"And So the Duo Meets ..."

A Snips and Spirals Fanfic
Text by Lady Tesser
Illustrations by Atana
(See her bio page for the URL)


DISCLAIMER: You should know the drill by now.
And Hogwarts IS in Scotland. Says so at the Lexicon.

She was the youngest of all her siblings and the last name to be called for the Sorting Ceremony.

Professor Minerva McGonagall's voice echoed throughout the Great Hall as she called: "Britomartis Vox."

Martis, the only student left, ascended the dais and turned as she hitched herself up on the tall stool. The four rows of tables denoting the four houses stretched out before her, the students silent in respect as their pointed caps bobbed here and there, the owners craning their necks to see the girls with knee-length ash blonde hair and black sunglasses stare back at them with an undecipherable sunglass reflection.

Lightning flashed in the Great Hall, the rain pouring down over the floating candles, stopping before the candles were burnt out.

The Sorting Hat was placed on her head. It hummed to itself for a few seconds then said, "Yes, a very lonely life, especially for a Vox. Twelve siblings of yours I have been put on and none have the dark loneliness you do ... nor do they have as much imagination or fierce determination ... Poor child, where to put ye ... SLYTHERIN!"

Martis blinked in incomprehension for a moment, wondering how she could not be placed in Ravenclaw like the rest of her siblings. It had been a joke that the Vox clan would take over Ravenclaw, especially if they were going to be as prolific breeders as the Matriarch and her husband.

Martis snapped back and slowly made her way toward the Slytherin table ... a table full of leers, frowns, and noses in the air.

She claimed a space between an older girl with extremely blonde long hair and a boy with longish greasy black hair and a large nose.

Martis looked down at the table, not even fazed when the food appeared instantaneously before her. She was too deep in thought to think of magic or Hogwarts or anything for that matter.

"Excuse me," the girl next to her spoke up. "Yes; Britomartis Vox, correct?"

"Yes," she answered, coming back to the situation at hand and automatically replying with, "Just call me Martis."

The girl smiled, her porcelain white skin smooth and perfect, not even dimpling. "I'm Narcissa Black, Fourth Year. This is my younger sister Bellatrix, Second Year." She indicated a stunning twin with ebony black hair who was busy chatting with one of the other Slytherin boys. "We're from the Black family, as you may know."

Martis, not inclined to small talk, least of all about familial lineages, commented, "I'm sure that means something to somebody, but it means nothing to me. Is there something special about being from a family by that name?"

"Of course," Narcissa answered, one of her blue eyes twitching. "We are one of THE Pureblood wizard families. Being Pureblood means you are automatically special." She leaned close. "And since you are of both the Atola and Vox family lines of Greece - "

"Crete," Martis corrected her.

"- Then you are automatically One of Us."

"How do you know about my family?"

Narcissa curled up a nostril with a subtle sneer. "Only Purebloods make it into Slytherin, and your older siblings are notorious for not being here." The sneer changed into a hungry smile. "Of course, you need to make the right friends while being part of the illustrious House of Slytherin. I can offer to show you the ropes, take you under my tutelage to become one of the Ladies of Slytherin."

"Ladies of Slytherin?" Martis repeated. "Is there such a thing?"

"An unofficial little group," Narcissa stated. "Pureblood ladies intent on keeping the bloodlines pure and keeping up appearances. The boys are too rowdy at this age to care, so it's up to us to show the refined aspects of our House."

The boy on Martis' right suddenly broke in with, "Yes, Miss Black, and how did your reckless cousin Sirius Black end up in Gryffindor? Aspirations have been cast upon his so-called parentage."

"Shut your hole, Snape!" Narcissa snarled.

Martis wanted to crawl under the table as the boy answered, "Can't quite shake the shame of that, can you? Considering what a contemptible bore he is with his drooling Gryffie friends who can't tell the difference between Kneazles and cats -"

"Just shut up!" the blonde teenager snapped. "You're not funny, you greasy worm."

"Better than an inbred one," he replied.

Martis wanted to knock their heads together but refrained. Instead, she scooped up a large spoonful of boiled shredded cabbage and made sure to drown it in pepper.

As she took a bite, the boy said, "And another thing, Narcissa, you look like a dysenteric weasel with a terminal case of hemorrhoids."

Martis' head swung around to look at the teenage girl, noted the resemblance, and laughed hysterically, nearly choking on her cabbage.

Narcissa sneered, turning away from that part of the table; Martis noted the boy next to her smirked at his well-handed insult behind his black hair and went back to picking at his sausages and mash.

