Author's Note: Okay, yes, I am posting this WAY early. This is the final chapter, and I wanted to post it before I left town. I've set my Etsy shop to vacation mode, as I will be out of town to attend my grandmother's funeral. (She passed a few months ago and was cremated, and the family scheduled the funeral so that everyone could attend.)
Sorry about the cliffhanger last chapter. I know, I know. You all really really wanted the smut. So do I. So do they. But I had an opportunity to be a teeny bit nerdy and I had to do it...Also, I really liked the thought of giving this its own place so I could say my usual...
This chapter contains consensual sex between two people, and graphic descriptions of it. If you are offended by such matter I have no idea why you're here, but look for the next line break if you wish to skip the smutty bits. If you are underage, you probably shouldn't read it. However, I am not your parent. Also, fanfiction is way better than that 50 Shades crap. Usually.
"I don't want to go."
If his heart had cracked before her words, it was only so now it could burst with happiness and sheer relief. She wanted him—truly him, all of him, she loved him.
Severus was uncertain who had left their seat first, but they met in the middle of his sitting room, kissing and embracing as if the other was air.
"You daft man," Hermione chided between kisses. "Did you really think—"
"Shush," he muttered, tugging futilely at the clasp of her bra. He was too embarrassed to admit that he had, indeed, been too bloody insecure.
Hermione laughed breathlessly, pulling away to shove him backwards. "Bedroom, now. And clothes off."
Severus stumbled over his feet in his haste to simultaneously hurry and undress, but Hermione's laughter was not the mocking sort. She wriggled out of her bra, tossing it to the side. Severus found his lips curling into a smile as she struggled out of her knickers as well.
Her arse was magnificent.
Upon reaching his bed, Hermione turned with a smile. Her hair was wild, her eyes dark with passion and her nipples—lovely, perky little things—drew his gaze.
"Oh," he said, feeling quite stunned. His hands froze on the final buttons of his shirt. "You..."
"Thank you. Now strip," Hermione said, clearly pleased with his reaction to her beautiful, lithe form. "I want to finally see you."
She sat on the edge of his bed and he hastily shed his clothing. His shirt dropped to the ground, his trousers followed. Hermione's teeth sank into her lower lip. The man was intoxicating to watch. His movements were hurried, garters undone, socks discarded, and he was so...artless about the whole thing. Not trying to tease her or remain clothed and shy. There was something utterly adorable about his self-conscious hurry to be with her. Finally, Severus discarded his pants and stood unsurely before her, giving her a moment to admire all of him.
He was beautiful, in his own way. Oh, he would never be handsome to most, she wagered, but he was definitely handsome to her. Painfully thin, scarred, and pale with dark hair on his arms, legs, and chest... but perfect. She decided right then and there that she adored his body. Hermione was especially pleased with the trail form his belly to his semi-hard cock, and the little red bloom she had left on his collarbone. Perfect. Abso-bloody-lutely perfect.
Unable to bring herself to speak, she patted the bed next to her. Severus crossed to her. In the candlelight of his rooms, her skin was turned to a soft gold. She was all sweet, kissable curves and mad hair and Merlin but he loved her.
The passion that had flared in his sitting room had banked now to a slow burn as they met in a kiss and she tugged him onto the bed. It was a graceless thing, crawling over her. Too many limbs, the bed too small, and not enough of her body against his.
Severus kissed her slowly, firmly, his hands fluttering about her shoulders, her sides, her arms, unsure where to start. The unfamiliar freedom of choice was his, and anticipation made him shake. Hermione held no such reservations, grasping his hands and taking them directly to her breasts.
Hermione sighed happily as his long fingers closed around her breasts. His hands were strong and calloused and she arched into his touch. She kissed him as he touched her, pinching and rolling her nipples in his fingers in a way that left her writhing under him. While he was definitely exploratory in his ministrations, as soon as he found one that made her respond he kept at it.
She couldn't wait to go further.
How many nights had she dreamt of Severus over her? Inside her? How long had she lusted after him, only for it to blossom into true and deep love?
Too long. Far too long.
Severus left her mouth, dipping his head to her neck. His breath was coming in little gasps between kisses to her skin. His hands trembled when they left her supple flesh, so he left them there, exploring the sounds and movements he could elicit from her. She was stunning. No amount of research or fantasies could have prepared him for the scent of her, the texture of her skin and aureola, or the soft tang of sweat.
It was beautiful.
And as he had told her before, he did love to make her thoughts cease. To render her speechless or unable to form words lacking in multiple syllables. It was humbling and beautiful and he wanted to do more.
