Prompt: #9 by huldrejenta for HP Silencio Fest 2015 on Livejournal.

Disclaimer: Harry Potter characters are the property of J.K. Rowling and Bloomsbury/Scholastic. No profit is being made, and no copyright infringement is intended.

Notes: Many thanks to my partner in crime, myfirstisfourth. ;)

The Stranger

He felt them watching him, wondering about him…waiting to see what he might do.

Ignoring them all, he took a long sip of his Malbec, appreciating the bitter, fruity tannins. It had been more than a month since Severus Snape's last day off, and he wasn't going to waste it. Here, no one knew he was a wizard or a professor or a spy; he was just another man enjoying some decent food, drink, and entertainment.

Licking his lips, savoring the taste as much as his anonymity, he glanced down at the assortment of plates and bowls filled with various tapas. The wizard selected a dark-green Arauco olive and popped it into his mouth. As he chewed the firm, brine-cured snack, the flavor of rosemary and almonds coated his palate, and Severus made a short, soft sound of pleasure.

From his worn dark-stained corner table, he could observe the entire establishment—if you could call it that. Thick smoke hovered overhead in the long, dim space and smelt of cloves. Several dark silhouettes, occupied by their own thoughts, sped past the gaudy, orange-neon-lit front window. Yellowing football posters and pin-sized holes covered the faded-blue walls. Standing at the far side of the room, a small group of Muggles placed bets on a heated, yet totally frivolous, game of darts.

The veteran spy watched as strangers chinwagged, sitting at scattered tables throughout the hazy room. However, right now, he was the stranger. Many of the regular patrons eyed him warily, others with simple curiosity.

Severus returned his attention to the two musicians on the mingy, elevated stage. One, with rolled up sleeves and a cigarette hanging from his lips, nimbly skipped his fingers across the keys of an upright piano. The boxy instrument bore numerous water stains and was in the process of acquiring another one as condensation from a tumbler, filled with licorice-flavored Fernet, dripped onto its surface. The other performer's arms stretched and squeezed a well-loved, black accordion decorated with mother-of-pearl inlay.

All there recognized that the men played for the joy of it, and the Potions Master discreetly tapped a foot to the strong, swaying beat of the music.

His fingers grasped the stem of his wine glass and lifted the inky, robust liquid for another swallow. As the rim touched his bottom lip, he heard the hollow click of heels and paused.

A lone woman walked across the dented and scratched wood planks of the pub, towards the center of the empty dance floor. Her smooth bronze arms remained unmoving against her sides until the tempo of the music changed…slowed. With one hand, she balled up a fistful of fabric and gradually pulled her red dress to the side, revealing a high slit and long, lithe legs.

She struck her a heel against the floor, creating a loud clack, before sharply bending her leg at the knee, holding it there for a fraction of a second. Effortlessly, the woman took a step back and spun around, raising her arms until they were at shoulder height, looking as if she were embracing a lover. Her long, dark hair settled in waves around her oval face, and she gasped in surprise, taking an involuntary step back. Pupils contracting, the woman's pulse quickened.

Severus loomed before her, his posture straight but relaxed, his penetrating gaze arresting her cortado-colored eyes. The tall wizard breathed steadily, waiting.

Crossing her arms over her breasts, the woman narrowed her eyes and considered Severus. He wore only black: a tailored-designer suit and a fully buttoned silk shirt, but no tie. His thick hair was slicked back into a short ponytail, and he exuded both power and danger.

She raised her eyebrows in challenge, and he smiled. His expression was cruel and yet... confident, radiating sensuality.

With that, the woman reached out, offering her hand; however, Severus didn't accept it. Instead…he firmly gripped her naked upper arm, squeezing for an instance, before slowly skimming his hand down until he held her fingers lightly. While he rubbed his thumb over her knuckles, he circled her, and she pivoted on one foot, allowing him to guide her around.

Staring into her darkening eyes, he was letting her know that until he indicated otherwise—she was his—completely.

Severus wrapped his arm around the woman, pressing his hand against her middle back, pulling her towards him as she placed her palm on his shoulder.

And as the pulse of the tango grew stronger, their dance began.

Movements in perfect balance, their bodies flowed with each minute change of the syncopation. When he leant back, she would lunge forward onto him, draping a calf over the curve of his rear. When he would cage her in his arms, she would skillfully kick her legs back between his.

The wizard twisted her and molded her around his body, and she submitted, but never entirely surrendered. He wouldn't have allowed her to dance with him if he thought she ever would. Her retaliations were subtle. She would teasingly strike the side of her shoe against his, a little too hard. She would claw her fingers into his back, and she would prey on his aroused state with the slight brush of a thigh or a hand. However, just her exotic perfume, smelling of sweet spices, or the lazy, lust-filled bat of her smoky eyes was enough to torture him.

As they danced, their bodies drew closer. The woman's brow and the bridge of her nose rested against his sharp cheekbone, and both could feel the other's breath on their lips.

She gyrated her pelvis against Severus' groin, this time with clear invitation. Years of working as a double agent were the only reason he was able to restrain his moan.

Their eyes locked and her mouth parted. The wizard leaned forward, softly kissing her forehead and inhaling one last deep lungful of her intoxicating scent before sliding his fingers from hers.

Giving her a noble, low bow, Severus turned and strode away from the beautiful woman, keeping his eyes focused on the exit, a small smile on his lips.

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