I know it's been a while since I've updated, but I've only recently found again the story's files I thought I had lost. It took me a couple of days to read again the story and do a bit of revision; 100 chapters are a lot!
Hope you enjoy!
Entering the living room waiting for breakfast to be served, the inhabitants of Malfoy Manor found Alya laying on her stomach on the couch with her feet swinging in the air and a bunch of papers in her hands.
"What are you doing?" Narcissa asked bothered by her position. The girl was also wearing an outrageously short pair of shorts and a tank top. She despised muggle clothes and ones that showed so much skin were even worse.
"Uh? Oh, good morning everyone. I'm reviewing some of my notes on the effect of werewolf blood with different substances and agents" she said
"Already hard at work, little lady?"
"Sure am. I'm excited at the thought alone of this project, plus I'm an awful workaholic" she smiled bashfully. Voldemort felt a pang at this statement. Regulus always told him the same. Maybe if she showed enough skill with this werewolf project he could talk to her about that thing. He would have to wait and see.
"Made any progress?" Draco asked curiously
"No progress per se, I need time to study and research. But it looks promising" she smiled.
"Are you sure you'll be able to do it alone?" Rabastan asked concerned "I know that you have your NETWs that are highest standard that British ones and with top scores, but this kind of things usually takes a mastery in the subject to tackle"
"Well, I'll be working on my mastery this year. It would be a good potion to present to the guild if I completed it before the end of my apprenticeship. But I would need another two potions invented by me in that case" she mused.
"You are quite ambitious" Voldemort drawled
"I'm a Slytherin" she said shrugging "Ambitious is my middle name"
He chose to ignore the last jab hinting at his presumed paternity of the girl, preferring to serve himself some tea.
A knock sounded at the door of his study interrupting his work.
"Enter" he hissed
"My Lord" the black clad man resembling a bat entered and kneeled in front of his Lord
"My Lord, the boy has left the home of his relatives. Dumbledore himself went to fetch him and he's now housed at the Burrow, though the oldest son has placed strong wards around the property."
"What else?" he pushed
"The Headmaster notified me that I would be relieved of my post of potions professor and take up the vacant DADA spot."
"No news of the old coot himself?"
Severus paused looking at the pale snake-like visage of the Dark Lord, evaluating how much he should tell or omit "I know that he had been afflicted by some kind of curse during the summer, my Lord, his hand is blackened but it seems that he will heal"
"Is that so?" he asked curiously. There was no way he could heal from the flesh rotting curse he put on his ring, it could be temporary stopped but in the end it would prevail and kill. It seemed that the little girl was right and his slippery snake spy was keeping information for him, not only that, but possibly plotting his demise along with Dumbledore and his light fools. He hated to admit it but he was glad he heeded her warning and took her advice in how to deal with the traitor.
"Yes, my Lord. He said that he had encountered the curse before and knew of the way to counter it" the man blatantly lied to his face. The impertinence!
"I see. I want you to report anything new you find. I want information on the Order, its location and its members" he said
"As you wish my Lord"
"Good. You are dismissed" he said waving him off nonchalantly "Oh, Severuss. You will come only when I call for you, if you have information call me using the mark beforehand" he added "No need for the old coot to suspect you if you vanish too often from the castle"
"Of course my Lord" for a moment he had feared that the Dark Lord suspected him of something, Merlin forbid if he thought he was betraying him, but the explanation relaxed him. He had no need to worry.
"You know. If you really need all these information I would be willing to supply… for the right price that is" a voice startled him and raising quickly, wand drawn, he saw the boy, Blaise Zabini, appearing from within the shadows of his curtains
"What are you doing in my study, boy?" he hissed dispelling the glamour from his person
"Apart from snooping around?" he replied cheekily "I was curious about your meeting with the great bat and as I said, I can offer information"
"How could you? You're just a boy?"
He smirked smugly "How about a bet then? If I find out all you asked of Snape, you will pay me handsomely for my information"
"And if you lose?"
He shrugged "You have nothing to lose,"
"And what do I get if I win?" the dark lord pressed, amused by the audacity of this young wizard
"Mm… let's see.. If I lose, I will take your mark"
He chuckled "You sound pretty sure of yourself, boy. I'm in" he said leaning back in his leather chair and crossing his arms "I expect my info within a week"
"I won't need a week" he laughed disappearing in the shadows again.
"Interesting child" he appraised to the empty room
It was merely a day later that the Dark Lord found the boy slouching in his chair, feet propped on the desk and a folder ready for him to read.