Hermione's hands wandered over his shoulderblades and down his strong arms. She could feel the flush spreading up her cheeks. This was so much better than fantasy. She loved the rasp of his body hair against her, the tickle of his long locks brushing over her skin, the planes of his lean form pressing her into the mattress...
"More," Hermione whispered, pushing his head towards her breasts. "Please, Severus..."
His mouth closed around her nipple and her eyes fell shut as he went from tentative to hungry. She was gone, swept up in passion and hunger. She felt claimed as he suckled and nipped and she moaned. Her nails raked his arms and he groaned.
The sound ripped through his chest at the kiss of pain and Severus suckled harder. Hermione arched and gasped and made delicious little noises. He learned quickly that she liked them sucked hard, the points to be flicked with his tongue. A lifetime of wanting, of longing to be wanted, turned his blood to molten sludge. He wanted to burn, yes, but to burn slowly, to savour each sound and sensation.
Her hands tugged at his hair, pushed at his shoulders, and he was grateful his mouth was occupied so he didn't ruin the moment by speaking. Merlin knew he would say something wrong...
Hermione twisted under his weight, wriggling until he was between her legs rather than entwined with them. She gave a happy sigh: this was so much better than her own fingers or any of her toys so far. Now if only she could get him to... "Lower," she urged. "Please..."
Severus levered himself up, bringing his mouth from her breasts to her lips. He slid his hand down her belly, trepidation curling through his stomach. What if he did it wrong?
"Show me," he urged between kisses. "I want to make you come. Show me what you do in bed alone, thinking of me."
She gave a breathless little laugh, spreading her legs wide. Severus shifted for a better look. His ill-fated view of her last time had been seared on his memory, yes, but she was truly lovely. The dark little curls, the dampness—for him, it was all for him—and the sweet pink center of her.
Her hand slid to his, guiding him, and she moved their combined fingers, showing him where and how she wanted to be touched. He was stunning to her, in that moment, with his lips parted and swollen from kisses, his cheeks pink. It was beautiful and intimate and as she slid their fingers between her labia, slicking them, then back up to rub, a thought struck her. Something she desperately wanted in that moment.
"Talk to me," Hermione said, rubbing his fingers over her clit in small circles.
Severus looked up at her, his eyes hooded and dark. "About?"
"Anything. Your voice is gorgeous."
He ducked his head, bashful. His speed increased and she arched, her hand leaving his to reach awkwardly down for his cock. Severus inhaled sharply as her hand closed around the hard, warm length. He looked at her again, he licked his lips, and then...it was as if a dam broke inside him.
"You are gorgeous," he said, bucking into her hand. "I saw everything in your room that day, you know. I was so overwhelmed that I passed out."
"Oh no," Hermione moaned. She released his cock to cover her face with her hands. "How mortifying."
"Only in that I couldn't bring myself to tell you," Severus replied. He rubbed her clit faster and she let out a whimper. "I wanted you then, Hermione, and I want you now."
"I want you, too," she whispered. She was flushed from cheeks to breasts and breathing heavily. Her legs quivered as he circled her clit faster. "I have to tell you again, and you had—oh!—better believe me...I love you, I love you, oh, fuck..."
Severus watched her, chest tight with anticipation. Was she actually going to come?
"In," Hermione begged with a whine. "In and rub, please..."
Breathing heavily, his cock aching, he slid a finger into her with a low moan. She was so...oh, Merlin. She was so wet, so tight, so perfect. He tried to rub her clit with his thumb while following her wriggling hips as she attempted to direct him.
"No, higher...Oh god, right there, don't stop...don't stop, oh please, oh—Severus!" She cried out and her body clamped down on his fingers, rippling and pulsing. He watched her, enthralled, slowing his movements to gentle motions.
Hermione flopped her arms bonelessly to his bed, panting for air. After several deep breaths, she looked up at him with a smile. "Sorry."
He arched a brow. Sorry? What the hell did she have to be sorry for?
"I'm okay," she whispered. Hermione drew her legs up around his hips and reached for his cock once more. It was a lovely cock, too, she thought. Thick and hard where it jutted from the nest of crisp black curls. "Still okay?"
Severus flushed. "Yes," he replied hoarsely.
Together, they guided him into place and he slid home with a guttural moan of pleasure.
"Oh Merlin," he gasped. Hermione felt amazing around him. She pulled him down to his elbows, her hips gyrating.
"Oh fuck," Severus muttered. It was incredible. He hadn't expected this—! His breath left him in a hiss as he began to move, finding a rhythm.
How many nights had he dreamt about her, like this? How long had he been in love with her, only to find her sexy and attractive as well?
Too long. Far too long.
