled his wand up to shoulder length, but before he could say a spell or incantation, the door flew open, and a woman in carpet slippers and hair curlers appeared. She took one look at the man and hissed, “Put it away, idiot boy, they think she’s crazy enough as it is!” Snape curled his lip and said, “Right, so she’s here then?”
Up stairs, the owl landed on a bundle wrapped up in bed sheets. Affinity woke up and said groggily, “What’s up, Angel?” The owl flew over to the window and hooted at Affinity. She stumbled out of bed, where a smaller bundle stirred too. As she looked out the window, her eyebrows raised. “Well hello there Severus!” The smaller bundle emerged, as Affinity said this. A small red terrier poked his head out and looked at Affinity, with big auburn eyes. “Sorry, Gus, it looks as though it’s time to go!” Affinity carried on watching him, as he took out his wand and then laughed as he was greeted by her landlady, Mrs. Anderson.
A few seconds later, there was a knock at her door. “Affinity dear, there’s a man here to see you.” Affinity took her wand off her bedside table and walked over to the door. She heard Mrs. Anderson walking back down the hall to her own room, and shut her door. Affinity pulled open her door and pointed her wand at Snape’s throat.
“Well, well, well, Severus, it sure has been a while!” Snape didn’t move. He looked at the sight the greeted him. Affinity was an average looking girl of 21. She had long dark brown hair that came to the small of her back, but she had the most beautiful lilac eyes. She was wearing an oversized t-shirt saying “Kiss me, I’m perfect!” “You know I don’t like it when you point that thing at me, Affinity.” Affinity rolled her eyes and walked back into the room.
“So, Severus, this is a bit late for a social call, isn’t it?” she pulled on a pair of jeans that was lying on the floor, and stood looking at him. “Affinity, you know I’m not here on a social call. I’m guessing you know why I’m here then?” He said, looking around at the room. Affinity took a bundle of letters from a drawer and threw them to Snape, who caught them and looked at the writing on the front one. “They’re from Karkaroff,” she said bluntly. He looked at her. “When did you get them?” he asked. “Every week for the past five months. I thought about sending them to Dumbledore, but I wasn’t sure.”
Snape put the letters inside his cloak, and picked up some spell books that were on the floor. “Get your trunk, we have to go.” Affinity pulled out her trunk from under her bed, and opened it. Over the next few minutes, they charmed her things into the trunk. Gus, the dog, walked over to the door and sat, waiting.
“Ok, that’s everything.” Said Affinity, as she threw her wand into the trunk and closed the lid. “I wish you’d carry it with you, Affinity.” Said Snape, disapprovingly. Affinity laughed and said, “Well, we all know what might happen if I did, Severus!”
Snape smirked and looked at Affinity. “Locomotor, Trunk” he said as he flicked his wand. The trunk sprang to life, wobbled a little, and hovered about a foot off the ground. They all walked down into the street, where Angel flew down and landed on the open gate. “So…” Affinity began. “Where are we going?” Snape looked at a pocket watch, and said “Hogwarts. Dumbledore has arranged for a position teaching advanced potions to the 6th and 7th years, to put off any suspicion, we are to leave immediately.” Affinity walked over to the owl and said “Go to Hogwarts, Angel.” The owl nipped fondly at her fingers, and flew off into the darkness. Affinity looked back at Snape, who was looking into the darkness. “What are we waiting for then?” She said as she joined him in looking up at the stars.
Snape sighed and said “Moody.” Affinity laughed and sat down on the trunk, and patted the space next to her. Gus jumped up and put his head on her lap. “Hi little man, you tired?” she said to the dog. Snape looked down on them as a father would, full of fondness.
Suddenly, there was a loud CRACK. Snape spun around, and pulled his wand out. A voice called out “Severus? It’s Arthur.” Snape put his wand away. “Where’s Moody, he should be here by now.” A tall man with red hair walked towards them. “Ah, yes, about that, Severus, There has been a change of plan, as it were.”
Arthur pulled Snape to one side, and had a quick, hushed conversation with him. They emerged about a minute after, with Snape looking rather sore. “Come on, quickly, we have to get out of here,” said Snape. Affinity stood up and started to walk in the middle of the pair. The trunk followed them, with Gus sat on the trunk. “So where exactly are we going then?”
They walked to the end of the road, and after no-one answered her question, Affinity stopped and said “I am not going another step further until you tell me what’s going on, Severus.” Snape turned around, and Affinity, thinking she was going to get an answer, started walking again. Snape just grabbed hold of Affinity’s arm and started to pull her down the road. “We have to move quickly, we’re going by floo powder.” Affinity stopped and pulled her arm free. “WHAT?” Snape smiled at Arthur. “Told you she wouldn’t like it.”
They got to the end of the road and turned down an ally. They stopped. They were now facing a blocked up door. Affinity started to mumble under her breath, and Snape looked at her. “I hope that wasn’t anything offensive.” “Well, you know me Severus!” Affinity joked.