Martis made sure to remember him. Something told her he was going to be a good person to know.

* * *

The Slytherin common room was the most depressing room she had ever seen in her entire life. It was a dungeon in a former lifetime, located under the castle and extending under the lake. Large windows were open to show the darkness of the water, the glass reflecting back the green lamps of the room. True, elegant with leather couches and bloody tapestries, but Martis felt her heart sink as she realized she would never see the sun while in this House.

"Good evening," a woman with puffy gray hair and very large round glasses said. "I am your House Mother Rowena Price. All the girls will be in the Slytherin Tower dorms, left side. If you have any problems, you bring them to me." She turned to one of the doorways, her large indigo skirts swinging around her calves which were covered with green and white striped stockings and lead down to black shoes with large buckles. "First Years, follow me for orientation ..."

Martis parted from the group and located a clay jar with spirals painted all over them. Opening the jar, she peeked in and whispered, "Medusa? Come on, we're here."

She placed her hand inside the jar and a medium-sized python slithered up her arm, winding across her small shoulders, and finally draped itself around the girl's neck.

She looked up to see a teenage boy with long blonde hair stalk into the room, looking around in an agitated manner. His nose stuck up too high in the air in Martis' opinion, but she said nothing as he looked around.

"You," he snapped at her.

She looked up, her sunglasses reflecting his image back to him. "What?"

"Have you seen a tall, skinny Third Year boy with greasy hair and a hooked nose?"

Martis immediately thought of the boy who sat next to her and insulted Narcissa Black. This teenager's blondeness and sneer reminded her very much of Narcissa, but he could not have been the Sirius Black mentioned before because this teenager wore the Slytherin house crest on his robe and not the Gryffindor.

"Not recently."

He surveyed her, raising a fine eyebrow. "Lucius Malfoy, Fourth Year. And you are ...?"

"Britomartis Vox, First Year. Call me Martis."

He offered a hand to her, barely touching hers in a handshake. "A pleasure, Miss Vox. I am sure Miss Narcissa Black will introduce you to the Ladies of Slytherin soon enough."

Martis pulled her hand away; his hand felt like ice, and she never liked people with cold hands. "I doubt I'll have any interest in social climbing groups who wish to preserve a tiny pool of blood."

Lucius' brows lowered over his blue eyes. One arm delicately slipped around her shoulders not occupied by snake. "Miss Vox, being Pureblood is more than preserving names and blood - it is a state of mind and acknowledgement of our special place on Earth."

"What do Purebloods do, then?"

"Maintain the purity of magic by blood." He looked down at her, a slight frown. "Of course, you have no need to worry for your own blood - the Atola and Vox lines are rather well-known. Now it is simply your choice to marry into another Pureblood line when you are older." The frown switched to a smirk. "When you're ready for an alliance, there would be a place for you in that respect. The Lestranges have two lads in the family, I'm sure one of them would do. Or perhaps Avery or Rosier. Then there is also Snape, poor soul who can't keep his mouth shut." He released her and bowed. "Speaking of which, I must find him. Good evening, Miss Vox, we'll meet again."

He left the room and Martis made a gruesome face at his back. "Uppity inbred snot - of course we'll meet again, you Nazi-moron, we're in the same house!"

She stroked Medusa and wandered off to find the girls' dorms.

* * *

Martis' first class - charms - made her really wonder if she needed a wand at all.

"Remember, students," Professor Flitwick proclaimed. "Swish and flick! Practice now."

The students around her practiced the arm and wrist movements while she sat quietly with her wand still before her.

"Miss Vox," the small professor said. "Please participate."

"I refuse to 'swish and flick' on general principal, sir," she answered.

The other First Years around her giggled as the professor rubbed his forehead. "Miss Vox, could you at least try the Wingardiam Leviosa?"

Martis stared at her feather on her desk, and then emitted a soft, windy note from her mouth. The feather floated gently upward, as if carried by a breeze.

Everyone stared at it, then she tapered off the note and the feather floated back down to her desk before her.

Professor Flit wick's mouth opened and closed a few times, then finally said, "Students, back to your lessons. Miss Vox, I would like to speak with you after class."

She nodded and picked up her wand to practice her swishing and flicking in the meantime.

* * *

Professor Flitwick's office was small and cozy, the ceiling just an inch above Martis' head. A merry fire blazed in the fireplace where a large tea kettle was boiling. The chairs were small, but cushy, decorated in bright colors and patterns, while the floor was covered with gaily-patterned rugs and the windows had golden drapes pulled aside for the sunlight to come in.

