Author's Note: Yeah, yet another Snape/Harry mentor/guardian AU fic. I just love writing these and I have so much fun with them! This I'm hoping to make different from the ones I have posted already, which is why I chose a different timeframe to start it and then I'll just see where it takes me (it will likely to take me through the summer and second year while it might possibly go onward). I hope that you like it and reviews, as always, are much appreciated.
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter, I never have, I never will and I'm only saying this once so I will not repeat it in later chapters
Fire and Ice
"What do you mean he never made it home?" Minerva McGonagall demanded furiously.
The man sitting behind the desk—Headmaster Albus Dumbledore—worried and warily eyed Minerva as if afraid she would start hexing him. She fixed her sternest glare on him as she folded her arms across her chest waiting for him to answer.
Severus Snape, sitting in the shadows of the office, knew who she was referring to and couldn't help but sneer. Of course Potter would do something to attract attention for himself, the arrogant brat who is so like his father, he thought but said nothing out loud. The last thing he wanted to do was invite the wrath of Minerva McGonagall down on him, especially since she looked about ready to spit fire at the moment.
"I mean what I said, Minerva," Albus Dumbledore said. "I decided to check the wards; they were supposed to update the instant Harry got home but they haven't yet."
Severus narrowed his eyes. It was late around ten at night; it was too late for an almost twelve year old to be out of the house, even one as spoiled and pampered as Potter.
"Are you sure they even picked him up, Albus?" Minerva demanded.
"Why wouldn't they? He's their golden boy," Severus sneered.
The Scottish Lioness glared at him. "Then how do you explain why he never made it home?" she demanded.
"That's why I called both of you here," Albus said. "I need one of you to go to King's Cross Station and see if Harry is still there and one of you should check on the Dursleys home to see if he is there and the wards just didn't update for some reason. If he's not in either place then we'll have to look for him."
"I'll check on the Dursleys," Minerva said; the anger was still there but Severus could hear undercurrents of worry. "I just hope he is there and the wards just didn't update." She turned and strode out of the office.
"That leaves you to check King's Cross Station, Severus," Albus said looking at the Potions Master.
"And if I do find him there, Albus?" Severus asked impassively.
"Ask him what happened and then take him back to the Dursleys," Albus said with a shrug. "Perhaps his relatives just forgot."
"Very well headmaster." Severus stood up and left the office inwardly cursing Potter. The brat just had to go and disappear; Severus was looking forward to finishing submitting his grades, returning to the home he inherited from his mother and getting some rest but now that would be delayed until Potter was found.
Once he left the castle, he made his way past the wards and, turning on the spot and apparated to King's Cross Station with a barely heard crack that distilled the air. He arrived next to the barrier between Platforms 9 and 10, which was the destination he had envisioned and looked around.
The station was deserted though still lit so Severus could still see. He walked away from the barrier and began scanning the area for Potter. It shouldn't be that hard to see Potter if he was still in the station because it was still lit despite the late hour. There was no one that he could see though.
Disillusioning himself, Severus wandered away from the barrier and toward the entrance to the station. He walked out of it and looked around for the brat but also making sure there was no one around just in case he had to reveal himself. There was no moon in the sky but starlight shone down on the sleeping city of London, though it did little to break through the darkness.
"I'm not really surprised this happened," a soft, familiar voice sounded; the words sounded so matter-of-fact that Severus, walking toward the voice, wondered what the brat meant and who he was talking to. There was no one around that Severus could see.
"I mean, my aunt and uncle have made it clear that they never wanted me from the beginning," Potter's voice murmured as Severus finally spotted him. He was lying on a bench next to a streetlight dressed in muggle clothing that looked two sizes too big and gently running his fingers along the chest of his snowy owl through the bars of the owl's cage.
Severus frowned at Potter's words; they sounded defeated and sad as if he truly believed his own words.
"Are you sure you delivered that letter, Hedwig? 'Cause no one's arrived or anything," Potter said. Hedwig chirped but it was clear her chirp was irritated.
"Okay, okay, I'm just making sure," Potter said.