Arthur stood back from the blocked up door, and brought his wand up to shoulder height and said, “REVEAL!” The wood blocking the door instantly vanished and a doorway appeared. They all filed into it and walked over to the fireplace.
Arthur took out a small bag of Floo powder and threw it to Snape, who caught it, and pulled the trunk into the fireplace. Arthur threw the powder down and said “Hogwarts; Dumbledore’s office.” The green flames swallowed him and the trunk up, and it went all quiet again. Affinity looked at Snape. He looked straight into her eyes, and said “You’d better be right behind me Affinity.” She nodded, and took the powder from him.
He climbed into the fire, and turned around to face Affinity. She said, “This is getting serious now, isn’t it Severus?” He nodded and said the same as Arthur, “Hogwarts; Dumbledore’s office.” Before the flames enveloped him, Snape’s eyes widened and he pointed at the door, and then disappeared.
Affinity ducked down just in time to avoid a curse “IMMOBULOUS!” Affinity grabbed Gus by the midriff and turned around. The shadow in the door resembled a toad, but in a humanoid way. She raised her wand again, but before she could say any incantation, Affinity put her hand up and said “No.” The wand flew out of her hand and shattered against the wall. Then, the woman rose up a few feet and flew out of the door and hit the wall opposite it.
Affinity climbed into the fireplace and threw the floo powder down and said “Hogwarts, Dumbledore’s office!” The green flames swallowed her up and she began to spin. But before she had a chance to balance herself out, she landed in a heap on the floor, and Gus next to her.
She pulled herself into a sitting position and looked around her. The first person she saw was Snape. He pulled her up and into a chair; he kneeled down and said to her, “Are you ok? What happened?” She looked at the floor. “It was an accident, I didn’t mean to..” Snape stood up and rolled his eyes, “Headmaster, this is a bad situation, if Umbridge is incapacitated, someone should go and make sure she’s ok, at least.”
The room fell silent. Arthur Wesley walked over to the fireplace and said, “Albus, maybe I should go, my self and Remus?” Affinity looked around the room, to see who this new person was. A young man, who would have been handsome were it not for the ragged hair and the patched clothes, walked over to the fire place and smiled at Affinity.
He held out his hand and said, “Affinity, it’s lovely to meet you at long last, I’m Remus Lupin I’ve heard so much about you.” After saying that, he immediately wished he didn’t. Snape threw him a filthy look. Affinity, however, shook his hand, smiled and said it’s lovely to meet you, Remus.”
They both left and Affinity was left alone in the room with Snape and Dumbledore. Albus walked to the other side of his enormous desk and sat down. “Affinity, it is good to see you. I must congratulate you on keeping yourself to yourself and not letting your true identity know to the both the Magical and Muggle Communities, as I knew you would four years ago, when you left the school. But, alas, the life you have built for yourself in the muggle world is no longer safe for you.” Snape threw the letters off Karkaroff onto the desk, in front of Dumbledore, who didn’t really pay any attention to them.
“And now, Affinity, I think it’s time for bed. As Severus already told you, you have a place here for you to teach Advanced Potions to the NEWT years. The school year starts in about two week’s time. I have arranged for your lodgings to be down in the Dungeons next to Severus’s room.”
Dumbledore bid Affinity and Snape goodnight, and Severus said he’d walk Affinity to her room. There was complete silence as Affinity, Snape and Gus walked down the hallway, and the trunk followed about two feet behind, floating along. Affinity looked sideways at Snape. “I’m happy to see you, Severus.” He didn’t reply.
They got to her room, and Snape opened the door for her. The room was fairly large, with a couch and a fireplace to one side, and a huge shag pile in the middle of the room. At the other side of the room, it had a sink and cupboards, like a small kitchen. Gus trotted in and sat on the shag pile. Snape walked into another room, and set the trunk down. Affinity followed him in. There was a huge bed in the middle of the room on the back wall. And through another door to the right, Affinity could see a bathtub.
“This is perfect, Severus!” Snape smiled and said “I thought you’d like it.” He flicked his wand and the bathtub filled with sweet smelling perfumes and bubbles the size of bludgers. “I’ll let you get washed and rest and I’ll talk to you tomorrow.” Affinity nodded and walked into the bathroom and closed the door behind her.
Back up in his office, Dumbledore was reading the letters Karkaroff sent to Affinity. They all said much the same thing, “I miss you a lot, and I hope we’ll be able to see each other soon,” and “Snape cannot be trusted.” Just after Snape entered the room, Dumbledore finished reading the letters. “Severus, these have become very dangerous times, Voldemort will eventually want his daughter by his side, and I don’t know what to do. Affinity will not be easily persuaded to join any side, but getting her here is half the battle.”
Snape nodded and said, “I agree, headmaster. I don’t know why, but I find it really hard to talk to her. I know that her background makes it so I won’t be able to have a proper relationship with her, but it’s really hard.” Snape stopped and thought back on what he just said. “Sorry, that was completely unnecessary.” Dumbledore smiled and said “it’s completely natural, Severus.”
Chapter | 2 |