Hello everyone! If you are new here please go read Hermione's Future before reading this one. If you are not new welcome back! Many of you said that you wanted a sequel in the last story so here it is. This one is going to be a lot slower pace and shows Hermione's progress through her apprenticeship. Later on in this story there will be a conflict but I won't tell you what that is until we get there. You can always guess though. I will love to hear all your guesses. Anyway on to the first chapter!

September 1st was almost here, which meant that Hermione Granger had to prepare for her apprenticeship with Severus Snape. Over the past few months she had been vacationing around the world with the love of her life. After the war, the two of them both agreed they needed a break. She was still trying to recover from what she went through, but it was difficult for her. She couldn't shake the fear or the dreams she had been having. She knew it was getting ridiculous at this point, but she couldn't help it. Severus was aware of her suffering and tried to make her feel better, but at times he felt hopeless with the situation. He again tried to offer her a potion in order for her to sleep, but she adamantly said no. He didn't understand why it was such a big deal. It was one sip not a whole vial, but he held his tongue knowing arguing with her would not help.

She was so excited to start her apprenticeship. She had wanted to do this for years and to get to work with Severus was a dream come true. Who wouldn't want to work with the one they love? She always had a passion for Potion's and to finally get to study and eventually teach it was overwhelming for her. She was trying to learn as much knowledge as she could before the students arrived. Throughout the break she read book after book about potions and she even made some using his lab. She knew it was silly but she was a perfectionist. She needed to succeed.

She currently was sitting in their living room reading over her textbook that Severus had given her. Today was the day that students were returning for school and she wanted to be prepared for it. Severus went over all the details about her apprenticeship already. She would be helping him make potions, she will also be in the classroom with him watching him teach and helping other students if needed, last of all she was going to have to come up with a project regarding potions towards the end of her apprenticeship. She didn't know what project she was going to come up with, but she knew there was so much time left.

"Reading over that book again?" Severus asked as he entered their living room carrying a stack of papers.

She looked up from her textbook and slowly sat it back down on the coffee table. "Today is the day that students are returning, Severus. We both know that. I just want to be mentally prepared for it. I don't want to make any mistakes."

He plopped down next to her on the couch and set his stack of papers down next to her book. "You know you will do fine."

"How do you know that?" She asked him.

"Because my lovely little witch you are smart and if I didn't think you would be capable of doing this I wouldn't have accepted it. Are you ready to see your past classmates again?"

"I don't know honestly. First years are easy to take control of, but seventh years I don't know how they will respond. I was just a student a few months ago. I don't know if they will show me the same respect that you have," she said worriedly. She bit her lip nervously thinking about how she was going to be able to take control of the class.

"I have a story for you actually, Hermione. I wasn't always this scary Potion's Professor that everyone saw. My first year of teaching was difficult. I was only twenty two years old and I knew that in order to gain the respect that my older colleagues had, I had to show them that I was strict. I walked in there, slammed the windows with my wand, turned around to face the class, and everyone stared at me in awe. I began to speak to them and as I spoke not one student interrupted me. They all sat there quietly listening because of my entrance. Throughout the year I was quick to take away points and hand out detentions if any of them stepped out of line and as each day passed the fewer problems I had. Everyone, in a way, gave me respect and didn't dare to try anything even though I was very young at the time. I am telling you this story because I don't want you to think that you can't do it because of your age. You can Hermione, but you are going to have to separate yourself from student to upcoming Professor. If you show the students that you are still the student they knew a few months ago they will take advantage of it. I am not saying you have to go in there and be mean like I was, but you have to be strict. You have to take points away if you see things that are wrong. Don't let them walk all over you and of course I will be there by your side if anyone steps out of line."

She nodded slowly at him taking in all that he said. "How long will it be before I start taking over the class?"

"We'll see, Hermione. I might let you do a few things with the first and possibly the second years, but that won't be for at least a month or a two. You just started. Don't over work yourself."

She picked up one of the papers and stared at it quizzically. "What are these for?"

"They are lesson plans Hermione. Actually, I'm glad you are here to see them since you will be making these yourself eventually. I know this might surprise you, but even though we are a wizard school we still have to create lesson plans. It's not just writing directions on the board and watching students make potions. There are strict guidelines that we have to follow. We can't just introduce a random potion, which is why there are different levels of potion making. The lesson plan you are looking at is the first day for first years. We are slowly introducing the art that is potion making. We are not having them make anything just yet, but we will explain the process and I will model for them how to make a potion. It will be a fairly simple one."

"Are you going to do your famous speech about silly wand waving?" She asked with a smirk.

"I didn't know it was famous, but yes I usually do. It is a quick way to introduce myself and what I expect out of my students. I don't care if the student is 10 or if they are 17. I expect the same behavior out of any of my students. I also suggest you create your own speech when you become a Professor. Everyone has a way to introduce themselves. Mine leaves no room for argument."

"I love your speech honestly. I know for a fact that you scared everyone that day."

He chuckled and said, "Obviously not you."

"I studied so hard for all my classes months before school even started. I was so excited to go to Hogwarts. When you come from a muggle family it's different. You are the only magic one in the family and you get all these big heavy tomes and I ate it all up. I wanted to share my knowledge with everyone, but I guess it came off as overbearing. Are you still going to show favoritism to the Slytherin's?" She asked hesitantly.

