Disclaimers: I do NOT own most of these characters. I DO, however, own Rebecca Robinson and any other character you DO NOT recognize. I would also like to thank you all for taking the time to read and review.

This story is finally done. I cant believe it, after all my stories I have sin my head, I have finally completed one. I am so glad that you all were a part of it. Thank you for all your good words, well thought out comments and encouragement.

Thanks to you all.

Much Love

Now.on to the last chapter.Enjoy!

RWH

Twelve

Rebecca stood silently before her mirror and wiped away a tear. She stood straight in her blue and gold graduation gown, however, she didn't feel like celebrating, in fact, she felt like ripping the gown off and throwing it into the fire. This was supposed to be a very important day, A day that she was supposed to remember for the rest of her life, but she felt like it was the ending. It was her graduation day and she really didnt feel like going. No one she knew, other than her friends that were also graduating today, was going to be there so why should she bother?

She hadnt bothered telling Severus. She had heard through that formidable grapevine that he had been spotted at a jeweler buying an engagement ring with a beautiful woman at his side.

He was getting married and she was trying her best to keep her heart from shattering in even more shards. He hadnt told her yet and she didnt want to hear it. She was scared to hear it. She was too afraid that she would finally break down and never recover again.

She had given up any talking with him with any semblance of intelligence anymore. Her heart thudded heavily every time she was next to him and yet, he continued to treat her as he had in the past.

As his ward.

She heard a knock at her door and she rubbed at her face willing her tears to stop.

"Lets go, Becks or we are going to be late." Greg called out impatiently.

"Coming."

