Disclaimer: All Harry Potter people, places, things, and ideas (all Harry Potter nouns) belong to J. K. Rowlings. Mordecai and Elisabeth are mine.
Chapter 34: Announcements.
Minerva and Severus arrived at Hogwarts and headed into the castle to tell Mordecai the news. They found him sitting in the common room reading a book about famous Potions Masters in history. Severus cleared his throat and Mordecai's head jerked up. He set the book down and walked over to them.
"It's good to see you again, Prof- I mean…" he trailed off, not quite sure how to address his mentor, if he would want to be addressed as 'dad.'
Severus stood in front of him and the two were nearly the same height. He placed his hand on his son's shoulder. "I've finally been cleared and it's alright if you want to call me something other than 'Professor Snape' or 'sir.'"
"Alright, hello dad," Mordecai added with a smile.
Minerva stepped into view and he greeter her as well. "We have some news that I wanted to tell you about before anyone else heard it," she paused and showed him the engagement ring. "Severus and I are getting married."
"So you're saying that we can actually be a family?" Mordecai inquired with a smirk that mirrored Severus'. His parents nodded and he hugged them both.
Severus cleared his throat as they parted. "Well, enough of that sentimental stuff. Minerva, we should be heading back to Grimmauld Place."
"Alright. Mordecai, we'll see you later, and feel free to tell Elisabeth," she mentioned before she left with her fiancé.
Elisabeth entered the common room a moment later and yawned, having slept in that Saturday morning. "Hello Cyrus, how did you…" she trailed off when he suddenly grasped her shoulders.
She stared at him wide-eyed. "I have to tell you something incredible. My parents are engaged. They just told me a little while ago," he explained with a broad grin.
"Oh Cyrus, that's fantastic!" she exclaimed. He took her hand in his and headed toward the door. "Where are we going?"
"They said that they were heading back to Grimmauld Place and I think they forgot to tell Aunt Fiona," he stated briefly before they dashed down the hall to find his aunt's rooms.
Fiona opened the door, surprised to find Mordecai standing there. And then she noticed Elisabeth. "What are you two doing here instead of eating breakfast in the Great Hall? I was just going in that direction," she mentioned.
"He has something to tell you that you probably won't believe," Elisabeth commented.
The older witch raised an eyebrow. "Lad, are… are you two engaged?" she questioned.
Mordecai and Elisabeth looked at each other and laughed. "Us? No, Aunt Fiona, but mum and Professor Snape are," he clarified.
"Well thank goodness, I thought they'd never get around to it," she stated with a sigh of relief. The three walked to the Great Hall, wondering how Minerva and Severus were doing at Grimmauld Place.
The Order was finishing breakfast, all of them chatting at once, creating a roar of conversation. "As chaotic as this is, it's nice to be having breakfast together," Harry hollered to Lupin, who sat across from him.
It just happened that the conversations seemed to pause at the same time as Lupin hollered back, "The only ones not here are Severus and Minerva."
Everyone looked around with curiosity. "That's strange, I don't recall them coming down at all this morning," Molly mentioned.
"Actually, I don't recall them coming back at any point last night, so who knows were they could be," Tonks added.
A collective shiver of discomfort ran through the group and Hermione watched disapprovingly. "Oh honestly, all of you act like children sometimes. They probably played chess all night," she interjected.
Severus and Minerva apparated into the next room and entered the dining area, being greeted with several bemused looks. Minerva turned to Severus and they spoke loudly enough for everyone to hear. "Do we have something on our faces?"
He snorted and shook his head. "I think they are just suspicious of our whereabouts. We have been gone since yesterday."
"Ah yes, and won't they be surprised to learn that we played chess?" she commented with a wry smile.
"I told you so," they heard Hermione say.
He kissed Minerva softly. "Should we tell them now or later?"
She returned the kiss. "If we tell them now, it will be less of a bother later."
Satisfied with a conclusion, they faced the others, his left hand holding her right one as they walked over to two empty chairs. "Before you all have any more theories on what we were up to, we have an announcement," Severus remarked.
Minerva lifted her left hand for them all to see. "Severus and I are engaged."
There was a dead silence before Ron declared, "Bloody hell!"
"Ronald!" Hermione scolded. "Congratulations, Professors."
"Thank you, Miss Granger," Minerva stated.
"Do you have a date yet? Will you both have the same names next year? Are you going to tell the students? Will the Ministry let you do that?" were some of the questions the two were bombarded with.
Minerva put her hands up. "Let us answer these as best we can. We do not have a date yet, since Severus is a free man, I would like to take his name, which means that students will know eventually, and according to what I know about current Ministry laws, it is legal," she replied in one breath.
Severus, tired of the investigation, stood to find himself a cup of tea. He paused by Minerva and offered to get her a cup as well. She nodded and he left, glad for a moment of piece. The dull roar of conversation began anew when he returned. As they drank their cups, the conversation volume was just low enough for them to hear a stray comment.
"Please tell me they're not planning on having kids," Ron said to Fred and George.
Minerva choked on her tea for a moment at the audacity of the comment. Severus looked at the young wizard incredulously, and then back to Minerva. They exchanged knowing glances, both thinking about Mordecai. All of the sudden the humor of the situation struck Severus and on this rare occasion, he began to laugh. Then he could not stop laughing and Minerva joined in. The rest of the Order stared at the two as if they had gone mental. When they were finally able to stop laughing and this time no one questioned them, uncertain as to what response questions would receive.