She was so fucking beautiful. So fucking smart. Clever and determined and brave and his heart thudded painfully in his chest. He wanted so much more than just being together. He wanted to marry her, to spend every night with her, to argue with her, to fuck her, to make love to her, to make a family with her... He loved her, clear down to his bones. He loved her, he loved her, he loved her...
Hermione gasped under him. Her brain may shut down during sex, but Severus seemed to lose control of his tongue. She doubted he knew what he was saying, because it came out rushed and breathless and passionate and she felt like crying. He loved her. Truly loved her, wanted so very very much to make a life with her.
Just the same as she wanted but had been too shy to say for fear of scaring him off.
She clung to him as pleasure built for her, his emotions pouring forth in words even as her nails scored his back.
He arched above her with a final thrust, the cords in his neck standing out, gasping as his cock twitched inside of her. Hermione kissed his shoulder, his neck, holding him close as they fought for breath.
"I love you," she murmured.
Severus gave a happy sigh and nuzzled her check before brushing his lips over hers.
Hermione lay curled into his side, her hand on his belly, and Severus toyed absently with her fingers, enjoying the quiet intimacy. He sighed, feeling quite...happy. And dying for a cold soda.
"It's weird, you know," Hermione said absently. He tilted his head to an uncomfortable angle. She met his gaze. "The book, I mean. Those weird little old-fashioned s's." Her tone turned teasing. "You're not behind it, are you?"
Severus scowled. "You don't expect me to dignify that with a reply, do you?"
She laughed. "I know. It's just silly. It's just weird. Neither Filius or Lucius have been any help, and everything seems to be coming to a head."
"Not to mention that Draco was no help, either. And for a man keeping his father in expensive parchment you'd think he would keep some for his own use. I'm almost disappointed."
Hermione frowned, sitting up. Severus tried to tug her back down but she was clearly done with the post-coital moment. "Lucius is using expensive parchment? Wasn't he rendered mostly broke after the war?"
"He was broke," Severus corrected. "Completely. Hence why I was bribing him with a rather nice bottle of cognac."
"Can I see?"
Severus flicked a hand. Accio. All of the parchments he had dealing with the smut came zooming into his bedroom. He flicked his wrist again, Summoning the latest book she had brought. If they were going to ruin the moment with those atrocious novels, he may as well take a proper look at the bloody thing.
Hermione tugged the sheet up to cover her breasts almost absently as she looked over the various papers. Severus sat up, his scant half of the sheet pooling at his waist. He scratched at his arm and flipped through the first few pages of the book.
It was certainly better written than the others, and Hermione had been correct in saying that the quality led one to the belief that it was one of the first and originals. However, the more he read... well, the tale was more romantically-geared towards Potter, between the Boy Who Lived To Inspire Tripe and a nameless woman. And yet...Severus doubted that the novel had been written by a woman.
Hermione fingered the parchment from Lucius. "I think...Severus, I think his parchment's been duplicated."
"Oh?" One brow arched. "And you know that how?"
She gave him a wry grin. "You only have to be nearly buried alive under burning and duplicating items to get the feel for it. The spell has a very clear feel to me."
"And no quality is lost?"
"On the parchment? No. But it's possible he started with an entire pack. He would have to duplicate many, many pages before you see the wear and tear we're seeing on the novels, I think."
"Another mystery, then. Lucius is terrible at charms," Severus told her. "He has quite the head for business, and raw power for curses and hexes, but basic charms and transfiguration spells never stuck with him past exams."
She hmm'd, putting the letter aside to look over her equations from the tracking charm. Severus had made his own computations and she squinted at his cramped, spiky numbers. "Severus? Is this a four or a nine?"
"Thanks." It looked like he concurred with her results, and the papers had indeed come back to the school.
Severus finished flipping through the book and turned it over to look at the back. The address was incredibly clear. He brought the book closer to peer at the mark. Old-fashioned S's, they were a great deal like...but...
Certain pieces clicked into place and he got out of bed.
Uncaring of his nudity, he padded into the other room. Now where had he put it? He had borrowed it last month... Severus found the thin book he was looking for, under three issues of Potions Quarterly—it was entirely possible that he had, in fact, borrowed the reference last year—and tugged it free. Upon opening the front cover, he saw the same damn mark.
He swore loudly and stomped over to his desk, retrieving a can of soda from the back drawer. It opened with a hiss and he downed it.
"Severus?" Hermione appeared in the doorway, wrapped in his sheet. He glowered at her.
"I believe that there is more than one perpetrator," he ground out.
"I think I know one," she said grimly, holding up the book he had discarded. "This...sounds frighteningly like Colin Creevey talking to Harry. Nearly verbatim."
"It would appear that there are two more, then," Severus replied. "Those are not old-fashioned s's on the back. They are, in fact, dual F's. As in 'Filius Fucking Flitwick'."