"Out of my chair, you insolent whelp" he hissed, irritated when the boy took his sweet time moving "Didn't your mother teach to not enter other people's rooms"
"Afraid not" Blaise hummed resuming his position in a chair in front of the desk "Oh, but I know everything about fooling idiots to drain them of their money"
"Charming" he said drily
"Well… aren't you going to read your information?"
"Boy, it has been merely a day; there is no way you could have gotten all I asked in such little time. If you wrote banalities that everyone and their sister know, I will crucio you until you're nothing but a drooling idiot"
"Yeah, sounds fun but not exactly my chosen poison when it comes to dying" Blaise replied unaffected.
Voldemort had to give it to him, either he was more of a fool than he thought or he had balls of fucking steel.
He opened the folder and began to read boringly. Soon though his eyes widened at the sheer amount of information written in the papers. There was everything. Their headquarters, complete with detailed blueprints, a list of wards surrounding the place, tips on creaking steps, even a secret magical passageway from the second world war that with a complex space distortion ward led right out of London; info on the senile old elf, event the portrait of Walburga that screamed whenever someone entered the house.
Then there was a full list of order members, complete with any info about them he could ever wish and more, from birthday to blood type, from newts scores to profession and personal skills. He wrote their addresses, again complete with wards and all. Even more, there was a complete transcription of an Order meeting taken place just the night before.
"I'm good, aren't I?" the boy hummed smugly
"I'm impressed, Mr. Zabini. You just did what none of my death eaters could do, and the only one spy refused to give me" he said leaning back "How does… ten thousand galleons sound?"
"I will have the goblins make the transfer to your vault within the day"
"Pleasure doing business with you, your Darkness" how cheeky.
"Will you tell me how you managed such a feat though?"
"Well... as the muggles like to say. 'A magician never reveals his secret'" with a last smirk, he vanished from his seat enveloped in shadows.
'I really need to investigate in this boy. There's no way a sixteen Hogwarts student can be capable of such magic as traveling through shadows or have the skills to spy in a room full of wizards many of which aurors, not taking into consideration Mad Eye' he thought, going back to study the information the file provided.
With that, he could slowly kill off all the enemies, leaving Dumbledore to be blamed for not doing anything to protect them. He would die alone and abandoned by his precious followers. Yes, he liked this idea.
"I bet my father was speechless when you gave him all that" Alya giggled
"Quite" he nodded crossing his arms behind his head and stretching his full length on the bed
"You'll have to tell me how you did it someday" she said "Oh, I was able to determine which ingredient of the wolfsbane potion is so damaging to werewolves who take it. Pity it is the main ingredient that lets them keep their mind during the transformation and without it the potion is nothing more than foul smelling water"
Hooking a hand behind her neck he pulled her down and kissed away her pout "You don't need that crappy potion. The one you'll make from scratch will be ten times better, you'll see"
She smiled, wondering once again what she did to deserve such an attentive and caring boyfriend "Have I told you I love you today?"
"Mm… I don't believe so, mia cara" 'my dear'
"I love you, Blaise"
"I love you too, tesoro" 'darling' he told her back, locking their lips again.
"No Headmaster, the Dark Lord did not suspect anything. He is still sure of my loyalties" Severus said in his slow drawl
"Very good, my boy. I want you to keep spying on him. Something tells me that he'll try something this year."
"And remember, when the time comes, what you will have to do"
The potion master pressed his lips tightly together, he hated that the headmaster ordered him to kill him. He knew that the curse was incurable and would eventually kill him but why couldn't the man just wait for his time to come instead of forcing him to murder someone?
He knew his soul was already tainted and no matter how much he tried to redeem himself, it would never be enough. But he had never killed before. To take the life of someone, to have their blood on his hands, it would break him in a way that even losing his beloved Lily didn't do.
"Very well. Now you should go and draw the lesson plan for the incoming year. You finally have the DADA position after all. Remember, we don't want them to learn too much though"
"I will have to speak with Horace, I'm sure that he will be happy to admit Mr. Potter and Mr. Weasley to his class even though they didn't achieve the required score. Oh, well. He is the boy who lived after all, he is entitled to some favoritism"
The man wanted to sneer. They boy got nothing by favoritism by the old fool and that made him arrogant and think that he was entitled to break every rule he could without consequences. Just like his father.
"I must leave now, we don't have much time until the start of the school year"
"Of course, of course. Off you go, my boy" the man waved him off, popping another lemon drop in his mouth.