Rebecca pulled her dark hair back into a low tail and perched the graduation hat on top of her head. Gently she reached up and wrapped her hand around the necklace Severus had given her years ago at her Hogwarts graduation. Remembering that wonderful day she let her eyes settle on her reflection one last time, trying to bring some form of happiness to this occasion, before turning and leaving her room to go to the commencement ceremony with the others.

~~~

The sun shone down in the stadium as she followed the person in front of her and stopped at her seat. There was a buzz in the air as the excitement grew from all her co-students as they all realized that this was the day that they all were to become adults. To live and work and to exist for oneself only. It was an interesting idea, to living alone and to work in her own place of choice. To exist as herself and not as someone else's responsibility.

It was a dizzying fact.

She turned to the stage and waited, standing, until the headmistress rose from her chair and approached the erected podium. She motioned everyone to sit and as one, the whole student body and guests alike sat.

Rebecca gathered her robe around her and took a seat.

The prepared speech of the Headmistress droned on, addressing the graduating students and giving out advice and what she assumed was encouragement. Rebecca did her best to listen, but she was having a very hard time keeping her attention where it was supposed to go until the headmistress paused and smiled brightly. Becca turned back to her and wrinkled her brow in wonderment.

"Now! Now that that is all said and done with. We have a special guest speaker today, a surprise speaker." Headmistress Goldive smiled and held her hand up for silence. "I know it's not a custom for us but as you will see, it is an honor to have this speaker. A few of you leaving here today have had the pleasure of knowing this man, and I am sure many more of you have had the pleasure of experiencing his vast knowledge during your seven years under his watchful eyes at the exemplary school of wizard and witchcraft.Hogwart's."

Rebecca's ears perked up at the mention of her alma mater and a whisper rose up from the crowd. The headmistress turned to her left and all eyes turned as well. A shimmer of sparkles rose from the platform and before anyone could blink, there stood a very familiar, tall and frail looking Professor Dumbledore. His smile wide and happy as the gasps echoed throughout the stadium.

Surprised, Becca was immediately on her feet applauding loudly, a split second later others joined her enthusiastic clapping. Albus stood silently as the applause overwhelmed him and he motioned them to sit, to settle down his grin plastered across his face. His eyes twinkled down at Becca's delighted expression and winked. She beamed up at him in joy.

"You know him?" The boy on her right queried.

"He's my adopted Godfather." She grinned even more at the look of awe in the boy's face.

Albus smiled down at them as the din wore off and he cleared his throat.

"Thank you all very much that was a wonderful welcome. I am completely at a loss for words.nearly."

He smiled and turned to his right.

"First of all, I would like to thank Headmistress Goldive for her invitation to be here tonight. I have always wanted to come but until recently, I have been a very busy man. The war with Voldemort took a lot out of me and now that it has been over with, I have no more excuses not to be here."

He chuckled softly.

"I am not much of a speaker but I only have a few simple words of advice to you, to those of you going out into the real world. It is a most difficult place out here and you will find the roads are not always paved but rough and bumpy. You must find your way around them and don't always count on others to help you. There are those out there in our world that would use that to dominate you, such as Voldemort did. But, use your judgement when confronted with something you do not understand. Use the inner voice that you have inside your consciousness and remember. That voice is rarely ever wrong. Listen to it and with its help, you will live a happy and long life. As I have."

He smiled down at Rebecca.

"Live your life to its fullest and don't give up hope. Love and happiness is just around the corner. It is your job to find that corner and to stake your claim. And do not." He allowed his eyes to go over the whole crowd, students and guests alike. "Do not allow ANYONE to take it away from any of you. Fight for what you want. Fight for your right to be happy, and most certainly, Fight for your choices, for they are your choices and no one else's."

Dumbledore stepped back from the podium, turned back to Headmistress Goldive and bowed low.

"I thank you for the invite and I thank you for allowing me to come."

Becca rose to her feet again and applauded loudly. His words made sense. If she could not have what she wanted then she would fight for a life the she needed. She would find a way to be happy without Severus.

She was so happy to see Albus that she did not stop to think that if Albus knew about the graduation ceremony, then it stood to reason that Severus did as well. She was just too happy to see Albus after so long.

She beamed as she waved at the headmaster as he took a seat, waving back causing more of the students to look at her curiously, but she didnt care. It was turning out to be a nice day after all.

The commencement went well as the names were called one by one. Each student walked up to the stage, received his or her diploma, and with any hope, along with invites to join the various schools around the world. From her advantage point, she could see that there werent many invites being handed out. She had hoped that she had sent her papers in early enough.

"Rebecca Robinson."

She stood up, smoothed down her gown, and with her head held up, proudly marched up to the podium. She reached out to shake hands with Headmistress Goldive and accepted her diploma parchment.

"Congratulation, Miss Robinson, I hope you have a wonderful life from here on out." The elderly woman smiled and Becca grinned back.

"I will, thank you." She replied and stepped to her woman's right to be congratulated by her other professors,

She couldnt stop the grin from spreading across her delighted face as they all congratulated her and passed her thick parchments bundles as she went down the line. She took them all in her shaking hands until she stopped before Albus, There she stopped and flung her arms around him to give him a big hug. He chuckled and passed a parchment of his own into her hand with a wink.

"I know you didnt apply, but I couldn't let the chance slip away." He spoke softly.

She nodded tearfully and took the parchment bundle from him, along with the others in hand she returned to her seat, never once looking out into the audience, not expecting to see a pair of dark eyes, watching proudly from the back of the arena.

Once Rebecca took a seat again she looked down at the papers in her hands. All were invitations to join a faculty at one school or another. There was Durmstrang in Bulgaria, Beauxbaton in France, Maremma in New Orleans, and most frightening of all, Hogwart's

She looked up just in time to see Albus giving her another wink. A job, at Hogwart's, could she do it? Knowing that Severus and his new wife would be there too?

She sighed inwardly before turning her gaze to the other offers.

No, she decided. It would not be a good idea to work at the same school Severus worked at. It would be to hard for her, to hard to work with a man that she was in love with, a married man no less.

No, she didnt want to place him in any more awkward situations. She had given him enough of those situations in the last three years to last him a lifetime. With a sigh she gathered the invites back up and slipped them into her cloak. She would go through them later; perhaps Maremma's school for young witches, in the United States would be the best choice, It was far enough away.

She stopped dwelling on the subject and forced her mind to pay attention to the rest of the ceremony, finally, to her relief, it was over. She stood with the others as the Headmistress exclaimed that they ere now graduated and can now leave as adults. She congratulated her nearest neighbors and moved towards the podium to speak with Albus.

