Author's Notes: Just so you kids know, I fully plan on completing I'm Sure You'll Contract My Disease and eventually, It Takes Two. They're just not holding my attention at the present time and I had to start on something new because I just really wanted to write something. And write I shall…
Summary: It's that unsatisfying moment mid-morning after a night of too much wine…the steadily increasing ache in your stomach, that knot in your throat, the throbbing of your head, the desire of immobility…but you know if you stay flat on your back, you'll choke on your own vomit. (but really, it's AU, set back when Severus was 23, Harry around the age of 5. The Dursleys are less than satisfactory, so Harry must be removed from their custody. He's put into the custody of the Hogwarts staff…blah blah blah. Same shit you've read so many times before, but unlike my other story, this will take much more time for adjustment, much more humor. Snape needs to find his place as the most fear professor, while Harry needs to find his place as a child. Most likely, the characters will still be very out-of-character because I have problems putting them in character, but we'll see.)
Disclaimer: Not Mine.
I'm Drunk on Lace (and Afraid of the Rain)
The roof of my mouth is on fire. It aches. It burns.
It tastes delicious. The slim crystal of my wine glass amuses me: the sparkling, clear liquid rising up, twinkling happily and reflecting in my eyes. It's too early for a headache, too late for sobriety. Best of all, it's too much to think, too little to pass out. If only life constantly consisted of this dim neutrality, thoughtless and sleepy – with this burning sweetness eternally on the tip of my tongue.
I'm slothful, lying on my side, one arm hanging lazily over the side of the sofa. No one expects this of me and few have seen it. Sometimes I wish I could see it. I wish that my sober self could crawl out of my drunken body and watch me be this utterly pathetic.
Who ever heard of getting drunk alone anyway? It's a skill of alcoholics: to take a whole bottle to your lips and chug, to feel that desire charge down your throat and to your stomach, blackening your liver, lightening your head. And oh dear Merlin, where in your name has my sight gone? The room is blotching black, my lids are slowly slipping over my bloodshot eyes. You don't need to tell me I should just lay here, but I'm irrational and part of me yearns for my soft, sweet bed – to sleep properly, undisturbed.
I got to my feet, shaky as they are, and took a step.
I fall into the wall, clinging to a doorframe to keep myself up.
You see, when I slur a series of swears to myself that means I've appropriately given up on my goal. Yes…that just about does it for me for tonight.
I allowed myself to fall.
Waking up after a night of drinking has an unpleasant take on all of the senses: all five of them are an individual door to the head. The head, naïve and overly trusting, opens each door to allow pain to seep in. This is why I hate my head. This is why I don't make sense when I'm hung over.
I can smell, feel, and taste my own vomit. This is disgusting in itself, as I am lying in a pool of it. The mere event of this causes me to produce more, which takes it's toll on my mouth, which is burning from the acids of my stomach and the regurgitated alcohol. My cat, delightfully named Snowball (for she is solid black and it's amazingly contradictory to name something so dark after something so pure and white), has taken it upon herself to scratch at my bedroom door. The sound seems to be enhanced due to my sensitive state and the ache in my head turns to a most horrendous throb.
I foolishly left the light on before blacking out, which I would have kicked myself for if I had the energy. For when I opened my eyes, I was greeted with a blinding flash that I could have easily mistaken for the sun. More throbbing ensued.
Good thing it's Sunday. Otherwise I'd have classes to teach right now.
Snowball had something big in her mouth, and she was slowly dragging it towards me.
"Not now, Snowball," I groaned, banging my head into the vomit covered floor. Then, realizing how this act was most unsanitary, I rolled to a non-vomited-covered area of the floor. Snowball persisted, her yellow eyes gleaming. She clawed my robes, dragging her newly found object right underneath my heavy head. I glanced at it. It had numbers and days of the week.
"A calendar?" I asked her. She hissed, placing her paw on a specific square. It was a Monday. "Bloody Hell, you're joking…"
That's when I noticed that Snowball wasn't black. It was also when I realized that Snowball definitely did not have the intelligence to tell me which day of the week it was.
"Professor McGonagall!" I squealed, moving to cover myself, only to realize that I had passed out in my robes. "Oh…"
She leapt into human form, taking the stiff, stern role of my former transfiguration teacher and recently new colleague. She wrinkled her nose in disgust, crossed her arms, and glared down at me. I shuddered.
"How old are you, Severus?" she demanded.
Oh no, not this…anything but the, "you're old enough to know better than to get drunk when you have work in the morning" lecture. Not that I had ever received one of these before. In fact, this would be a first. Maybe it would be interesting?
"23, Professor," I replied.
"Firstly 23 is old enough to know that I am no longer your professor, but your colleague," she snapped, causing my head to throb even more painfully than before.
"Yes, Minerva," I corrected myself.
