A/N: Thanks to an awesome reader, Carol's Sister, for the idea to send Molly, well, somewhere *else*. I hope you enjoy the end to this story. As always, thanks for reading. -slbb
After one last furtive glance at Severus, Hermione Apparated home, collapsing onto the soft grass the moment that she stopped spinning. Uncertain how she hadn't splinched herself into all the parts that felt ripped apart, Hermione lifted her head to search for Severus.
He arrived a breath later and vaulted to her, his arms granting her permission to cry.
Severus picked her up and carried her inside, entrusting her to the deep brown leather couch and covering her with a throw. Wordlessly, he retreated to the kitchen, returning with a hot cup of tea. It tasted as if he had laced it liberally with Calming Draught. She didn't care. She sobbed into the wool, tears falling down her nose and darkening the emerald and silver of the blanket into splotches of near-black and deep grey.
They sat in silence for a long while. He seemed to be waiting for her to speak.
"I…I…what did I do?" Hermione sniffled when she had composed herself enough to find her voice.
"The right thing." He pulled her closer, holding her so tightly, she thought her brokenness just might mend. "It was inevitable."
Hermione couldn't have guessed how long she remained snuggled against Severus's chest on the couch. At some point, he had threaded his fingers in hers. She was grateful for his comforting touch: Molly's screams haunted Hermione each time she allowed her mind to wander.
"Severus…I…" She hesitated. What words could possibly express how heavy and light her heart felt at this very moment, after all that had happened? It was heavy with burden, yet light with relief. "Thank you for taking care of me."
"Of course." She felt his chest rumble beneath her as he spoke.
There was a flutter of noise as a Ministry owl swooped in the open sitting room window, landing on the side table near Hermione. She pulled away from her Potions Master and relieved the bird of its message.
She swallowed hard.
"Harry has asked us to meet him at Grimmauld Place as soon as we can. He wants to show us what the Aurors found in Ron's room." She looked up to meet Severus's dark eyes. "What do you think?"
"I think we should trust Potter's judgment on this."
"Okay." She stood up and found she was steadier on her feet than she would have guessed. "Floo or Apparate?"
"Side-Along Apparate," Severus said authoritatively. He took her hand. "Let's go."
As they arrived on the front step of 12 Grimmauld Place, Hermione was hit with a wave of bittersweet nostalgia. This home had been her refuge after the war, after all: it had been a place of comfort until Ron had ruined it for her. For all of them.
Harry was waiting for them just inside the threshold. He was dressed in his Auror's robes.
"Hey," he said pulling the door wide for them to enter.
"Hey." She smiled sadly at Harry and reached for his hand to squeeze it for a second. She'd been so caught up in her own pain, she had nearly forgotten Ron had been Harry's best friend, too.
Harry hesitated. "Are you sure you want to see this?" He glanced at Severus. "I can take Professor Snape upstairs while you wait—"
Hermione cut across him. "I need to. I think it will help me, actually."
Severus took her hand, lacing his fingers in hers and gripping it hard. As they followed Harry up the wooden stairs, Hermione could hardly breathe. This wooden grey stairwell had nearly taken her life. It was right there where she had broken her ankle, there where she had wrenched her arm, there where she had hit her head. She suppressed a shudder and fought a wave of nausea.
Severus squeezed her hand tighter.
Aurors Urquart and Tudorov turned to regard Hermione as she walked into Ron's bedroom. The dingy blind had been pulled up and the window had been pried partially open, casting a sallow light in the grey room. The desk drawers had been upended onto the bed, the contents sorted into piles of everyday things like broken quills, empty inkpots, and blank pieces of parchment. On the desk stood a neat stack of papers and photographs. It looked ominous.
Harry cleared his throat, dragging Hermione's attention from the stack on desk back to him. "I asked Head Auror Macmillan if I could contact you before we took the evidence back to the office," he said, indicating the pile. "He agreed."
Hermione moved slowly towards the desk. She fingered a photograph on the top of the pile gingerly.
The photograph had been taken in the Gryffindor common room during her Sixth Year. In the picture, her image glanced up from an essay with a quill in hand, and smiled. She remembered Ron taking it, having borrowed Colin Creevey's new wizarding camera.
She'd seen it many times—Ron had always said it was one of his favorites.