Severus frowned at that. Letter? Did Potter actually use common sense and send a letter? If so then why didn't anyone receive it? He wondered silently. He was about to reveal himself—startling the brat would be an added bonus—but paused when Potter began speaking again.
"I hope Snape didn't get the letter. He'd probably burn it," the brat said with a sigh. "I don't even know why he hates me so much and to think I was actually interested in his class. It's kinda like chemistry in primary school, well harder than that but still. And he even accused me of not paying attention that very first day when I was just writing down what he was saying."
Severus narrowed his eyes at that; he had noticed Potter was writing while he was giving his traditional first day of class speech. Had he really been doing that? He thought. He knew that Potter wasn't likely lying; he was talking to his owl and didn't know anyone was nearby after all.
Although, him talking to his owl made Severus wondered if he should have stayed in Poppy's care after the incident with Quirrel.
Thinking back to Potter's first words about him, Severus thought, does the brat actually believe that? He also thought about how Potter sounded so resigned when he accused Snape of hating him, which wasn't true. Severus didn't like Potter—he reminded him too much of his father but also brought back painful memories of his mother, especially because of his eyes—but he didn't hate the brat. He did save Potter's life during his first Quidditch game after all.
"I hope someone gets here soon," Potter said. "If people walk by, they're going to think I'm weird for talking to an owl." He turned his gaze from Hedwig to the starry sky above.
Well, at least he knows that what he's doing is odd, Severus thought deciding now would be a good time to reveal that he was there. He was curious about that letter though and wondered why it didn't reach anyone at Hogwarts. And if it did then who got it? And why didn't they give it to Albus or any of the other teachers?
Canceling the disillusionment charm, Severus walked the remaining feet to the bench. "Mr. Potter," he said and smirked inwardly when Potter jumped and fell off the bench. He landed unceremoniously on the ground.
"Ow," the boy muttered pushing himself to his feet before looking at Snape. "Snape?"
"Professor Snape, Mr. Potter," Severus snapped folding his arms across his chest and giving the boy his best piercing glare. "What are you doing here?"
Potter frowned. "You didn't get my letter, sir? I explained everything in that letter," he said.
"No one received any letter, Mr. Potter," Severus said; he was being honest. "Professor Dumbledore received word that you never made it home though. Why was that?"
Potter shrugged. "Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon never arrived, sir," he said.
"And why would they not arrive to pick up their golden boy?" Severus sneered.
Potter's green eyes flashed but he remained silent and shrugged again.
"Shrugging is not an answer, Potter," Severus snapped.
"Why do you care?" Potter retorted.
"I'm one of your teachers, Potter. It's a teacher's duty to make sure their students are safe," Severus said. That was true though the real reason why Severus was there making sure the brat was safe was because of the promise he made to Lily.
"Now answer the question," he demanded.
Potter glared at him before looking away. "Maybe they just forgot," he said but Severus, having trained as a spy for years, could catch the lie easily.
"You're lying," he said. "Now come, I'm taking you home now."
Potter said nothing; he simply nodded and grabbed his trunk and Hedwig's cage. Severus, wondering why Potter didn't get upset at being accused of lying—though he was—took the boy's arm and apparated to Privet Drive.
. . .
Minerva McGonagall apparated to Privet Drive almost as soon as she was past the wards of Hogwarts before making her way down the street toward the Dursley's home. When she reached the house, though, she was surprised to find that there didn't seem to be anyone home. There wasn't a car in the driveway and all the lights inside the house were off.
Maybe they're asleep, she thought walking over to the door. She needed to confirm that Harry was there before she returned to Hogwarts. Knocking on the door, she waited but no sound seemed to come from inside the home. She frowned before knocking again but, again, there was no answer.
Sighing, Minerva stepped back wondering what to do now. She didn't want to just let herself in—that was rude—but she needed to know that the boy was all right. She decided that she would stay there until she came up with an idea of what to do next. Hopefully, Harry was all right.
She didn't have to wait long.
About ten minutes later, Minerva, in her cat form, was sitting on the fence that separated the Dursley's home from their neighbors washing her ears when Severus arrived with Harry in tow. Relieved to see that Harry was all right and curious to know what happened, Minerva bounded off the fence and blurred into her human form.