He saw her approach and moved to meet her halfway.

"Ah, Rebecca, congratulations again."

"Thank you Professor, I didnt know you were going to be speaking tonight. It was a very pleasant shock."

His eyes twinkled merrily as he patted her hand in his, gently.

"A shock that wasnt too difficult to overcome I hope?"

"Oh, Gods no! I am so happy to see you." She leaned in to hug him again. "I missed you."

He smiled and patted her back affectionately. "As I have missed you." He kissed her forehead and pulled back to smile down at her. "So, have you looked at the offers presented to you just yet?"

"I have only just glanced at them, but havent actually gone through them as yet."

"And.Hogwart's?"

"I really dont know, Albus.I dont think.well, Severus."

"What about me?" A deep voice interrupted and she whipped around, surprise on her face.

"Oh, Hi.I. I didnt think." Her voice quivered softly.

"Didnt think I would come? I almost didnt." His eyes narrowed as he spoke. "Since I did not receive an invitation."

Her face flushed deeply.

"I didnt think you would come after our.. last disagreement."

He sighed and reached out pulling her into a hug. "Just because we had a falling out, doe not mean that I have stopped loving you Becca. Its the main reason I am here now."

Albus cleared his throat. "If you will excuse me I see a few old acquaintances." He nodded his head and strolled off leaving Severus and Rebecca alone. She still wrapped up in his arms.

Not wanting to pull away but feeling that she should, she moved to break the hug. Considering his refusal to step up their relationship to the next level, she sighed lightly and pulled away shielding her gaze from his view.

"I am sorry I didnt send an invitation to you, Sir, I really didnt think you would want to come." She said softly while staring intently at the ground.

"Becca, I have been to all of your accomplished milestones in the short time you came to live with me. I would never miss any of them especially one as momentous as this." He reached out and gently lifted her face to meet his searching gaze. "Surely you understand that."

She nodded as best as she could with him holding her chin in his fingers. "Im so sorry, I should have known. I guess you are right, I can still be a 'child' sometimes." She sighed and pulled her face away from him and looked down again, not wanting him to see her tearing up once more.

"Becca, look at me."

"In a moment." She sniffed trying to get her emotions back under control before she dared look back at him.

He sighed and shook his head. "Rebecca Nicole Robinson.Look at me."

Surprised by the usage of her full name she turned her moist eyes up at him, the sadness in her eyes caused him to frown.

"Must I always make you cry." He spoke softly and pulled her into another embrace. "Its going to be like torture for you isn't it? To live and teach at the same school with me?" He pulled back and smiled teasingly at her. "Im hoping, however you will run dry after the first few years."

"I havent decided on where Im going to teach yet, Sir." She sniffed and looked straight at his chin, not wanting to meet his eyes.

"If you are going to keep calling me Sir, I swear I am going to strangle you."

She couldnt stop the smile from forming, she had missed his teasing over the last months and it was almost like old times. She sighed as she felt him reach up and brush a tear from her cheek. "Sorry, SIR!" She giggled a little at his raised eyebrow before continuing. "I havent properly looked over the offers I've been handed. I had a thought that maybe Maremma's."

"Have you looked at the Hogwart's offer yet?"

"No, not yet."

"Then do so now, if you please. I admit I am eager to see what you think, after all I did help in its presentation."

She frowned, but nodded and pulled out the parchments from her cloak, She found the one with the Hogwart's seal and with a glance up at him as she unrolled the parchment, reading slowly.

Hogwart's School of Witchcraft and Wizardry invites Mrs. Rebecca Snape to ascend to the title of Professor. The job offered is that of Muggle Studies with an apprenticeship of Potions to be assisted by Professor Severus Snape.

Sincerely,

Albus Dumbledore Headmaster

Her brows furrowed in confusion after reading the short message. The way it was addressed didnt seem right. Mrs. Rebecca Snape, What in Merlin's name did Albus think he was doing addressing it that way. Was it some kind of sick joke? Forms of teasing that she didnt understand? He must not have known of her feelings for Severus, for if he did, he certainly would never have written something like this. Not now, Not so soon after Severus's engagement.

She frowned and folded the parchment up feeling her chest aching, wishing with all her might that it were true.

"I dont understand this, what." She looked up at Severus and gasped loudly. In his hand was a small black box, opened to reveal a beautiful solitaire diamond ring. His dark eyes were smiling.

"I cant very well have my wife teaching at another school, let alone one all the way in America, now can I?"

Her mouth dropped and her eyes flooded with tears causing him to chuckle at her look of astonishment. He reached out for her hand and she felt herself shaking uncontrollably.

"If this.. If this is. some kind of. Joke." Her chest felt like a hippogriff was sitting on it, so that she could barely breath.

"Its not a joke, Rebecca, I am dead serious." He replied bending down on one knee and smiling up at her. "Rebecca Nicole Robinson, I love you with all my heart and soul. It has been an excruciating wait for me. Three long years I have wanted to tell you that I loved you, that I want to be with you for the rest of my life. I couldnt say before how much I loved you. You were too young. " He rose a hand in the air to stop her from saying anything. " .But now you are finally of a proper age for me to ask, Rebecca, Will you marry me?"

"YES!" She screamed falling into his arms crying heavily with newfound happiness. "YES! YES! YES!"

His arms wrapped tightly around her as their lips finally came together after seven long and intensely teasing years. A burning, soul searing kiss that left them breathless when they finally separated. He gazed down at her lovingly and tenderly ran a finger over her lips.

"Gods, I love you Becca. I promise I will make you the happiest woman that ever lived."

"I love you too, Severus.and you just did."

He brought her into another kiss and she relinquished all of herself into it pressing herself against him. Parting again she leaned into his chest, letting herself settle there with happiness in her heart.

"Oh, Gods! What about Claire?" She asked as the woman suddenly jumped unexpectedly into her thoughts.

"What about her?" He kissed her head and she looked up at him.

"I thought."

"You were misinformed.obviously."

She beamed up at him and pulled him back down for another kiss.

"Ah! So, I take it that it is all settled then?" The familiar voice startled them and they both grinned at Albus as he appeared with a tall, sleek woman on his arm.

"Indeed." Severus smiled and took the ring from the box and slipped it onto her finger. "She is coming to Hogwart's AFTER our honeymoon."

"Congratulations, Severus." The woman smiled at the both of them. "I hope you two will be very happy together."

"Thank you Claire." He glanced down at Rebecca and grinned. Becca looked at her then back at Severus then back to the woman, obvious confusion covered her face.

The woman gave her a wink and tucked her arm in Albus's signifying her claim was staked in another corner. Becca grinned widely at Albus.

Albus and Claire exchanged a look before the elder man nodded. "We shall see you in a few months then." And with another trademark twinkle apparated them both away, leaving the newly formed couple to plan their future.

Together.

FINI

A/Ns and Acknowledgements:

I wish to take the time to thank each and everyone of you who took precious time to review this story. To each and everyone of you, I want to give a big hardy THANK YOU!

PLEASE DON'T FORGET TO REVIEW! I AM BEGGIN YOU

RWH