Professor Flitwick himself was making tea on a small tea trolley (fitted for his size); he lifted the kettle from the fire and poured the water into the teapot, then covered the pot to allow the water to soak up the tea leaves.

"Miss Vox, is it a practical joke in your family to do that to me every time one of you starts my class?" he asked.

Martis, half-drowning in the soul-sucking comfy chair, shook her head. "I never knew my siblings did that, sir. I did it on my own."

He smiled at her, offering her a plate of sweets; she accepted a brandy- cream lace. "I understand that you must be upset for not making it into Ravenclaw. I approached the Headmaster about it this morning, in fact, because I fully expected to have you in my House. Your older siblings have been some of my best students and are the pride of the House, and I was hoping you would join us."

"I thought I was, too." She shrugged. "And I got stuck in the Inbred Snake Hall of Fame."

Flitwick giggled, blushing. "Professor Penderdandis is a fine House Master." He lifted the teapot lid and began spooning in sugar. "As I was saying, I spoke with Headmaster Dumbledore about it, and he said he cannot revoke the Sorting Hat's decision to place you in Slytherin."

"Thank-you, Professor Flitwick," Martis stated. "I thought you would try, considering my family's history in your House."

"Of course, Miss Vox," he replied, pouring a teacup for her and handing it to her. He poured his own and added more sugar and some cream. "However, your ... comments in class today had me wondering if you are going to be like this for the rest of the year."

"No, sorry about that, sir. It just irritates me to learn that sort of thing all over again when I mastered it at age four, only without a wand."

"Well, dear, this is only a different way of doing the same magics, so think of it as a refresher course." He sipped his tea. "Needs a little more sugar."

Martis gulped down a mouthful, and then choked. Too MUCH sugar, even for an eleven-year-old.

* * *

After class was spent in the Slytherin common room, Martis looking for her snake Medusa.

Crawling around on the floor, she pushed tables and couches aside as she looked, softly hissing.

"Didn't know you could speak Parsel-tongue," a boy's voice commented.

Martis raised her head, pushing her sunglasses back up on her nose. A boy with short, shaggy black hair was sitting on a chair she had pushed aside. "What's Parsel-tongue?"

"The Snake Language. Our House Founder spoke Parsel-tongue, so that's why our house beast is the snake." He offered his hand. "Evan Ryper, Fifth Year, Prefect."

She shook his hand. "Britomartis Vox, First Year; call me Martis. No, don't speak it. I'm just looking for my snake - have you seen a light- colored python slithering around here, answering to the name 'Medusa'?"

"Afraid not," he replied. He pulled a glass bottle filled with bright green liquid and studied it in the dim light of the room. "I'll be sure to tell you if I do."

"You don't seem to be scared of snakes like some of the others here." She began looking under a coffee table.

"Why should we be?" he asked. "We're all 'little snakes' in this place; and even if we're called a 'snake pit', that means we stick together like glue."

"Ah, another Pureblood harper."

"No," Evan snapped. "I don't believe in this Pureblood nonsense like Malfoy and the Blacks. I'm a little too realistic in that respect." He pulled out another bottle, this one with soothing lavender liquid in it. "I overhead him talking to you last night, and I think you hit it right. It's pointless, really, to breed oneself into extinction. Anyway, being a Slytherin has nothing to do with blood, it has to do with being ambitious, sharp of mind, and willing to be fierce when it comes down to the wire. Some more than others."

"I can see that," she agreed, her hand enclosing over a filmy substance. She pulled it up. "Oh, good, she's not lost, she's just shedding. I was wondering when that would start."

"You said her name was 'Medusa'?" he asked.


"We'll keep a look out for her." He put the glass bottles back in his robe. "Meanwhile, why don't you go out and explore the grounds? The moors are quite pretty in the afternoons."

Martis stood up, brushing her knee-length hair back over her shoulders. "I think I will; Medusa will be all right." She stared at him, and then asked, "Do Slytherins really stick together?"

"Right down to it, absolutely. Salazar Slytherin may have been a loner, but we of the Slytherin House know we can cause more trouble together." He grinned.

Martis smiled as well. "Conspiracies always need numbers."

* * *

Martis picked her way through the mud, pulling her green and silver scarf closer around her throat.

Mid-Scotland was much colder in the autumn than Crete was in the dead middle of winter. It was surprising the school was even built with all this coldness.

