Disclaimer: HP owned by JKR, etc.
A/N: Yes, we know that it has been ages since the last update. We would like to apologize for this chapter taking so long to get out to you. Homework, Work, and other things kept intruding. At any rate, we hope you enjoy! Keres
"Moosh-moosh?" Mathias raised his hand and knocked on the door. "I have big surprise for yooou!"
Snape cringed at the falsetto coming from his father behind the locked door. The lock wouldn't keep his father out if the man really wanted to get in; a gesture would open it. It was more the principle of having a locked door between him and the rest of the world. He didn't want to come out and he didn't want the rest of the world to come in.
"They have discovered a new potion!" Mathias sang in the hallway. "Is exciting!"
Snape raised his head and stared at the door. Really? That is... oh he thinks it is so easy. I'm not coming out.
Mathias tapped one of his claws on the door. "Moosh-moosh?" Snape ignored him. "I will buy you a nice chocolate bar!"
Snape only raised an eyebrow at the door. He was a fully grown man who did not need sweets to get him out of a foul temper. And he wasn't coming out.
"So you say!" Mathias snarled from outside the door.
"Wait." Severus thought. "Since when did he manage to read the thoughts inside my head?"
"Only since forever. Now, I suggest that you get your pouting behind out from inside that infernal room before I have to come in there and get you myself!"
Severus paused. He knew his goose was cooked. There was only one instance when his father spoke proper English-- when he was very angry.
Snape ran his hands through his hair and sighed. If he went out there, he would have to face...them. The boys were used to seeing him in clothing that showed off, well, everything. Now, everyone at Grimmauld Place would... good heavens. That would, they would...know he danced. Ballet. In Russia, dancers were held in high esteem for their talent. In England, well, they were lucky to be considered straight. He knew there was a reason he hadn't told anyone...including Albus.
Oh Merlin no...Mathias is tired of the games.
The dread increased.
He knew it. He was totally doomed.
Severus jumped up from his desk and opened the door, letting Mathias reach "Odeen" only meant one thing-- sudden death.
"You rang?" Snape drawled at his father.
He received a glare from Mathias that made the hair on the back of his neck rise.
"Come." The old vampire said. "The time for amusement has left us. It is time to train."
Harry and Draco really couldn't believe their eyes. Grandfather had, minutes before, stormed into the sitting room with Severus following closely behind. Not that in and of itself would be so unusual, but it was the fact that Severus Snape appeared to be pouting.
Mathias motioned for them to follow, clocking his great claws. Harry and Draco looked at each other, shrugged, and followed their elders out into the hallway, past the library, through the kitchen, and arrived at a door they had never seen before.
Harry noticed Mathias muttering something under his breath and then the door opened to reveal what, to Harry's mind, could only be construed as a variety of refined instruments of torture. Some things, such as the muggle exercise and weight training equipment, they had used in Russia. Others, like a device that looked a bit too much like a medieval rack, he had never seen before.
Severus paused inside the doorway and looked around. He paled when he saw the medieval rack and shook his head. "Father, what is that?" He demanded, motioning towards the wall.
"Is useful." Mathias answered absently.
"For what?" Snape questioned.
"Pain conditioning." He told Severus lightly with a shrug of one shoulder.
Harry and Draco looked at each other in alarm. They had known their grandfather was not exactly sane, but never had they such strong evidence of it before. "I though he loved us." Draco whispered to Harry. Harry could only shrug.
"Father, I think there are easier ways to accomplish that then putting them on the rack." Snape said as he stepped in front of the boys.
Draco and Harry moved backwards towards the door. Their grandfather was capable of catching them with a thought, but they would run if they had to, if only to convince the man that the rack was a bad idea.
"Rack, schmack." Mathias waved one hand and the rack disappeared. "No more rack. Rack gone." He told them. Harry and Draco almost collapsed in relief until they saw bamboo poles spring up in its place.
"Not those either." Severus said, slightly annoyed.
"Fine. Have it your way." Mathias made the bamboo poles disappear as well. "You handle pain conditioning. Be fuddy-duddy. Why I remember back in Old Country when we weren't afraid of a little pain..."
"And what country was that again?" Severus asked facetiously.
Mathias paused. "You know... I don't rightly remember."
"My point exactly."
Harry and Draco began to breathe. It seemed that Severus had, once again, saved them from the odd meanderings of their grandfather's mind.
Mathias turned to the boys. "I had hoped to not to have to put you through all of this, but I can never be sure that I will always be around when you need me."
Harry and Draco looked at Mathias with puzzled expressions.
"No! No. Nothing like that." Mathias assured them. "Sunbeams, I thought you would have realized that I have no intentions of going anywhere."
Harry and Draco sighed in relief.
"I simply want you to know how to fight like me. Just in case. As far as I know, I cannot be killed, but that does not mean that nothing will happen to me. I need to be assured that you will survive to be as old as me."
Severus raised an eyebrow. "What are you talking about?"
"Nothing...I was just letting them know exactly how much I care about them."
Mathias placed a pleading look on his face. "No really, I simply want to make sure-"
"Father, how many times are you apt to try to forcibly change us all into vampires?"
Draco and Harry's eyes widened. Harry swallowed. There was no way that he was becoming a vampire...EVER.
Mathias sighed and slumped his shoulders. "I will cease pestering when you finally agree to it." The old vampire took a deep breath and turned to the boys.
"Go. Run." He pointed to the treadmills. "I expect 5 kilometers within the hour."
Draco pursed his lips. "Do we have to?"
Mathias smiled. "Yes, Mikhail, you do."