Seeing its condition now sent chills through her. The photograph was wrinkled—it seemed to have been balled up and smoothed out again. What appeared to be burns marred the part of the picture where her eyes would have been. DEAD WHORE had been scrawled across the rest of her face in fat, red marker. She shivered.
"Professor, here's a note that I think you should read." Harry handed Severus a folded parchment. "It's typical of the ones we found."
Hermione watched her bondmate purposely still his face as he opened it.
"What…?" she asked him.
Severus glanced up but didn't answer her. His dark eyes blazed alarmingly.
"I believe this is all the evidence one would ever need," he said, addressing Harry.
Hermione picked up a different letter near the top of the pile and read it.
They think they can keep me away from her? Who the fuck do they think they are? They're wrong. She's mine and I can do whatever the fuck I want. If that greasy git thinks he can have her, he's wrong. No one can. Ever. And I'm going to see to it. It's going to be a pleasure to slit their throats.
Hermione stood dumbfounded, rereading Ron's nearly unintelligible handwriting. She stared hard at the ink, desperately trying to make sense of the scrawl. The man she thought she might marry—the boy she had considered to be her best friend for nearly seven years—wanted to slit her throat? What?
A flurry of five owls soared in the grimy window. She jumped. They drifted to their respective recipients to present identical creamy envelopes, each sealed with a garnet wax stamp. She took the missive from the bird that had landed nearest to her but found she didn't have the will to open it.
Harry ripped his open and read aloud. "Your presence is requested at an informal meeting at the Ministry of Magic to discuss the current situation involving Ronald Weasley. Please arrive at 5 p.m. this evening and ask to be directed to meeting room 329A. Your cooperation in this matter is greatly appreciated. Sabastian Fawley, Undersecretary to the Minister for Magic."
"We've been summoned by Fawley," Harry said unnecessarily, glancing at them.
"Should we go?" Hermione asked, turning to her husband.
"I don't believe we have choice, however it has been worded," Severus responded levelly as he gently pried Ron's written promise of violence out of her now-shaking hand.
"I suppose we'll see you there, then," Harry said, shrugging and gathering the pile of photographs and letters into a leather briefcase. "I wouldn't miss it for the world."
"Thank you, Mr. Potter," Severus said, handing both of Ron's parchments back to Harry. "I believe we have seen enough."
And Severus led her to the hall and Apparated them away.
"Are you okay?" Severus asked as soon as they had landed back at the cottage.
Hermione sighed. "I am. I thought I did the right thing this afternoon. Now I'm sure I did."
"I'm sorry it came to that," he said, keeping his arms around her.
"Me, too." Hermione pulled away. "I think…I think I'd like to shower before the meeting."
"Good idea," he said, kissing the top of her head tenderly. "Let me know if you need anything."
Hermione emerged from the shower a good half an hour later after, feeling infinitely better. She padded into the sitting room in bare feet, clothed in clean denims and a t-shirt, and rubbing her hair with a towel. Her husband smile-smirked at her approvingly.
"What was that noise I heard a little while ago?" she asked Severus.
"A Howler from Molly Weasley."
She rolled her eyes. "Fabulous."
A strange noise pulled her attention to the kitchen. Apparently, Errol was trying to navigate an imagined opening in the window near the sink. Hermione would have laughed except for the red envelope in his beak. It was another Howler. She cringed.
"I'm guessing that one is for you, angel," he said, a note of sadness in his voice. "Let me apologize on her behalf for what she's about to say."
Hermione frowned. Just when she had started to feel better, a Weasley had to ruin it.
"Well, it's been quite a day hasn't it?" Severus commented as the Howler finally silenced and exploded into ash.
Molly had screeched at her through the Howler for a good ten minutes. Now, whenever the witch's voice sounded in her head, Hermione no longer heard Molly's lament for her son in Diagon Alley. Instead, she heard the insults and threats Molly had sent via owl. Apparently, insults and threats are just the trick to get one to forget a mother's wails.
Ironically, the Howler had been just what Hermione needed.
"It has been quite a day." She fingered the summons from the Ministry of Magic. "And it's not over yet."
"Look at me, Hermione," her bondmate said. "Everything will be okay. I promise."
She smiled at him softly, this brave and loyal man…this man who had claimed her as his…this man, who only had half the time to fall in love with her than she had to fall in love with him. Merlin, how she adored him. Her emotions were a mess—rage, guilt, disgust, and terror were fighting for control. Yet this wonderful man continued to comfort her through all of it. It was past time to turn her focus back to him.