And it would get COLDER.

This had to be Avernus. No wonder Azkaban was near the Arctic Circle.

The cries of pain caught her attention. She looked around, trying to locate the yells, then darted off across the muddy grass toward a hilly area. Carefully climbing up the hill, she came upon the sight of a handsome boy with longish dark hair riding a broom and dragging another boy by the hair through the mud.

Judging by his manner and robe, she concluded this must be Gryffindor's Sirius Black ... amazing; he looked just like a male version of Bellatrix Black.

"You're not talkin' bad about my family, are you, slimy snake?" the boy on the broom snarled. "Because if you are, I'm going to have to do something worse than drag you through the mud." He cackled. "Like it, Snivellus? You're lower than mud, Snivelly!"

Martis recognized the boy being dragged through the mud - he was the one who sat next to her during dinner the night before, the one who insulted Narcissa Black's family and appearance.

Martis felt anger boil up; the Slytherin boy was helpless, not allowed to defend himself, and she got the feeling that this sort of thing had been going on between them before she arrived.

"What are you doing to a Slytherin, Gryffie?!" she yelled across the landscape.

Sirius Black released the Slytherin in surprise, twirling around on his broom to see Martis standing on top of the hill; the tormented boy landed face first in the mud. He pulled his head up, coughing mud and wiping it from his eyes.

"Oh, a little girlie trying to rescue the greasy, miserable git!" Black crowed in glee. "You don't know that even his own House hates him, do ya' little girlie?"

Martis steeled herself as he zipped toward her, bent low over his broom and leering as he plowed through the air toward her. She pirouetted out of his way as she felt the wind rushing at her, shoving her right fist up toward his face and making contact with his jaw.

He lost control of the broom and the hit caused him to somersault backwards down the hill, covering him in mud along the way. A stream of obscenities spilled from his mouth as he staggered up and attempted to locate his wand in his robe.

He pulled it out just as Martis sprinted down at him and kicked it out of his hand, sending it flying into a patch of mud.

"If you're going to fight a girl, then at least be man enough to use your fists!" Martis roared as she fell into ancient boxer stance.

Black sneered. "Delighted, girlie." He balled his right fist and aimed right at her mouth - and was surprised when she clutched his fist and flung him over her shoulder, making him airborne.

His face landed in the mud, followed by his chest then knees, his backend accordioned in the air and his arm twisted back. Martis slammed his fist into the back of his head, finishing his punch for him.

"Shame on you, you bully! Picking on girls and Slytherins! Don't you have a keeper?"

Black turned over, groaning in pain, as he wiped mud from his face. "Great going, Snivellus," he addressed the other boy in the mud. "You've got a little girl to fight your fights for you. Congratulations, you wad of virus-snot. Nobody'll come to the wedding."

The Slytherin boy ran off as Martis began calling Sirius Black names that would make her older sisters wash her mouth out.

* * *

Dinner was interesting that evening. Martis noted as Sirius Black sat down with a group of Gryffindor boys they began shooting her dirty looks. It did not help that Sirius still had some mud behind his ears.

Narcissa Black wrinkled her nose up at Martis. "Britomartis Vox, I understand that you attacked my cousin this afternoon."

"Attacked?" Martis repeated as she shoved a forkful of chicken and ham pie in her mouth. She chewed and swallowed before adding, "And what was I supposed to do when I found him tormenting a fellow Slytherin?"

"Oh, whom?"

"The boy who called you a dysenteric weasel with hemorrhoids."

Narcissa's nose wrinkled even more. "Snips needs to learn to respect the Blacks, not make us enemies. He's a greasy toad that needs to be put in his place every so often; you'll learn that it's the way to do things. Since you did not know, you're excused from expulsion by the Ladies of Slytherin."

Martis slammed her fork down, standing up over the blonde girl. "Miss Black," she said politely. "If this is the type of attitude cultivated by these so-called 'Ladies', then I want no part of your little cult of vanity- eaters. If you ever have the chance, read about a Muggle group called 'Nazis' - they had similar ideas to you Purebloods, and they were the most reviled group in Muggle history, enough so that after they were defeated in a major world war, they became the butt of bad jokes and grade-B pulp villains." She hardened her mouth. "Now, if you'll excuse me, you've made me lose my appetite."

Martis left the Great Hall, wanting to slam the large doors behind her enough to make the candles fall on the head of every snooty Pureblood in the room.

The halls were quiet during dinner, she absently noted as she wandered toward the library. The torches crackled quietly to themselves around her, distorting shadows against the stone walls.