Hermione scowled. "So let me guess, Malfoy's the third."
"Lucius, yes. I would wager that he provided contacts and the original financial backing. I would also assume that he is blackmailing the other two, or they would have given him up long ago and the income from two shares would not be coming to Hogwarts."
She looked at him, her arms crossed. "So...now what?"
He gave her an evil look. "Now, Hermione, we tell Minerva."
"Oh." Her lips twitched. "Oh, dear."
Minerva tapped her pursed lips with one finger. "These are highly disturbing accusations."
"We are fairly certain," Severus said. He again indicated the book's mark. The headmistress sighed.
"This puts us in a rather...uncomfortable position as a school."
"I am aware. I do not want to ruin Filius's life. However, I do want you to distract him for at least half an hour."
She sighed and looked at Hermione, who grinned. "Don't worry," she said. "We'll get this sorted, Minerva."
"Hi Colin," Hermione said.
The Auror jumped, falling out of his chair. "H-h-h-h-Hermione! Hi!"
"Got a minute?" she asked, taking the seat across from him.
"Er, yeah, actually. Did you, um, find something on the case?"
"Oh, I think so." Hermione pulled 'Harry Potter and the Philanthropic Photoshoot' out of her handbag and put it on his desk. "We think this is one of the originals."
Colin blushed furiously. "It, er, is the original. In my research, I mean," he added hastily. "I've um, been looking into it."
"So how is it, working with Harry?" It was too easy, Hermione thought as she changed topics. He was so scared.
"It's brilliant! He's a really good Auror," Colin gushed. "I'm really lucky to be assigned to him as his partner. Harry's amazing to work with. Really intuitive. I can't imagine not being his partner."
"Which is why you haven't come forward and have been burying my complaint," Hermione said.
Colin gaped. "Well, I, er...I mean, what?"
She gave him a hard look. "You know what. I don't really want to do this, Colin, but you do remember the DA parchment?"
Really, Hermione felt sorry for him as he began to spill everything.
Filius's wards were laughably easy, Severus thought, rifling through the desk in hidden room of Filius's personal chambers.
There were several letters, and as Severus had thought, Lucius had blackmailed the half-goblin and Creevey. Better, the charms professor was meticulously organised, keeping all of the stories to maintain the linked copying charm. Severus happily went about changing the originals with the spells Hermione had devised.
He felt just slightly bad about the readers, who would find their precious stories horribly, horribly changed.
After all, trolls weren't terribly attractive.
"How did it go?" Hermione asked, opening the door to his chambers.
"You could hear the cries of anguish from the Astronomy Tower," Severus replied, looking up from his publication. "The paintings have intimated that there is to be an impromptu bonfire this evening. And Creevey?"
"Taken care of, on pain of losing Harry as his partner... and maybe a threat or two."
"What did you do?"
"I may have pretended that I hexed him."
"And did you?"
"No, of course not."
"Pity," Severus said. "Would serve him right."
She swatted lightly at his arm. "No, serving him right is letting him live in complete terror over whatever mystery curse I cast activating.
"I thought so." She kissed the top of his head. "So that just leaves Lucius."
"Not going to be a problem."
"No, he used the same linking charm on his precious parchment. Someone may have Vanished the original pack, which Filius had kept in his office."
"Well, that stops him from writing anyone on inferior parchment," she said wryly. "What about the rest of it?"
"If you'll recall, Slytherins do not like being caught." Severus sounded terribly smug. "Expect a large deposit to your Gringotts account in the coming week."
"And it's all going to stop?"
"Doubtful—there are still the toys, though they will stop being based on us. And I imagine he will still publish books as long as the people contained therein do not bear the names of actual people. I also suggested an editor. He'll consider it." Severus paused. "I need another bottle of cognac to send him. Would you care to accompany me to London this weekend?"
Hermione grinned. "Why, Severus Snape, are you asking me on a date?"
To her delight, he blushed. "Possibly."
"Then I accept."
She leaned in and gave him a kiss before tugging him out of his chair and to the bedroom.
Minerva sighed heavily and looked at the blond in the fire. "Well, we knew it was not going to last forever."
"True," Lucius replied. His tone was tragic. "Never fear, Headmistress. They hadn't caught on about the other line. Your school will still have its income."
"Good," she said. "Then no one will have to know about you and the—"
The fire flared and Lucius ended the call before she could finish her sentence. Minerva chuckled and made a mark in the budgeting ledger. Hogwarts was better funded than it had ever been before.
And there we go, that's the end. Thank you for reading this silly little fic, and I do hope that you enjoyed the tale! You are all such wonderful readers and reviewers. Much love to you!