Chapter Ten

Happy Birthday!

"Headmaster! The Dark Lord, he planned to-," Severus started to rattled as soon as he was off of his son's embrace.

Albus Dumbledore raised his right hand, indicating the Potions master to stop. "Yes, yes, Lucas had already told me about it. This really needs serious attention. We have five hours until dawn and I'll leave to collect the Order. You stay here, Severus. You're not in the shape to do this."

The old man started to leave when Lucas called him, "Sir? Can I go too?"

His question brought his father's attention who were lost in thoughts before to him, "Hell, no! You're not even a member."

Dumbledore raised his eyebrows and couldn't help but chuckle at the man's protectiveness toward his son. "I guess you can't join us, then young Mr. Snape," he said cheerfully and left.

Lucas threw a glare at his father after the headmaster left. Glare number three hundred and eleven, typical Snape's why-did-you-say-that glare. But then the glare softened as he saw his father's concerned face.

Once again, Lucas hugged his father and meanwhile, Severus patted the boy's head.

The next morning, both father and son were called to the headmaster's office. They walked there together, with the younger man supporting the older one as he wasn't in a really good shape to walk.

When they reached the gargoyle, Lucas said the password, "Jelly beans," and the gargoyle sprung alive, revealing a spiral stair behind. They stepped to the stair and the stair moved up. When they reached the top, the got out of the stair and knocked at the door.

Dumbledore opened the door for them and they made their way to the office. They sat side by side in front of the headmaster and waited the headmaster to begin.

"As you know, I've sent some order members to Azkaban last night, and alerted the ministry to send some of their aurors. We managed to stop the attack. However, a certain Death Eater was freed," said Albus with a grave look on his face.

"Lucius Malfoy," Lucas hissed furiously.

The headmaster nodded softly, his usual twinkling eyes were dull at the moment.

"Is anyone from our side injured?" the silent Potions Master spoke for the first time.

"Some members got some scratches here and there, nothing major, though. Oh Lucas," his eyes brightened slightly.

Lucas hummed and looked at the headmaster.

"Your birthday is coming. I believe there should be a celebration."

He blushed and tried to refused, "Headmaster! It's alright. I don't think a celebration is a good idea in a time like this."

"Nonsense, I'm in with it," his father said. "Is there anyone you can trust with your real identity?"

"Maybe… I think I can trust Remus."

"That werewolf!" his father asked, shocked.

"Hey! Even though he's a werewolf he's still human! Why do you hate him so much anyway? Is it something about your school years?" Lucas said in defence.

To his father silence Lucas added, "Oh come on, Dad. You have to admit that he's not as bad as the other Marauders."

Marauders! That chaotic group even had a name?

Looking at his son, he didn't want to let his hope down and finally gave a nod, "Very well. You can tell him."

Oh shit, I'm getting soft…

Lucas said his gratitude, rose from the chair and hugged his father while the elderly headmaster watched the two with amusement in his eyes.

How someone can change in just some weeks, we'll never know.

"Excuse me? But did I hear you right?" said a shocked Remus Lupin.

"Hell yes! Are you saying that my son lied to you!" said a rather irritated potions master.

"No! I'm just trying to digest it. But really, are you sure? I know your emerald eyes, but still you look so different."

"Why don't you try using your enriched sense of smell, Moony?" the young man who kept silent during the werewolf's dumbfounded moment asked quietly.

The ex-professor concentrated and started sniffing the smell of the boy who was sitting in front of him. He recognized the scent. Indeed! He had known that scent for almost sixteen years. The young Snape was definitely the one and only Harry Potter. He let his jaw dropped for a moment before regaining his control and whispered a single word, "How?"

The Snape's began launching the whole story to the worn man and when they were all covered, Lupin gave a bone-crushing hug to the younger Snape.

Lucas could barely breathe and sent a look to his father for help.

"Uh-hum," Severus coughed lightly. "If I may remind you, Lupin, my son needs to breathe."

"Oh, I'm sorry," Remus said and released him.

"It's alright, Professor. Anyway, my birthday is coming this Saturday, would you like to come for a dinner?"

The werewolf grinned widely and gave a vigorous nod.

"I'll see you in our quarter, then." Lucas said quietly and left the room after he gave his father and the ex-professor a small, encouraging smile. His father had promised him to make up with the last marauder after he begged him to on their way from the Headmaster's office. Smiling softly as he closed the door, he headed to the library.

