A/N: I know that it took a very long time to complete this chapter, but between training for Student Government and the blackout, it took me a while to write this. I hope it's worth it.
Thanks to my reviewers!
And to the Anonymous idiot who decided to flame-I wouldn't have minded if you told me that you thought my story sucked, but at lease have the decency to read all that's there and not review after the third chapter when there are 12 to be read. Also, don't be a spineless creep and flame anonymously.
A couple of hours passed and Dr. Cresten popped in through the fireplace. He performed a few tests on Harry. When he was finished, he smiled at Severus.
"Mr. Snape, the babies are fine. I'll be back every week to see how things are going. Please, feel free to contact me if anything changes. If he hasn't improved substantially by the end of July, I think that it would be a good idea to surgically remove the babies."
"The…surgery, would it hurt Harry? I mean, would it make him worse?"
"I couldn't say. But do not, under any circumstances, remove that necklace. Taking it off will surely kill him and the children."
Severus nodded and Dr. Cresten left through the fireplace. The Slytherin tipped up Harry's chin and placed soft kisses all over the Gryffindor's face.
"Come on, Harry. Open those big, beautiful eyes. Look at me, love."
Harry scrunched up his face and buried himself deeper in Severus' embrace. Severus gently stroked Harry's cheek.
"Open your eyes, sweetheart. Come on, please look at me."
The Gryffindor very slowly cracked his eyes open and hazily looked at the Potions Master.
"I'm right here, love. Do you need anything?"
"Why…why do I…feel so…so tired?"
"Remember how Professor Dumbledore said that elves could die of a broken heart?"
"Well, you heart's broken. From everything that happened today, it broke."
"Shh. You're still here because of me. Since I have your life-force, you can't die until I do."
The Gryffindor's hand went straight to his belly and he looked at Severus with a questioning look on his face.
"They're fine. There's a doctor from St. Mungo's, Cresten, that's going to come check on you and the babies once a week. You will get better. You will."
"Tomorrow. At 10am. There are no classes tomorrow, anyone who wants to can attend the ceremony."
"I want to go."
"Alright, but I think it would be best if you went in a wheelchair; you're very weak."
Harry nodded, yawning softly.
"Why don't you take a nap?"
"Will you stay?"
"Of course. Do you want me to let Hermione and Virginia know what's going on?"
Severus helped Harry lie down before sending a quick note to Madame Pince in the library. He knew that Hermione would be there helping Ginny study for her exams. They were in the Hospital Wing in a flash. Severus sat them down and made sure they knew to be quiet.
"I'm just going to come out with it and tell you, but you have to promise to be quiet."
Hermione and Ginny nodded and Severus continued.
"As I'm sure you know, there was a Death Eater attack last night and Lucius Malfoy died from his injuries. I'm also sure that you know people with elven blood can die from a broken heart. Well, when Lucius died Harry's heart broke."
"Is he dead Professor?"
"No, Virginia, but Harry is ill. He can't die because he gave me his life-force in October. I have worn it everyday since then, never taking it off. I have his life-force, so he cannot die until I do. Before you ask, Hermione, the babies are fine. In order to get better, Harry needs to be surrounded with people who love him at all times. Now, I can be here, and plan to, from my free period before dinner until after breakfast the next morning. It's during class times that I cannot be here."
"Well, since the N.E.W.T.s are done, Padma, Justin, and I don't have classes. We're just here waiting for Graduation, so we could be here during the day, and Ginny could come at meals and during her free period."
"That sounds like and excellent idea, Hermione. 10 points to Gryffindor. Does this schedule sound good to you, Virginia?"
"Sure. Do you think I could tell my mum? She's known about you and Harry since September and was really cool about it. She'd love to see Harry again, even if he's not doing so well. She could spend some time with Harry, too. And I think he'd like to see her. I mean, my mum's been like Harry's own mum ever since they met."
"Alright, you may owl your mother and ask her to come by. Harry's sleeping now, but if you'd like to come by tomorrow for breakfast, I'm sure that would be fine. Please let Justin and Padma know what's going on. Harry may sleep a lot, but don't leave him alone. Thank you for agreeing to help."
"He's practically our brother, Professor. What kind of friends would we be if we didn't do this for Harry? He'd do it for us in a heartbeat."
"You are quite right, Hermione."
"Um, Professor? How's Draco dealing with his father's passing?"
"To be perfectly honest, I don't know. Would you mind—"
"Go check on Draco, we'll stay here until you come back."
"Thank you, Virginia. I'll be back soon."