Hermione went to the kitchen to find exactly where she had left her robes, pulled the box from Diagon Alley Jewelry out of a pocket, and stumbled back into the sitting room.
"I…I'm not sure how to give this to you, but I…I wanted you to have it before we go." No, not wanted. Needed.
Hermione handed him the box with a shaking hand, and sat down beside him on the couch.
Severus opened it and looked at her, his dark eyes shining. "It's perfect, Hermione. Thank you."
The meeting room was cold. Icy, in fact.
Hermione could still hear footsteps echoing in the hallway outside the room even after Severus shut the door behind them, closing them in.
Harry, Urquart, Tudorov, and three other wizards were already seated around a large oval table when they arrived. Based on the style and colour of their robes, Hermione guessed the other three were the current Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot, Gregory Selwyn, Head of the Auror Office, Connor Macmillan, and Senior Undersecretary to the Minister for Magic, Derwin Fawley.
"Master Snape. Madam Snape," Fawley said, indicating chairs for them to sit.
The wizards didn't bother to introduce themselves. Did they think such trivialities were beneath them? Or did they believe common curtesy to be a waste of time?
"In the light of today's unforeseen events in Diagon Alley, we've called you here to discuss the particulars of the situation with Ronald Weasley," continued Undersecretary Fawley, "and the charm placed on him by Minister Shacklebolt."
"The Wizengamot is currently investigating Minister Shacklebolt's circumvention of traditional court proceedings," added the Chief Warlock.
Fawley glanced at the Chief Warlock and narrowed his eyes.
"While the Minister is authorized to make decisions of this nature without directly involving the Wizengamot, it is considered somewhat irregular," clarified Fawley with a sour twist to his lips.
There was a slight pause as the wizards considered each other from opposite sides of the table. Hermione wondered idly if wands would be drawn. She preferred not to have to break up a duel, if it came to that.
The Head Auror cleared his throat.
"As we have established the facts of the case…," he drawled, allowing his words to trail off when he glanced at Severus, who had arched his eyebrow at the Head Auror's comment.
"How is it that you've 'established the facts of the case' without interviewing the victim?" Severus asked darkly. "You called us here. My wife is right here. Since you have interrupted our afternoon and requested our presence at this meeting, certainly there can be no reason to deprive her of her testimony in this case."
"I am a witness as well."
"There is no need—"
Hermione reached for his hand and squeezed it. "Severus, it's fine. Really. I'd rather not stay any longer than we have to."
"What exactly do you need from us, since apparently you do not require my wife's statement?" Severus asked snidely.
The Undersecretary chose not to answer Severus's question directly. "Since Minister Shacklebolt was the one who implemented the charm on Ronald Weasley, the responsibility for the charm is entirely his. Therefore, we do not hold you accountable for the results that were witnessed today."
"Well, thank Merlin," Hermione muttered sarcastically under her breath. "But technically, you were not witnessing the results of—"
Severus kicked her in the shin under the table. She clamped her mouth shut.
Undersecretary Fawley gave her a warning look. "As I stated, we do not necessarily disagree with the Minister's actions, including the application of the charm itself. However…" He steepled his fingers in an eerie impersonation of Dumbledore. "We find the stipulation for sentencing without parole to be rather…extreme."
Ah, now we're getting to it.
Hermione glanced at her bondmate. Apparently, he was trying to decide which words would be best to eviscerate them with. He surprised her by asking a question instead.
"Is Shacklebolt still stepping down?" Severus asked, his brow wrinkled in obvious contempt for the older wizards posturing around the table.
"Is Shacklebolt still stepping down?" he repeated.
"Yes, Minister Shacklebolthas resigned from his position," the Undersecretary said, correcting Severus as if he were a disrespectful child. "I assure you, Minister Shacklebolt's decision was quite unrelated to our current discussion. The Wizarding world needs to heal. Trust in the Ministry is more important than ever in the wake of the war and after the infiltration by—"
"Please, spare us—" Hermione interrupted, rolling her eyes.
Severus kicked her again. She bit her lip to keep herself from yelping and saying anything else.
Fortunately, Undersecretary Fawley ignored her.
"What do you propose?" Severus asked, his velvet baritone wavering with fury.