The library was quiet, as always, but it wasn't as crowded as it used to be when school was on. Lucas greeted Madame Pince, the librarian and headed to his favourite section when he wasn't studying, Muggle Sections. He didn't know since when he was so interested in Muggle's subjects, but sometimes he thought that those books had more senses that Wizarding ones. It might be the fact that he was raised as a muggle. Scanning through the endless bookshelves in his sight, he found a book that attracted him and took it from the shelf. Looking at the cover, it read "Sun Tzu: the Art of War". Without a second thought, he took the book and went to the nearest corner. Lucas plopped down on the lounge chair and he was quickly engulfed with the book.

Time passed by and Lucas didn't notice it. He was halfway done with the book when he felt someone's presence there. Looking up from his book, he found Elaine sitting in front of him, also reading a book. It looked like that she saw Lucas had looked up from his book because she lowered hers gave him a smile. Lucas smiled back and greeted her, "Hey, sorry I didn't notice you earlier."

"It's okay, actually. I'm also reading."

Lucas shrugged, "Anyway, would you like to come for dinner in my dad's quarter this Saturday?"

"Sure," she said lightly and glanced at her watch, "Dinner's coming soon. I'm leaving." She stood up and returned her book to the shelf nearby. "You coming?"

"Yeah," Lucas said and followed her suit. They walked together to the great hall and had a quiet and comfortable dinner with the rest of the staffs.

A silhouette appeared from the spiral staircase at the astronomy tower. The shadow moved gracefully and sat down near a window, where the moonlight was visible and revealed the face of the young Snape. Lucas folded his knees and put his arms around them. Voldemort was too quiet these days. There hadn't been any attacks since the one in the Department of Mystery. The memory of that night was still fresh in his mind. Sometimes he wondered whether or not he should place it in a pensieve so he didn't have to think about it. Sighing softly, he released his arms from his knees and took the flute he hid inside his cloak.

His lips and the flute hole converged and he started blowing a beautiful melody. He put all of his mind and soul to the song which make the song more beautiful than the original piece of music. The sad and melancholy song ended, only to be replaced with a lighter one. This one sounded more cheerful although there was still a tinge of sadness inside it. Lucas felt better after playing the two songs and went back to his room.

Days passed by and it was soon Lucas' birthday...

The birds chirped melodiously, interrupting the young man who was sleeping soundlessly on his comfortable bed. With a small smile, he rubbed his eyes slowly with one hand and let the other hand to search for his glasses on the bedside table. It was five minutes until he realized that he could see clearly without his glasses now. Smiling slightly at the now not usable habit, Lucas got up and went to the bathroom to groom.

Despite that he never groomed when he was at the Dursleys, the young Snape had discovered a new routine to do. He'd never groomed before because the Dursleys only let him in the washroom in a very, I repeat, VERY limited time. It was all better now, due the fact that there were no more restrictions and his hair is steadier than before. Lucas' hair now went down to his back which is tied with a ribbon most of the time. He examined his reflection in the mirror and noticed that his features had completely changed. Those high cheekbones, pale skin, mouth, and the curved eyebrow to some extent were his father's. Lucky for him, that his nose wasn't crooked as the Potion master's. Only two stayed the same, his emerald green orbs, which were flickering with gentle flames inside, and his lightning bolt scar, although it wasn't visible at the moment, hidden by the ancient spell Dumbledore had cast.

With a small smile playing on his lips, he went to the living room. His father wasn't there yet, so he requested two pieces of toast and a glass of milk, which immediately popped on the table out of nowhere. Oh, the joy of having house-elves. Not having to prepare meal by self. Lucas took a bite of the toast and chewed silently.

Lucas almost jumped from his seat when his father spoke, "Well, well… If it isn't the birthday boy…" with a tint of sarcasm yet there was amusement in his voice.

"Oh Dad, don't surprise me next time, will you?"

The professor ignored the comment and proceeded to sit across him. He requested for a glass of orange juice and drank it as soon as it appeared.

"So… Are you looking forward for the dinner tonight?"

"I don't know, I'm not really sure how I feel either," answered Lucas honestly.

"Son, I have something to tell you tonight. Make sure you don't panic though. Prepare yourself," Severus said seriously, staring straight to his son's eyes.

Recognizing the change of atmosphere, Lucas nodded and the two of them continued eating silently.

Lucas spent the rest of his day along the lakeside. He sat below a looming mahogany tree, making some random melody in some pieces of paper.

The sky turned dark so fast that no-one realized that it was already six o'clock in the evening. Lucas who had fallen asleep outside woke up and walked back to his quarter. There, he took a quick shower and dressed casually in white shirts and baggy black pants. He decided not to wear robes. It was holiday after all.