Hermione and Ginny went behind the curtain and sat with Harry. Severus walked quickly downstairs to the entrance to Slytherin Tower and up into Draco's room. Blaise was reading with her boyfriend curled up in her arms, sleeping. She smiled when she saw Severus enter.
"How's Harry?" she whispered.
"He's rather ill, but he will get better. How long has Draco been sleeping?"
"A couple hours. He cried himself to sleep a little before lunch."
"It's almost time for dinner, would you mind if I woke him?"
Blaise shook her head and put the book down. Severus sat on the bed, placing a hand on the blonde's shoulder and shaking him lightly.
"Draco, wake up."
Draco opened his eyes and rubbed them with his fists. One corner of his lips curled up slightly when he saw his godfather. The Potions Master pulled his godson into a tight hug.
"How are you doing, Dray?"
"I'm alright, I guess. The war's over; the Death Eaters were supposed to stop attacking when the war ended. Dad lived through the war and was still killed by those idiots. And just when he was really happy, too."
"I know…I know he was happy. And we're all going to miss him quite a lot. But remember that he was happy. The war was over; he didn't have to live a lie anymore. He got to see you walk again; he saw you fall in love. He fell in love. The only thing that would have made him happier would have been to see you have children, but that was far away in his mind. Your father lived a good life. Would you like me to order you some dinner?"
"Yes, please. Are you going to the funeral tomorrow?"
"I am, and so is Harry. But I should let you know that he probably won't look very well because when something very sad and tragic happens to an elf, they get ill. But you shouldn't worry. There are plenty of other people to worry about him."
"Yes, but right now I'm worried about you. Try not to be too sad, alright?"
Draco nodded and Severus put on his most believable smile. The truth was that he didn't feel like smiling; he wanted to curl up into a ball and cry until he completely evaporated. His best friend and husband died and his other husband, the pregnant one, should have been dead for all intents and purposes. The only thing keeping Harry alive right now was the fact that Severus wore his life-force. Severus ordered dinner for the two Slytherins and left to go back to the Hospital Wing, but somehow he ended up in the Headmaster's office.
"Ah, Severus, what can I do for you?"
"Nothing, really. I meant to go to be with Harry, but I accidentally ended up here. Sorry to bother you."
"You are never a bother, my dear boy. How are you coping with the day's most unfortunate events?"
"I'm as good as I can be. Harry woke up; he's determined to go to the funeral tomorrow, so I'll take him. I can't believe Luc's gone. I don't know why, but I always thought I'd be dead before him. What am I going to do if Harry doesn't get better, Albus? The Ministry will never let me keep the babies if he's not well. Gods, I love him so much. I don't know how I'll live if they're both gone."
Dumbledore gently hugged the Professor he considered a son.
"You'll be alright, Severus, because Harry will get better. I may not be a Seer, but wisdom comes with age and I know he will be fine. And you will be a wonderful father."
"Thank you, Albus. I'm going back to be with Harry now. Feel free to drop by anytime."
"Oh, I'll be around, I always am."
The Headmaster gave Severus a wise smile as the Potions Master went back to the Hospital Wing. He thanked Hermione and Ginny for sitting with Harry and ushered them off to dinner. The Slytherin curled up behind his husband and gently embraced him before falling asleep.
Severus woke up the next morning a little before 8am. He let his hands stray downward to lightly stroke his husband's stomach. Harry slowly woke and placed his hand on top of Severus'.
"How are you feeling, love?"
"Not so bad. I'm still tired, but I can't sleep any more. I feel like I've up all day and it's only morning."
"Do you feel better than you did yesterday?"
"Yeah, a little bit. Could we just stay here for a little longer?"
"Sure. Can you feel the babies moving around?"
"Sometimes I feel one kick me in the ribs. It doesn't hurt, but it feels funny. I think the other two play Quidditch with my bladder. You're sure they're alright?"
"Dr. Cresten said that they were fine now. He'll be back next week to check on you again."
"What if I'm not better by next week?"
"He said that if you're not better by the end of July, he'll probably want the babies to be born. But we'll cross that road if we come to it. Do you want to take a bath before we go to the funeral?"
Harry nodded and smiled. Severus helped him sit up and scoot to the edge of the bed.
"Think you can walk?"
"I want to try."
"Alright, but hold on to me."
Harry carefully stood, holding Severus' shoulders and pulling himself up. After a few moments, they made their way to the bathroom. Severus filled the tub with warm water, helped Harry get undressed, and got him in the tub.
"Join me, Sev."
"Get in here, you."