"The charm must be removed and the life sentence be rescinded. In turn, the Wizengamot will find Mr. Weasley guilty of attempted murder. The mandatory sentence for attempted murder is ten years. Truthfully, the Wizengamot and the Auror's Office are uncomfortable with anything beyond that."
Silence. Hermione saw Harry twitch and bite his cheek, presumably to keep his own mouth shut. She was impressed.
"We have a counter proposal," Severus said, as if he were discussing the sale of property and not negotiating life imprisonment for her former best friend. "We will agree to the sentence of ten years under these conditions.
"First, Mr. Weasley has been denied his opportunity to receive appropriate counseling at St Mungo's. We would like to request that he receive that counseling before going to Azkaban and that he be evaluated by St Mungo's again before his release."
"Why was Mr. Weasley not in St Mungo's receiving the appropriate therapy?" asked the Chief Warlock rather sharply.
The Head Auror opened his mouth to speak and snapped it shut, apparently thinking the better of it.
"That is a question you will need to ask of Minister-Elect Weasley directly," Severus said snidely.
"Go on," said Fawley, after a moment.
"Secondly," Severus continued, "although both the physical evidence gleaned from Mr. Weasley's room in Grimmauld Place and the multiple incidences of violence against my wife attest to the fact that Mr. Weasley is quite dangerous, we do not wish to condemn him to the maximum security wing of Azkaban. Therefore, we request that he be incarcerated in sections that are not guarded by dementors." Severus's lip curled into a sneer.
"Master Snape, it is widely known that dementors are no longer part of the guard staff of Azkaban," said Fowley, his voice rising indignantly.
"So says the Ministry." Severus held Fawley's stare. Coldly.
After a moment, the Undersecretary spoke. "Very well then, it's agreed," he sighed.
"If that is all?" Severus pushed his chair away from the oval table. Hermione followed his lead.
"Ah…" Fawley glanced at his cohorts. "Yes, I do believe that is all for now. Master Snape. Madam Snape. Good day."
Hermione glanced at Harry as she rose. He looked grim, but not wildly upset. Thank Merlin, Severus reached for her hand and they closed the door to the conference room behind them.
"Why did you make that request to keep Ron away from the dementors?" Hermione asked him as she removed her robes and sat down on their bed to toe off her trainers.
"Because if dementors guard Mr. Weasley, he will be even more dangerous should he be released." Severus answered, unbuttoning his frock coat. "After ten years, he will likely be insane."
"And you knew that the Ministry was still using dementors, even though they had announced they had dismissed them?"
"I knew." Severus didn't elaborate, which was fine by her.
"I know you, Severus Snape."
"What do you mean?" he asked, smirking at her as he hung up the black wool.
"There's only one reason you agreed to what they proposed so easily. You have a plan."
"In fact, I do." He smiled and settled down on the bed next to her. "We'll simply have to see to it that Potter is Minister in ten years when Weasley is scheduled for release."
She huffed a laugh. "You've noticed how long Harry keeps a grudge." Hermione rose to hang her own robes in the closet. "Well, then. Aren't you the planner? You might have to convince Harry first, though."
"I may or may not mention to him that the Minister for Magic has the authority to prevent the release of violent prisoners even after they have served their sentence if they continue to be a threat to another witch or wizard."
Hermione raised an eyebrow as she made her way back towards the bed. Severus reached up and grabbed her arm and pulled her to him until she was on his lap.
"I have to watch over you, angel. That's my job."
"Is it?" she asked playfully, her eyes flicking to the bed behind him.
"But it's not my only job," he smirked and kissed her. Deliciously.
Several hours later, Severus unfolded a late-edition-special Prophet that had arrived by just owl minutes earlier.
The newspaper's photographers had perfectly captured both the malevolent sneer frozen on Ron's face and the shock on Arthur Weasley's. The bastards had juxtaposed the two pictures across the entirety of the upper half of the front page.
Hermione supposed that the image of Ron with his hand gripping a knife should silence the faint whisper of guilt that momentarily plagued her, even after her visit to his room at Grimmauld. She found, instead, that it was cold comfort.
"Can I see it?" she asked.
He handed her the newspaper without comment.
