AN: This story is a continuation of all those fanfics in which Harry and Severus are forced together by a "Soul Mate" potion (or spell), usually masterminded by Albus Dumbledore. I've never written such a fic myself, but after having read more than my share, this plot bunny just wouldn't let me be. I've chosen to remain true to the variety of fics I'd read which sported this particular plot so Harry is an Auror, Sev is no longer teaching at Hogwarts, and the rest you will find out in due time…
Warning: HP/SS Slash!He Who Knows Best
The morning post arrived just as Ariel Snape-Potter finished eating her breakfast. Her dad, Harry, had prepared it, meaning it consisted of no more than a couple of slices of toast, marmalade and orange juice. Ariel preferred days when her father, Severus, was in charge of meals, since that ensured more variety and flavor, though she'd never hurt her dad's feelings by saying so.
Three animals swooped noisily onto the round kitchen table, dropping off envelopes in random sizes. Ariel examined the unfamiliar barn owl suspiciously, recognizing the other two as the family messengers – Hedwig, her dad's snowy owl, and Belthazar, her father's black raven.
The barn owl delivered a cream colored envelope sporting the impressive burgundy colored Hogwarts seal. Ariel recognized the Hogwarts seal from her older brother's school letters she was accustomed to seeing each summer. She was anxiously awaiting her own acceptance letter, which was due to arrive the following summer. This was the thing Ariel had been looking forward to for as long as she could remember. Judging from dad and father's stories, Hogwarts simply had to be the most magical, adventurous, exhilarating place on earth.
So naturally seeing the official Hogwarts letter caused the energetic girl quite a bit of excitement, which she imparted on to her dad, rather loudly.
"DAD!!!" the young witch yelled at the top of her lungs, to assure Harry would hear her from the master bedroom, where he was, no doubt, busy getting dressed for work.
A half a minute later, having received no reply, the girl roared again
Within seconds the 33 year-old wizard appeared on the scene, wand grasped firmly in his right hand, a worried expression plastered on his handsome face. His intense gaze swept across the room a few times in search of the peril, which had caused his daughter's hysterical reaction. Upon finding none, he turned to the girl and without trying to hide his annoyance, reproached his daughter:
"What have we told you about scaring us like that, Ariel?"
The black haired, green-eyed witch looked a tad bit contrite as she explained:
"Sorry dad, I didn't mean to frighten you. Nothing's wrong, I just thought you'd like to know you and father got a letter from Hogwarts."
Upon Hearing this, the wizard's expression relaxed and switched to curiosity, as he accepted the letter from his daughter's sticky hands.
"Good on you for getting marmalade all over it Ariel" he said in mock-exasperation as he opened the envelope and began to read its content.
Dear Alumni, Faculty and Friends,
It is with great pride that I extend a cordial invitation for all of you to join us for your 15th bonding anniversary. We will convene at the Great Hall of Hogwarts on Saturday, April 10th for a festive dinner followed by a ball in honor of your vows.
It is prudent that all of you accept this invitation, for I promise it will prove to be an enlightening experience for everyone.
Kindly RSVP by owl no later than Thursday, April 8th.
Albus DumbledoreHeadmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
This odd invitation only served to mount Harry's interest and curiosity. What was Albus on about? Enlightening? Why celebrate their 15th anniversary? After all, he'd barely even congratulated them on their 10th. Something was fishy here and Harry couldn't wait to run it by Severus and see if his husband could figure out what was behind the puzzling ball.
Ariel was tugging at Harry's sleeve attempting to lower the parchment so that she too could read it. She then decided whining to her 'softie' dad might prove more productive.
"What is it, dad? What's it say?"
Harry turned to face his daughter, whose eyes were sparkling with mischief as usual, and explained that they would be taking a family trip to Hogwarts this weekend.
Hearing this the young girl squealed in excitement and danced around the room while chanting: "We're going to Hogwarts! We're going to Hogwarts!"
Harry rolled his eyes at his daughter's excessive playfulness, swatted her backside and told her to hurry up and get her books or they'd both be late.
Ariel's excitement abated and the pair flooed from their living room fireplace to Ariel's local wizarding elementary school, where Harry left his daughter and continued onto his office at the Ministry.
* * * * *
That evening Harry returned late after having been out on a sting operation during most of the day. He entered the house and strode directly into the kitchen, since he'd heard his husband and daughter's voices from there.
Ariel spotted her dad as soon as he framed the doorway and favored him with her bright smile "Hey dad!"
Severus, who was serving his daughter some dinner (beef strogonoff with rice) turned dramatically as Harry neared him and they shared a chaste kiss on the lips. "Good Evening, Harry" Severus said in his honey-dripping voice.
Harry sat in his usual place and served himself some of the wonderful smelling food his husband had prepared, after winking cheerfully at his playful daughter.
The three enjoyed a pleasant conversation throughout the meal, sharing events from the day that had passed and Harry and Ariel competed on who could snort more bubbles in their milk. Severus rolled his eyes disgustingly at this game, but since he was used to it by now, said nothing further.
A while later, after having tucked their daughter in, the two wizards were sprawled comfortably on their living room couch, with Harry's head resting lazily on Sev's lap and Sev twirling a strand of Harry's dark long hair.
"Mmm, Sev, I almost forgot, we received an invitation to a 15th wedding anniversary from Hogwarts. Seems like Albus is orchestrating some huge production of it, inviting all the happy couples."
Severus grunted. "The old fool" he added, but there was no spite in his tone. "The fact that he chooses to publicize it is ludicrous, if you ask me.
Things happened the way they did because of the circumstances. One would think Albus would allow us the peace and quiet to deal with it in our own way after that."
Harry sprung up immediately at hearing this. He faced Sev, wearing an expression that conveyed hurt and concern:
"What is that supposed to mean, Sev? Do you feel the need to hide it? After all these years?"
Severus sighed, obviously perturbed by Harry's question.
"Stop sulking, Harry. You know perfectly well that I've never hidden the fact that we bonded through the 'Animus Ligare Act* of 2004'. Nevertheless, I see no reason to hold public anniversary commemorations for the event."
Seeing his husband's still tense and offended expression, the older wizard softened and added: "Since I'd much rather celebrate it in private".
Saying this, Sev pulled Harry up, wrapped his arm around him and led him to their bedroom.TBC
* 'Animus Ligare' loosely translates from Latin to "Soul Bind"
Well, I hope I've managed to pique your interest! Next chapter the Snape-Potters visit Hogwarts.
Please tell me if you'd like me to continue or not, since I'm awfully busy working on my story "Starting Over" as well, but this plot bunny just wouldn't go away!