"Secondly, 23 is old enough to know that you should not waste yourself away the night before you have work," she continued.
"Yes, Minerva," I nodded my head subserviently.
"Thirdly, 23 is old enough to know that you should not drink at all, Severus. It's a most stupid thing to do, foolish and vile. I expected much better of you. You must set a decent example for the students. You cannot," she looked at me venomously, "under any circumstances rampage around the school reeking of alcohol and vomit." She cast a cleaning spell on my floor, and then rounded on me again. "Look what it's done to you, child. You're not even yourself right now. You're being much too respectful." I shrugged. "Now go shower and get dressed. The headmaster wishes to have a word with you about absences." She gave me another reprimanding glare before leaving.
I had nothing to do but obey. I gulped down a vile of headache potion, cleaned myself to entirety, and robed. Professor Dumbledore was a calm, loving, caring headmaster. He would not kill me…this time.
The students looked at me curiously as I walked past them. I had only begun teaching a month ago, and it was rather difficult for me to sink back into the school atmosphere. I hated Hogwarts, really I did. I hated the students, teachers, ghosts, portraits, classrooms, staircases…everything. I hated them all. Yet, there was some sort of solace in the familiarity. And this time around, I had authority. That was something I was missing as a child: authority. Children were afraid of authority.
"Hey, Professor Snape," a Ravenclaw girl smiled cheerfully at me. "Are you okay? We were wondering where you were…"
But bloody hell, I was the youngest teacher at the school and being the youngest, it's always hard to make people fear you.
"Yes, I'm fine," I replied stiffly. "Shouldn't you be in a class…?" I hadn't the faintest what her name was.
"Edith," she supplied. "And no, Professor, classes are over for the day. It's almost suppertime." She looked confused at my lack of knowledge. "Where were you?"
WHY DID THEY NOT FEAR ME?
"I was ill," I grunted. "Have a nice supper." My stomach reeled at the thought of food.
"Lemon drops are delicious," I sighed out the password(s).
Professor Dumble-er…Albus was sitting at his desk expectantly, his hands clasped before him. The setting sun reflected in his half-moon spectacles. His mouth was twisted slightly into a smile, but at my entrance, his expression grew serious. That's when I knew that I was going to break.
"Severus-" he began.
"I'm sorry, it'll never happen again. I'll be the most brilliant teacher you've ever had, always on time and ready to work. I just lost track of the day, Professor. I'm so very sorry."
Fuck, Minerva was right. Drinking was foolish and personality altering.
Dumbledore gave me an odd look, raising his left eyebrow; he then indicated his head towards the sofa next to me.
On said sofa, was a very small child of about four, sporting huge circular glasses, which were broken between the lenses and untidy baggy clothing. He also had messy raven hair, which stuck up in all directions…
James Potter. James Potter was alive again, in the form of a small child. Merlin save us all!
My distress must have been evident, for Dumbledore cleared his throat, causing me to snap my head up.
"Severus, this is Harry Potter," he said, smiling at the boy. "We had to remove him from the care of his relatives due to mistreatment."
"What? Was his crown not shiny enough?" I grumbled, seething at the way the headmaster looked at the boy: as if he were a great mound of gold, twinkling beautifully in the sunlight.
"Severus…" His tone was stern, so I straightened and feigned innocence. "I want you to look at Harry." I looked at the boy.
"Kneel down and look him in the eyes," he ordered. I reluctantly obeyed, kneeling before the legendary Harry Potter. I stared. He stared back. His eyes were big and green, encased in large purple bruises and as I moved to brush away the hair that hid the scar, he cried out and backed away.
"So they beat him," I deadpanned…and though I felt more than a little sympathy, I turned to the headmaster and asked, "What do I care?"
Dumbledore cast a disapproving glance in my direction, before addressing Harry. "Harry, this is Severus. He may look a little frightening, but he'd never hurt you."
I bit the side of my mouth to keep from shouting it outrage.
"Shouldn't you introduce me as Professor Snape?" I asked.
"Harry needs to feel comfortable. Addressing you formally would only make him less comfortable in his new home."
"New home?" I asked.
"Hogwarts," the old man smiled, gesturing smoothly with his hands to the area encompassing him. "Harry is now in sole custody of Hogwarts and all of its staff. That includes you, Severus."
My stomach lurched.
"I think I'm going to be sick."
Author's Notes: Did you like? Would you like more? Again, I promise to continue the others, I just couldn't keep my attention on them. And I know this was short, but it was a start. I have a few original ideas for this exceedingly unoriginal plot, but you know…what can you do? I hope you enjoyed, I hope you will read, and I hope you will review. If you don't review, I probably won't continue, though I might…because it's kind of funny. I laughed to myself, as insane as that is. Anyway, hope you liked. 3