War Hero Ronald Weasley Sentenced to Azkaban for Attempted Murder
Ronald Bilius Weasley, War Hero, Order of Merlin, and son of Arthur and Molly Weasley, has been sentenced to ten years in Azkaban for attempted murder. Sources close to the Prophet revealed his intended victim, Hermione (Granger) Snape, War Hero and Order of Merlin, had been attacked twice by Mr. Weasley within the last few weeks. Prophet sources have also learned that overwhelming evidence found at Mr. Weasley's residence suggests that he had been planning additional harm to Madam Snape.
Mr. Weasley was remanded to St Mungo's today for counseling, which must be completed before starting his prison sentence.
Additional terms of Mr. Weasley's sentence were unclear at the time of printing.
Hermione glanced up to meet Severus's infinitely black eyes.
"There's more," he said. "Keep reading."
She focused back on the Prophet.
Arthur Weasley Steps Down as Minister-Elect
"Holy shite," she muttered.
In an astounding turn of events, Arthur Weasley has resigned his position as Minister for Magic-Elect after an internal Ministry investigation unearthed that Mr. Weasley coerced several St Mungo's officials to release his youngest son, Ronald Bilius Weasley, from their inpatient detox and counseling programme only days after he had been admitted. Prophet sources confirmed that Ronald had been required to take part in a thirty day programme after a second physical attack on fellow War Hero, Hermione (Granger) Snape.
Undersecretary Sabastian Fawley released an official statement earlier today, confirming that although Mr. Weasley has stepped down as Minister-Elect, Kingsley Shacklebolt would not be returning as Minister.
"The Ministry of Magic is deeply troubled by the gross abuse of power in this situation," Undersecretary Fawley said in his official statement, "and we have taken the appropriate measures to rectify it. The Ministry understands the importance of trust, strong leadership, and continuity in times like these. To that end, I will remain in my position as Undersecretary for the foreseeable future. Expect an official announcement of the Ministry's choice for a new Minister for Magic tomorrow morning."
Arthur Weasley had been Minister Shacklebolt's personal recommendation as his replacement.
Neither Minister Shacklebolt nor Arthur Weasley were available for comment.
Hermione sighed and handed the Prophet back to Severus. Well, at least the day was nearly over.
"I'm enjoying watching this unfold from afar," Hermione said the following morning, turning the day's Prophet around so Severus could see the latest headline.
Connor Macmillan, Head of Auror Office, Confirmed as New Minister for Magic
"Don't think you're safe by any means. I'd say we're only one owl away from being called into the Wizengamot and being buried alive by paperwork, meetings, and committees," Severus responded with a smirk. He took a sip of his Earl Grey.
Hermione pointed to the bolded words under the fold.
Harry Potter Named Head of Auror Office
"Well, then," Hermione said. "That was quick."
"Part one of the plan complete, and no action was required on my part," Severus said smugly.
"Hmph." It was all Hermione could muster as she poured them both some more tea.
The relaxing morning slid into afternoon, and there had been little for her to do save contemplate the day's news. It had been the first pleasant day Hermione could remember enjoying in quite some time. She'd had already finished A Study in Advanced Charms, and—maybe for the first time in her life—she didn't feel like reading. She wandered aimlessly around the cottage's sitting room. Severus was out in the garden again, ensuring the warming charms were holding around the young plants.
She paused at the bookshelf and idly reached for the dictionary she bought him. Smiling, she sat down and ran her fingers over the leather cover. It fell open in her lap.
The letters on the pages shimmered and every entry began to reform into:
Angel [eyn-juh l] / noun
1. one of a class of spiritual beings; a celestial attendant of God.
5. a person having qualities generally attributed to an angel, as beauty, purity, or kindliness. As in: Hermione Snape is my angel.
Hermione laughed. She closed the dictionary and nestled the book back between her copy of Watch Over Me and Potions for Play and went out into the garden to be closer to her husband.
Hermione was happily enjoying a glass of white wine while watching Severus prepare their dinner salad when the distinctive CRACK of Apparition echoed through the kitchen window. She glanced at Severus. He shrugged.
"Harry!" she said, opening the door wide for her best friend to enter the sitting room. "Come in!"
"Hey. I hope I'm not interrupting anything," he said with an obvious glance at her glass.
"Not at all. Have you eaten? Would you like to stay for dinner?"
"Hermione is not cooking this evening, if that assists in your decision," Severus called from the kitchen.