"Well, the war is now over Hermione, but I am still bias when it comes to my own house. For your sake, I will lessen it and try to call on a few other students. Is that fair?"

"Yes I guess that will have to do."

Hermione continued to study the lesson plans he had stacked up on the table until he announced that it was time to head to the Great Hall for the welcoming feast. As they walked down the hallway, Hermione felt her nerves start to mount.

"It's just a welcoming feast Hermione. There is no reason to be nervous. When we get to the table there will be a chair to my right. You will sit in that chair during every meal."

They walked through a secret passage way that Hermione had never seen before. They reached a door and Severus opened it for her. The door led to the back of the great table. "This is how we get to the Great Hall without walking through the double doors." They walked over to their seats and Severus pulled out Hermione's chair for her.

"Thanks Severus." She kissed him on the cheek and she took her seat. He sat down next to her and waited for the rest of the professors to arrive.

He leaned over and whispered to her, "Keep in mind when we are in front of students do not call me by my first name. Even though I love your affection you cannot kiss or hug me in front of the students either."

She frowned and nodded her head. "I understand," she said in disappointment. She loved kissing and hugging him. It wasn't fair that she couldn't do so in class, but she understood his reasoning.

He looked around the hall and leaned over and kissed her on the lips quickly. "Don't be upset. You know I don't care what people think, but when there are students around we have to act professional. There will be plenty of time outside of class for that. Now smile for me. I hate seeing you upset."

"You're right Severus." Her lips quirked back up into a smile.

Minerva walked in and took a seat to Severus's left. "Good evening you two. It is almost time for the first years to arrive. Are you ready Hermione for your first year to start?"

"With Severus by my side, I believe so. This is what I always wanted to do."

"You'll do great Hermione and if you ever need anyone I'm always here to help you," Minerva said reassuringly. "Well I would love to sit here and chat, but duty calls." She stood up from the table and walked down the aisle to the double doors.

The rest of the Professor's arrived taking their seats. A few of them nodded at Hermione, while the others sat there patiently for the new students to arrive.

"Here they come," Severus whispered next to her.

The double doors opened and in walked the second through seventh year students. They went to their tables and took their seats. Hermione's eyes briefly caught Ginny's flaming red hair and remembered what Severus told her. She was an upcoming professor. She had to be professional, which included hanging out with Ginny.

A few minutes passed and in walked Minerva, leading the new first years. The new first years were abnormally a larger group than last years. Part of the reason was possibly because the war was over. There wasn't any danger anymore. Parents started to send their students back to school again now that it was deemed safe. Minerva reached the front of the table and walked up the steps. She approached the stool that had the sorting hat sitting on top of it. "When I call your name, you shall come forth, I will place the Sorting Hat on your head, and you will be sorted into your houses." She began to read off the list of students.

Hermione scanned the faces of the new students and took note of the ones who were sorted into Gryffindor and also the ones who were sorted into Slytherin. Out of the 60 new first years there were 15 Slytherin's, 16 Gryffindor's, 14 Ravenclaw's, and 15 Hufflepuff's.

Dumbledore approached the podium and began to speak. "Welcome everyone to another year here at Hogwarts. I hope your summer break treated you well. I would like to again remind you that the Forbidden Forest is completely off limits to students. As some of you have noticed, we have a new addition to the great table. She is our newest apprentice here at Hogwarts. She will be in your Potion's classroom with Professor Snape. Please welcome Mistress Granger."

Severus slightly nudged Hermione next to her and she quickly stood up from the table realizing that was her cue to introduce herself. She smiled at all the students and she quickly sat back down, embarrassed by all the attention she was getting.

"Now, let the feast begin." Food appeared on the table and everyone began to eat.

"It's good to see you 'Ermione," Hagrid said next to her.

She smiled at Hagrid happy to see him too. "It's nice to see you too Hagrid. How was your break?"

"Well Fang and I went to 'elp out the trolls to the west of us. They have been having a problem with the other animals around, but with us there we were able to fix the issue. How was yours?"

"Great actually, I really loved traveling. It was nice to get a break and we saw some very lovely sights."

"I didn't know you were coming back here, but I guess I shouldn't be so surprised. You 'ave always been smart and loved learning. Good luck to you 'Ermione. I know you will do great."

"Thank you Hagrid. I appreciate it."

When the feast was over, Severus led Hermione down into the dungeons and towards the Slytherin Common Room. He approached the wall that led to the entrance of the common room. He whispered the password and the wall opened for him, granting him entrance. The two walked into the common room and stared at all the new students. "Welcome back students. I am here to remind you what I expect as your head of house. How you act portrays how our house is to other students and also portrays me. You will not embarrass me or the name of Salazar Slytherin. Also, I suggest you try to earn as much points as possible. I can only help as much as I can. We have not won the House Cup in years, but I think this can be our year. Now, I suggest you get some rest and be prepared tomorrow. Goodnight." He left the common room, his robes billowing as he went.

"Did you notice all the older students glaring at me?" Hermione whispered to him as they continued to walk down the dungeons.

"It's because you are a Gryffindor," he explained.

"I think some of them are still mad about the war. I mean some of them had parents that were involved."

He turned to her and cupped her cheek in his warm hand. "I love you Hermione and I will protect you from them. Don't you worry about it. They might be mad now, but they will be thankful in the long run."

Together the two of them walked back to their rooms pleased with how things went on their first day back.