"Severus," she greeted the Potions Master who didn't bat an eyelash at her sudden appearance.
"Minerva, I found your wayward cub," Severus said.
"Hey Professor McGonagall," Harry said at the same time.
Minerva smiled at him. "Hello Mr. Potter. Where did you find him, Severus?" She asked looking back at the Potions Master.
"King's Cross Station," Severus said. "Apparently, his dear relatives didn't pick him up."
"I don't even think they're home," Minerva said looking back to the house. "I didn't want to just let myself in because that's rude but no one answered when I knocked."
"Uncle Vernon's car isn't here," Harry said frowning. Dragging his trunk behind him, he walked over to the door. He turned the knob and, to Minerva's surprise, it opened.
"That's weird. Uncle Vernon always locks the door before he goes to bed," Harry said before he pushed the door all the way open and glanced at the two professors. "You can come in if you want."
Personally, Minerva wanted to know why the door was unlocked so she walked after Harry into the house shielding her eyes from the glare of the lights when Harry turned them on. What she saw shocked her to the core.
The house was completely empty; there were no pieces of furniture, no pictures on the wall, nothing except papers and trash lying scattered on the dust-covered floor. It looked as though no one had been living in the house for months.
Even Harry looked shocked.
"Mr. Potter, why don't you go to your room and get some rest?" Minerva suggested hoping her voice sounded gentle though she was starting to feel anger, once again, course through her.
"Um, okay," Harry said sounding dazed but he began making his way up the stairs taking Hedwig's cage and his trunk with him. Only when he was out of sight and out of earshot did Minerva turn on Severus, eyes blazing with fury.
"They haven't been living in this house for months!" She hissed casting a silencing charm over them before she began speaking. "No wonder they didn't pick Harry up at King's Cross Station. They weren't here to pick him up! I knew they were the worst sort of muggle out there, I knew it!"
Severus's wand was in his hand and he murmured a spell; a pale-blue light shot from his wand before Severus shook his head. "There are no traces of any kind of magic, Minerva. I can't even detect any wards around this place. Albus did say that the wards would fall if Petunia left this house and it looks like that is what they did."
Minerva's lips thinned. "You better not blame Harry for this, Severus," she said coolly.
"I was not," Severus growled. "I am simply saying that Potter knows his aunt and uncle better than anyone."
Severus snorted. "I only knew Petunia and not nearly as well as I knew Lily. Petunia always hated me," he said.
"Still, could she have done this?"
"I wouldn't think she would stoop low enough to leave her nephew without protection even though she knew that he was in danger without the blood wards. Albus said he told her that in the letter he left for her," Severus said.
"And yet all the evidence suggests that that's exactly what she did," Minerva said; her anger was still there but now she sounded worried. "What should we do? He's no longer safe here now that the wards have fallen."
"We may as well take him back to Hogwarts, Minerva," Severus said.
Minerva sighed but nodded and canceled the silencing charm. "I'll go get Harry," she said and made her way upstairs.
. . .
Harry Potter was surprised that his aunt, uncle and cousin had actually abandoned him; left him at King's Cross Station, packed up everything in the house and left. They took everything, even what was in Dudley's second bedroom that had been given to Harry after the first several letters hare arrived back in July. Harry was literally left with only the clothes on his back and in his trunk.
He sighed, putting Hedwig's cage down before stretching his fingers through the bars and gently stroking Hedwig's chest. The snowy owl chirped and Harry smiled at the owl before retracting his fingers and standing up. He walked over to the window and opened it letting in some of the warm, summer air into his room hoping it'll clear out the stuffiness.
He then wandered back to his trunk. Professor McGonagall had told him to rest but, since he didn't have a bed to rest on, Harry decided that he might as well distract him and the only thing he had to do was his summer homework. Granted, he didn't want to do homework on the first day of summer vacation but there really was nothing else he could do.
Harry decided to start on the summer assignment for Potions, he really did think Potions was interesting even if he didn't really like the teacher or understood why Snape hated him so much. As he dug out a parchment roll, a quill and inkpot and his Potions textbook, Harry noticed he couldn't hear anything from downstairs.