"Haha," Hermione called back over her shoulder. "Well, if you can't stay for dinner, at least have a Butterbeer," she said, turning her back on Harry and walking towards the kitchen. "Maybe a glass of wine?"
"A Butterbeer would be brilliant," Harry said, following Hermione. "Ginny asked me to stop by and tell you that they took Molly into St Mungo's for evaluation."
"Oh." Hermione paused. How should she say this? "Perhaps it's for the best."
She glanced at her bondmate. Severus raised an eyebrow.
"Is Ginny okay?" Hermione asked, handing Harry a bottle.
"Yeah, I think so."
"Please accept my congratulations on your new position as Head Auror, Mr. Potter," Severus said, raising a glass of wine to Harry's Butterbeer.
"Yes! Congratulations on your new job, Harry." Hermione leaned in to hug her best friend.
"Hey, thanks," Harry said, flushing.
"I'm glad you stopped by," Hermione said. "Maybe you and Ginny could join us for dinner one of these days."
"That'd be great," Harry responded. "As long as you promise that you won't be cooking."
"Even I wouldn't put you through that," Severus said, and Hermione rolled her eyes at her two favorite wizards and laughed.
Five Weeks Later
Since Ron's thirty days in St Mungo's had been completed and he had been moved to a somewhat more permanent residence, Hermione had enjoyed the luxury of strolling from the cottage to Hogsmeade every afternoon on her own while Severus tended the garden. Rather, now that Ron was safely incarcerated in Azkaban, Severus allowed her to walk to the village and back by herself.
She knew she had never been truly alone, however.
Apparently, Hermione had been assigned some…protection. In the form of Aurors, in fact.
Her would-be bodyguards followed her everywhere when she ventured outside the property's wards. The Aurors tried to shadow her without being seen—and some did a better job than others.
But whether they were good at staying invisible or not, she knew they were there.
Hermione had made a bit of a game of it, actually. If she could catch one of their eyes through the glass from inside Honeydukes or from the opposite side of The Three Broomsticks, she would wink at them as they quickly looked away. Then she'd stare, unmoving, until they glanced up again, a mixture of embarrassment and frustration warring for control of their faces.
Hermione suspected collusion between one over-protective husband and one sneaky best friend was to blame. She didn't mind. She would happily play the vulnerable, defenseless girl needing protection if they became closer. She hoped a shared secret could forge a friendship between these two people she loved so dearly.
She was nearly home. After waving exuberantly at the disillusioned Auror near the bend in the path, she closed one fist protectively around her discovery and sprinted from the road towards the wooden front gate of the cottage. She heard the faint CRACK of the Auror Apparate away as she reached the boundary of their property.
Opening the front door with such force it swung around and banged into the sitting room wall, she called, "Severus, Severus! Come quick!"
Her husband appeared in the door frame leading to the backyard almost instantly, dirt trailing out of his left glove and onto the wooden floor.
"Severus! Guess what? Finally, after all this time! I finally got you!"
He looked at her blankly. She noticed his attempt to loosen the grip on the ebony wand that had somehow appeared in his right hand.
Severus looked down from her face to her fist; she opened it slowly, revealing a chocolate frog—sans one leg—and the card that had come with it in the package. She beamed at him.
"Look! War Hero and Order of Merlin, First Class, Severus Snape!"
The frog made a pathetic attempt to jump off her hand. She popped it in her mouth before it got away. "I got you!" she said around a mouthful of chocolate.
"Yes. Yes, you did," he said, finding his voice, his lips slowly forming into smile.
One Month Later
"What do you have planned for the rest of the day? Or should I say 'evening'?" she amended, glancing out the window to the darkening sky.
"Something to get your mind off things and back on me."
Hermione sat down on the rug in front of the fire, wine glass in hand.
"Really?" she asked. "And what would that be?"
He walked over to the bookshelf and pulled out Potions for Play.
"What do you say we try page 33?" he asked, presenting her with the book.
She opened to the page and gulped.
"Sweet Merlin, Severus…what…" She scrunched up her eyes and rotated the book as she tried to figure out exactly what she was looking at. "What are they…?"
"You told me once that you have a very vivid imagination," he said.
She glanced up at her husband. With a flourish, her Potions Master presented her with a flask marked page 33 and the most sinful smirk she had ever seen.
It was going to be one delightful evening.