"Well, what have we here?" a smarmy voice crooned. "A little snake not at dinner? There's things we do to snakes that wander out of the Great Hall -"

"Off!" a hoarse voice hissed.

The voice replied back, "Aw, Baron, just let me, please! I haven't bothered a Slytherin in a long time and they're so fun to poke and prod."

"Not this one, Peeves! Now go off and stick donuts in your ears or something."

"Wet blanket goit," the smarmy voice muttered.

An elegant figure covered in bloodstains floated down the hall from a corridor, pausing before Martis and bowing formally. "Miss Vox -"

"You're the Bloody Baron," she stated. "I heard about you - the Slytherin House ghost. I also heard you aren't known to talk."

"Rubbish," he answered, offering his arm down to her. "I just have nothing to say. However, I know of your protection of a fellow Slytherin this afternoon and I felt I should tell you where he is."

"Beg pardon?" she asked.

He sighed. "Shall I spell it out for you? The boy you protected is in the library ... and I think he needs a little talking to."

"All right," she replied. "I'll go do that. I did wonder why he wasn't at dinner."

The Bloody Baron floated down the hall, his cloak fluttering around his figure.

Martis entered the library and looked around, listening for a sound to denote a human was in the vicinity ... someone sniffed, and she walked toward her right, her school-issue Mary Janes clacking against the polished floor.

Madame Pince appeared down one of the shelf rows, looking up at her long enough to send a warning scowl across the bow, and then went back to shelving. Martis continued down the row, looking for anything resembling the boy she had saved earlier.

A wall came up, so she slipped down an aisle, finding another walkway.

She found him curled up in a corner, sitting on a window seat with his knees drawn up to his chin and his face and hair caked with dried mud. His robe and tie were piled on the floor, exposing his too-short uniform trousers, shirt, and sweater.

He was all disproportioned with long skinny legs and arms capped off with very large hands and feet, made complete with his large hooked nose taking over his thin face. He reminded her of a half-grown puppy, all large feet and head, and this made him both adorable and sad at the same time.

She gently approached him, giving him a chance to see her approach. He looked up, his eyes red with crying and tears streaking clear paths through the mud on his face.

Martis' heart broke, and she did the only thing she knew - she sat next to him and drew her arms around him, saying, "Poor dear."

He pulled away, but she clung to him, hugging him tightly against her small chest. He fought but she kept him snugly enclosed in her strong arms, not allowing him to keep his pain to himself.

At last he gave up and sobbed into her sweater, his arms rounding her waist and squeezing her as he released the pain and anger and humiliation he had felt that afternoon in his embrace and his tears.

Martis stroked his hair, rubbed his back, comforting him with a soft Minoan song one of her sisters would sing to her when she was upset.

His sobs finally subsided, leaving him sniffing for several minutes as she continued holding him. At last, he looked up at her; Martis was amazed at how liquid black his eyes were ... and how much pain and horror filled them as well.

"I'm Britomartis Vox, First-Year," she stated. "Call me Martis."

He gazed up at her, and then whispered, "Severus Snape, Third-Year."

She smiled warmly at him. "And we're Slytherins. Listen, any time that creep gets near you, I'll knock him on his nasty butt. Slytherins stick together, Severus."

He lowered his eyes. "I wish it were true."

"Well, it'll be true for us. You need a friend and so do I. Want to be friends?"

He looked up at her again, his chin quivering. "Why do you want to be friends with me?"

"Cause anybody that can tell a snooty girl she's being a snotty bitch is fine in my book." he informed him. She smiled cutely. "Besides, something tells me we can pull some beautiful pranks on this lot."

A small smile broke the corners of his mouth. "I'd ... like that, Martis."

She hugged him. "Good. I think they're still serving dinner. Let's get you fed."

* * *

The Gryffindors and Slytherins were ready to strike at each other's throats ... specifically the self-named Marauders of Gryffindor - Sirius Black, James Potter, Peter Pettigrew, and Remus Lupin - and the Slytherin duo known at large as Snips and Spirals - Severus Snape and Britomartis Vox.

It came to a head a few days after the Mud Incident when Peter Pettigrew and James Potter cornered Martis in the hallways between classes.

"We don't believe a little girl like you beat up Sirius Black," James Potter declared.

"Why?" she asked. "Does he normally pick on small children and house-elves so nobody would know his terrible secret?" She leaned forward, her sunglasses glaring his reflection back at him. "And what are you doing yourself but ganging up on a helpless little girl who couldn't possibly have beaten up a big strong Gryffindor Chaser?"