Did they leave? He wondered silently as he turned to the page in the textbook and began working on his assignment.
He only got a little ways through it when a knock sounded on his door. "Come in," he said looking up as Professor McGonagall made her way into the room stopping and looking around.
"Where is everything, Mr. Potter?" she asked.
"I dunno, Professor," Harry said shrugging putting down the quill.
McGonagall was looking around and Harry could see fury in her eyes. He knew that the anger wasn't directed at him but he couldn't help but shift away from her. "Those…despicable…good for nothing…muggles," she snarled furiously.
Harry was gazing wide-eyed at the Transfigurations Professor, shocked because he's never seen Professor McGonagall so angry before.
McGonagall took a deep breath to calm herself before looking at Harry. "Come, Mr. Potter. We're leaving," she said.
"Professor Dumbledore said I had to stay here though," Harry said a bit bitterly. He had tried to tell Dumbledore that he wasn't happy with the Dursleys but all Dumbledore did was tell him that he had to stay with his aunt and uncle and offered him a sherbet lemon.
"You aren't safe here, Mr. Potter, despite what Professor Dumbledore says," McGonagall said. "Now come."
Harry stood up and returned his inkpot, quill, textbook and assignment to his trunk. McGonagall then shrunk his trunk so that he could carry it easier. "Thanks Professor," Harry said putting the shrunken trunk into the pocket of his pants. He then grabbed Hedwig's cage and followed McGonagall down the stairs.
Snape raised an eyebrow at McGonagall when she joined them. "What happened this time, Minerva?" he asked.
"Despicable muggles," McGonagall growled. "They even took everything that was in Mr. Potter's room, everything. There wasn't even a bed in the room."
Snape's lips thinned but he said nothing though Harry saw a brief flicker of quiet anger in the Potion Masters' normally impassive obsidian eyes as he turned and strode from the house. "Come on, the sooner Albus knows about this, the better," he said without glancing back.
"Yes, Albus and I are definitely going to have a long talk about this," McGonagall said furiously leading the way out of the house.
Harry trailed after them not once glancing back at the house that had been where he lived for the past almost eleven years. Where am I going to go now? He thought.
McGonagall took his arm gently. "We're going to sidelong apparate," she said.
Ron had told him about apparition so all he did was nod. McGonagall then turned on the spot and the two of them disappeared with a crack.
They reappeared on a path with Hogwarts rising up in front of them; Snape appeared at their side and strode toward the gates without a backwards glance. McGonagall shook her head and after making sure Harry was all right—he was though he was a little nauseous—she followed the Potions Professor.
Harry walked after the two professors in silence still thinking about where he would go now that his relatives abandoned him.
A/n what do you think?
Blaze: and that was the 6 page first chapter of Fire and Ice
Darth: awesome so how're things gonna change?
Blaze: well, for one, there is absolutely NO Harry/Ginny in this story
Darth: cool, who's Harry being paired with then?
Blaze: I don't know. It depends on how far I decide to take this story
Darth: oh okay
Severus: (pushes Voldymuffin into coffin that falls into magma)
Voldymuffin's Ghost: what the heck, Severus? YOU WORK FOR ME!
Severus: I do?
Voldymuffin's Ghost: YES YOU DO. WHY MUST I KEEP REMINDING YOU OF THAT?
Severus: you don't have to scream, moron!
Voldymuffin's Ghost: you did not just call me a moron!
Severus: yes I did, moron!
Voldymuffin's Ghost: (shrieks in anger and goes to attack Severus)
Blaze: (sucks Voldymuffin's Ghost into Fenton Thermos)
Dan: (in same Fenton Thermos) ah come on!
Blaze: sorry, I just grabbed a random thermos
Dan: (grumbles and glares at Voldymuffin's Ghost inside thermos)
Blaze: (shakes thermos)
Voldymuffin's Ghost and Dan: DON'T DO THAT!
Blaze: (chuckles) so I hope that you enjoyed the first chapter and reviews, as always, are much appreciated