When he went out to the kitchen, the dinner was all set, probably by the house-elves, and all invited ones were already inside. Dumbledore was sitting at the end of the table while his father sat next to him across Lupin. Elaine sat next to the werewolf that left him to sit beside his father.

Lucas gave his peaceful smile to them and sat down. As soon as he sat down Elaine said and pouted, "You. You didn't tell me that it's your birthday! I haven't got any present for you."

"It's not as if I want one..." he said with a mischievous glint in his eyes.

Elaine smiled at this and congratulated him which was soon followed by the other occupants of the room.

"Well then, if you're ready, let's begin the dinner," Dumbledore said and the dishes popped out of nowhere on the table.

All of them started eating and talking merrily. Lucas watched as his father conversed with Lupin about something and smiled inside for the change between them. It seemed that his father manage to tolerate with the last marauder. It wasn't only him observing the two. The aged headmaster was also thinking about the same, and when their gaze met they gave each other a knowing smile.

In order not to make Elaine felt left out, he talked with her in various topics. She was rather quiet like him but they had some similar interests which soon engulfed them in a conversation about music.

Minutes passed and soon all of them were full. Finally Dumbledore realized how late it was and said cheerfully, "Oh my... I forgot that I have a meeting with Minerva tonight... And look at the clock! It's late already... Well then, happy birthday, Lucas. It's been a wonderful dinner and here's a present from me."

After saying that, the headmaster took something from his pocket, enlarged it and gave the wrapped present to Lucas. Lupin also said his goodbye and gave the present to him. Both of them left the room together, leaving two Snapes and Elaine there.

After hanging around for a while, Elaine said her goodbye and apologized for not bringing any gifts. Lucas shrugged it off though, and thanked her for coming. She gave him a smile and walked to the door before looking back to the elder Snape for calling her.

"Miss Elaine. Could you please not tell anyone about my son's birthday? I mean anyone who doesn't participate in tonight's dinner," the Potions Master asked.

Elaine was curious but decided do comply, "Of course..." With that, she left the room.

Severus huffed quietly when they were all alone and looked at Lucas seriously.

"I'm going to tell you that important thing right now..."

Lucas looked intently at his father, trying to figure it out.

"I suppose you have known that we are descendants of Salazar Slytherin and Rowena Ravenclaw?" Severus asked inquiringly.

Lucas nodded his head carefully, still curious where would this lead to.

"Your mother, unlike known by the public, was not completely a muggle-born. She was born to one of the oldest line, Hufflepuffs. However, previous descendants of Helga Hufflepuff turned out to be squibs and lived as muggle from time to time, until Lily was born. She was the first witch for at least 4 centuries. Well, that makes you the last remaining heir of Hufflepuff."

Lucas was beyond shocked that time, but his father said, "Don't be too shocked for now. There's more to come."

Lucas' jaw almost hit the floor. If the situation wasn't serious, Snape Sr. might've laughed. But he merely rolled his eyes and continued, "When you were born, James Potter adopted you. In Wizarding world, to adopt someone, you have to perform a blood ritual. So, you also have Potter blood in you. The Potter family had always known to be the direct descendant of Godric Gryffindor. So you're also the heir of Gryffindor."

Lucas' jaw had hit the floor at that revelation and when he managed to got it back, he slumped to his seat, muttering, "I need some drink..."

A glass of ice water popped in front of him which he gladly sipped. He managed to get his voice back and said to his father in amazement, "Well, that's certainly shocking."

"Around their 16th birthday, some powerful wizards get the tendency to gain special talents. Yours might be already there, or they might not. But they'll come sooner or later. Anyway, that talents, some of them you might be able to use it immediately, but others might need training. So if you feel you've got the talent to... whatever it is, don't hesitate to start training. I'll help you whenever you need it. Here, your birthday present," he said smiling and took a small box wrapped in black cloth.

Lucas took and opened the box. Inside was a silver-chained necklace with a beautifully carved Snape Crest with his initial above it as the pendant. He looked at it fondly and touched the pendant softly. The carvings were so well done. Lucas looked up and met his father's loving gaze. He smiled softly and mouthed thank-you.

a/n. I think that's the longest chapter in this story ). Snape's OOC, I know... I'm sorry for not updating for a long, long time, but, oh well, no reason at all. Writer's block, that's it. And I'm sort of busy with school until recently, though this idle time won't last for a long time. Hahaha. I love being busy though ). Clutchy 06/01/2006 Happy New Year 2006 to you all!
Do you notice any different style of writing? I wrote the beginning long before today...