Potter blinked, his glasses slipping down his nose. "I get the feeling I should be feeling maladjusted."

"I'll scream 'rape' if you really want to feel maladjusted," she offered helpfully.

"Can we just forget the whole thing?" Pettigrew asked. "I'll take that jar of peanut butter as payment."

Martis held the jar against her chest. "You've got to be kidding, Rat-Boy. I paid for it -"

"So you can pay us with it," Pettigrew insisted.

"Oh, you're so pathetic - fine, take it. Hope you choke on the chunky pieces." She shoved it into his gut and stalked off as angry as she could.

"Hee-hee!" Pettigrew chortled as he high-fived Potter.

* * *

"What did you do?" Sev asked as Martis plopped down next to him in the Slytherin common room after dinner.

She offered him a Cornish Pixie Stik and he accepted; she ripped open hers with her teeth and giggled before swallowing a mouthful. "Nothing."

"Spirals ..."

Martis tapped her finger against the end of his nose. He flinched a little but added an apologetic smile as she replied, "I just gave them a jar of chunky peanut butter, Snips."

"Chunky peanut butter?" he repeated. "What does that do?"

"Well, I enchanted it for a variation on a Muggle practical joke I saw once," she explained. "Give a person a jar of peanut butter and they open it, causing a bunch of fake snakes made of springs to pop out and scare them."

"So what did you do?" he asked as he patted Medusa's head. "Put real snakes in it?"

"No. Something better." She giggled. "Tomorrow morning, we should hear something about Gryffindor's flood."

Sev gazed at her, not sure what to make of her cryptic statement.

Since he had accepted Britomartis Vox into his life, it seemed a large weight had been lifted from his chest. So far, she had accepted his company and sat with him during meals and talked about classes. She seemed so much stronger even though she remained nearly silent around the rest of their classmates. None of them could goad her, none of them could break her steely persona, and none of them could bend her to their whims. Several had mentioned it infuriated them that she wore sunglasses all the time, even at nighttime. They can't see what she's thinking.

But, so far, he adored her. Like ... an angel or something. Or whatever. She was too good to him. So far.

He still half-expected her to trip him to the ground and laugh at him.

But desperation for friendship ignored the paranoid rantings at the back of his mind.

Sev poured the rest of his Cornish Pixie Stik in his mouth and tapped the end of her nose with the straw. "Whatever you did, I was nowhere near there."

She grinned. "Pansy."

The Slytherins - used to the strange duo - ignored Sev and Martis' giggling, although Narcissa Black and Lucius Malfoy made it a point to sneer at the back of their heads.

* * *

The next morning, the Great Hall was aflutter with the news - a jar spewing a never-ending supply of chunky peanut butter filled half of Gryffindor Tower overnight.

Sev turned to Martis, raising an eyebrow. "Spirals!"

Martis continued eating her boiled egg. "Yes, Snips?"

"The peanut butter!"

Her mouth remained in an indifferent straight line. "Yes. All over the place. Sad for them, having to smell peanut butter in their dorms until the house-elves finish cleaning it up." She sighed. "Whoever had the jar of peanut butter must be in trouble."

Sev gazed at her in horror, and then his eyes shifted around to see if anyone was staring at them.

Everyone was eating breakfast and talking as usual.

"They won't trace you, will they?"

"The Moopy Marauders would have to implicate themselves if they tell on me." She reached for the honey to pour into her oatmeal. "Anyway, McGonagall will be busy with those guys for having it in their dorms in the first place. No worries."

He smiled nervously. "I'm glad I'm on your side."

She smiled sweetly. "Always, Snips."

James Potter approached them; it was obvious he had tried to clean the peanut butter from his glasses, but they were smeared in places, and at least one piece of peanut chunk was sticking to the frames.


She looked up at him. "Why, Mr. Potter, you look terrible." She grinned. "Did you and Rat-Boy like the peanut butter you stole from me?"

"That was a set-up," he growled.

"I'm not sure what you mean, but it's clear extortion is not your cup of tea. Have you considered crochet for your new hobby?"

His eyes narrowed. "Watch it, Vox. Just watch it from now on."

"I'll still be ready to scream 'rape'. Now go fondle your boyfriends in the showers, you still reek of peanut butter."

James Potter stomped off. Martis and Sev fell against each other, laughing like idiots.

Perhaps Spirals Vox would be good to have around after all...