Severus quickly shed his clothes and slid into the bathtub behind Harry. They gently washed each other, luxuriating in the warm water and being together. After drying off, they got dressed in clean clothes before going back out to Harry's cot for breakfast. The house elves had sent up enough food for a half dozen people. They started eating and Draco and Blaise came in. Severus and Harry smiled at them, beckoning them to sit down and eat. Draco didn't eat much; he mostly sat quietly next to Severus.
"Are you doing alright, Dray?"
"I guess so. I mean, I really don't want to be doing this today, but I have to."
"At least have a little something to eat. Please, Draco."
"I didn't think you cared about me anymore, Harry."
"You're my friend. Just because I fell in love with your father doesn't mean that I don't want to be your friend. So, eat something. I'm already sick and there isn't much anyone can do about it, but you don't need to get sick too."
Draco looked at Harry for a moment, pondered what the Gryffindor said, and grabbed a small muffin. He ate it very slowly, but he did eat the whole thing. They finished the meal and it was time for them to go out to the front lawn for the ceremony. Blaise and Draco walked in front of Severus and Harry, making their way down to where the pyre was set up with the elder Malfoy's body on top. The four went up to the pyre and said their silent goodbyes. They then took their seats in the front row, watching silently as everyone else paid their respects before sitting down. To be perfectly honest, there weren't very many people there, only a few students and the faculty came, but it was touching nonetheless. Severus could see the tears sliding down his godson's cheeks as Dumbledore performed the ceremony in Latin. At the end of the funeral, the pyre ignited through the sheer power of the magic of the ceremony. Harry squeezed his husband's hand, letting the tears flow down his face. When it was over and the pyre was nothing more than smoldering ash, Arthur, Molly, and Ginny Weasley, along with Hermione came up to the front row, giving Harry hugs and shaking Severus' hand.
"Molly and I were planning on going to Hogsmeade to have lunch at the Three Broomsticks. Would the two of you like to join us?"
"Thank you very much, but I was planning on spending the day with Draco. Harry, you can go if you'd like."
"If you said yes, Severus, Harry, then I was going to go invite Draco as well."
"I'll ask him and be back in a moment."
Severus went over and spoke with Draco and Blaise for a few moments. The three Slytherin's returned; Draco shook Arthur's hand and was pulled into a hug by Molly.
"Thank you for coming."
"Your father was a good man. He did everything he could to protect you. Are you and your lady friend going to come with us?"
Draco blushed slightly and introduced Blaise to Mr. and Mrs. Weasley. The walked along slowly down the path to Hogsmeade. The 8 people entered the Three Broomsticks and sat down at a booth in the back. Everyone ordered butterbeers, even Harry, who had a non-alcoholic one. After ordering a tray of sandwiches and chips, the group talked about anything and everything that was inconsequential. It took everyone's mind off the funeral. It was quite pleasant, to say the least. They were heading back a few hours later when Draco brought up a touchier subject.
"Sev, what's going to happen to me now that Dad's gone?"
"Well, you'll be of age shortly after Graduation, so you'll be an adult. Until then, I will be your guardian. Once you're of age, all of the Malfoy possessions will belong to you."
"But what about the fact that you and Harry were bonded to him before he died?"
"Albus spoke to the Ministry last night. Harry and I have more than enough combined assets to care for the children, so we want everything to go to you. No arguments."
Draco nodded and they finally reached the castle. Harry, Severus, Draco, Blaise, Ginny and Hermione said their goodbyes to Arthur and Molly before going into the castle. Ginny and Hermione took Harry back to the Hospital Wing and they hung out for the rest of the day. Severus spent some quality time with Draco and Blaise.
The next week passed very quickly. Harry's health improved in leaps and bounds. He was almost back to normal; he was just a bit weak and tired very easily. Dr. Cresten decided that the Boy-Who-Lived was well enough to spend the rest of his pregnancy in his rooms, as long as he took it easy. Based on the size of the babies, the doctor thought that he wouldn't last much longer. He estimated that they'd be born by the end of June.
Harry was quite pregnant when it was time for Graduation the third Thursday in June. The ceremony, and the parties that followed, were a lot of fun for everyone. Severus was laying beside Harry that night when the Gryffindor started speaking with Kamali in Parseltongue.
"What does Kamali have to say, Harry?"
"He said that the babies will be coming soon, he thinks tomorrow or the next day."
"Well then, I think that we should get some rest."
"Me too…you do realize that we didn't discuss names for the babies yet."
"I know. I thought of a few names before Luc died and you got sick."
"Can I hear them?"
"Well, I thought that for a boy we could name him Lysander Hal and for a girl, I was thinking of Aislinn Bree. Have you thought of any names?"
"I like Aislinn. If we have a boy, I want to name him Luke. I didn't think of a middle name. For a girl, how about Shaina Danielle?"
"Luke…it's perfect. We'll think of a middle name eventually. Let's get some sleep."
Harry smiled, nodding, and curled up next to Severus, falling asleep. They woke up the next day and just spent the time together, making sure that everything was ready for the babies. Since Draco was now the owner of Malfoy Manor, the rooms he was living in were turned into the nursery. Three cribs, three small wardrobes, two rocking chairs, and two dressing tables were set up in what was the living room. Everything was white at the moment, but would be changed to different colors once the babies arrived. It was late in the day when Harry first started feeling contractions. Severus helped him move to the Hospital Wing and Madame Pomfrey called for Dr. Cresten. The medi-wizard arrived within a few seconds with three assistants, one for each baby.
"Now Harry, they're arriving rather early, so you may not hear them cry right away, but each of my assistants is very well prepared to take care of premature infants. You're still weak and I'm not quite sure how well you will handle being in labor. Once you start getting closer to delivering, we'll decide whether or not we should surgically deliver them."
Harry nodded and clutched Severus' robes as another contraction hit. The Gryffindor spent the next hours riding out the painful contractions, getting more and more tired with each passing moment. Finally, early on the morning of June 17th, Harry was nearly ready to deliver, but he was totally exhausted. Dr. Cresten checked him over before making a final decision.
"To be totally honest, Harry, I don't think you have the energy to push out all three babies. I would like to go ahead and surgically remove them."
"If you think that's best."
"I do. I think that it would be the best idea for the health of everyone."
"Go ahead then, just get them out!"
Dr. Cresten gave Harry a pain killing and numbing potion and draped a cloth over the Gryffindor's stomach. Using his wand almost as a Muggle doctor would use a scalpel, the medi-wizard carefully cut open the skin and Harry's pseudo-uterus. Because he was using magic, there was hardly any blood loss. He removed each infant, handing them over to the care of his assistants. Amazingly, all three babies were breathing and, although they were small, were doing fine. Dr. Cresten closed Harry's incision and checked on the babies. Harry fell asleep as soon as he heard them cry. The three assistants stood in front of the Slytherin, each holding one of his children. One of them stepped forward and handed him one of the babies.
"Professor Snape, meet your son."
"And your daughters," said one of the others.
"Two daughters and a son?"
Severus gazed down at the infant in his arms. Pale blue eyes looked up at him, blinking. The Potions Master lightly stroked his son's cheek and then brushed a finger over the dark patch of hair on the baby's head. Madame Pomfrey wheeled over three bassinettes, one with a blue blanket, one with a pink blanket, and one with a pale lavender blanket.
"What's his name, Severus?"
Severus looked up to see a brightly smiling Dumbledore standing in the doorway. The Headmaster took the baby from Severus' arms and wrapped him in the blue blanket.
"Luke…Luke Angelo Potter"
"Wonderful name. How about the girls?"
Severus cradled one of his daughters in his arms after wrapping her in the pink blanket. The baby girl yawned greatly, making a soft sighing noise before falling asleep.
"You are Shaina Danielle Potter."
He lay the sleeping infant in her bassinette and accepted the little lavender bundle from one of the assistants. She stared up at one of her fathers with very wide blue eyes.
"So that makes you Aislinn Bree Potter. I have a family, Albus."
"Yes you do, my boy. Many congratulations to you and Harry. Although I am curious as to why the children only have Harry's last name."
"I never liked the name Snape and all the grief it brought me. Even though it is supposed to be known that I was not really a Death Eater, I do not wish to bestow upon my children the unhappy legacy of my surname."
"I understand. It does seem that both Aislinn and Luke have joined their sister in sleeping quietly."
The Potions Master and the Headmaster laid the sleeping children in their bassinettes. Dumbledore pulled Severus into a warm embrace.
"Why don't you lie down and have a rest…we can talk more later."
"Thank you, Albus."
"Many congratulation, my boy."
Dumbledore left and Severus curled up behind his sleeping husband. The Gryffindor stirred a little, waking just enough to get more comfortable in Severus' arms.
"They're perfect, love. Luke, Shaina, and Aislinn."
"They're sleeping. Go back to sleep, my lion. You can see them in the morning."
The couple fell asleep in each other's arms, happy to be together with their children near. It was a wonderful end to a very trying time in their lives.
A/N: Alrightie, well I'm not sure if this is the end. It might be, but I think that there will be one more chapter before an epilogue. Please keep reviewing!