December began and it flowed into January and February. At the end of March, the rain decided to pour. The weekend of Mordecai's eighteenth birthday he and Elisabeth were invited to Grimmauld Place. They had apparated onto the property, but not inside of the house. "They must have a higher clearance than us to enter," Mordecai mentioned as he held the black umbrella over Elisabeth's head.
"Well let's hurry then. With the umbrella over my head, you're getting soaked," she reminded him.
They rushed as fast as they could without slipping. Minerva greeted them at the back door and eyed Mordecai with concern. "Oh, I'm sorry that you got caught in the rain. I should have warned you about how difficult it was to apparate here. You probably don't have a spare set of robes that are dry, do you?"
He shook his head and sighed. "At least Lisa's dry."
His girlfriend eyed him wryly. "For once, but considering that you're dripping all over the floor, we should as someone to loan you extra robes until yours are dry," she mentioned rationally.
"He can probably fit into my extra robes," Severus remarked, walking over from the other side of the kitchen.
"Thanks, dad," Mordecai stated as Severus led him out of the room.
Minerva helped Elisabeth find a room and then the two walked toward the living room. The younger witch sat while Minerva left the room to make tea. When Mordecai entered the living room wearing Severus' black robes, everyone suddenly raised an eyebrow and looked at him with scrutiny.
"What on earth are you all staring at?" he asked gruffly, sounding like Severus. Then he cleared his throat and sounded more like himself. "Haven't you ever seen anyone borrow someone's extra robes before?"
He sat down and Elisabeth leaned toward him. "They were all staring at you because you look like Professor Snape," she whispered.
A moment later, the Potions Master entered the room and was met by similar stares. "What on earth are you all staring at? I'm not in the mood for this sort of nonsense," he grumbled.
Seeing that the whole order was still staring at them, Mordecai realized that he had failed to introduce himself as well as his girlfriend. He stood as he spoke. "I'm sorry that I haven't introduced myself. I am Mordecai Maddock and this is my girlfriend Elisabeth. We were invited here by Professors Snape and McGonagall."
A few of the Order members said "hello," while others appeared slightly worried.
When Minerva emerged from the kitchen with a tea tray, Mordecai's back was to her and he was standing next to the coffee table. From the back, Mordecai looked a great deal like the Potions Master. "Severus, could you please get the tea tray and set it down on the-" she suddenly stopped in midsentence when she spied Severus a few feet away.
Mordecai turned and took the tray. After getting a cup of tea for himself and Elisabeth, he sat quietly. Minerva's eyes were focused on her hands. Severus sighed heavily. It's only a matter of time before they ask, since no one in the Order knows how to mind his or her own business, he thought to himself.
His son responded to his thought, talking to Severus mentally. Perhaps it's best that they know the truth. I am perfectly fine with who my parents are.
Hermione, at seeing Mordecai, had begun counting something. "Mordecai, how old are you?" she questioned.
"I'll be eighteen tomorrow," he replied.
"It makes sense then, nearly twenty years," she responded cryptically.
Physically, Mordecai's hair colour was more like Minerva's, while his need of a haircut made it resemble Severus'. His brow and eyes were identical to Severus and his nose was Minerva's. Mordecai's overall build was also very similar to Severus'. Elisabeth smirked at the Order's scrutiny.
"You might as well just tell them all and get it over with," she commented with a smile.
"Now I understand what that prosecutor was trying to draw out of all of you," Arthur realized.
Hermione looked over to Minerva. "Professor, is Mordecai your son, as well as Professor Snape's?"
"Yes," all three answered simultaneously.
"Bloody hell!" Ron exclaimed, before being smacked on the back of the head by Hermione.
"And you've all managed to keep it a secret for this long," Molly added with wonder. Most of the Order members were stunned at the discovery, but others like Harry and Lupin simply smiled, having guessed or at least suspected the truth a while ago.
The rest of the year seemed to drift by and soon it was Mordecai and Elisabeth's graduation ceremony. Before they were to be arranged alphabetically, Elisabeth had something to tell him, almost jumping with excitement. "Cyrus, the British and Irish Quidditch League is going to let me try out to play Quidditch professionally!"
He pulled her into a hug. "Lisa, that's terrific! I promise I'll watch every game."
"I know you will. If it doesn't work out, I think I should go into Auror training," she mentioned.
As various staff members were arranging the students, Flitwick approached Mordecai. "Mr. Maddock, the Headmistress wants you to sit with the 'S's,'" he relayed.
The young man raised an eyebrow as he went. "Professor Flitwick, did she give any particular reason?"
The goblin shook his head. "No, I'm afraid she didn't."
At least sitting with the "S's" Mordecai was seated directly in front of Elisabeth's row. "I wonder why she moved you," Elisabeth mentioned, leaning forward.
"We'll find out soon," Mordecai stated.
Outside of the Great Hall, Minerva waited for Severus. "Why is Mordecai sitting in the 'S's'?" he inquired. She showed him the list for the graduating class and he gasped. "I thought you changed it."
"I managed to change the list for the incoming first-years, but I forgot that the names on this list originally come from the other list," she admitted.
As she looked over the list again, Severus noticed a piece of parchment attached to the back. It came off easily and he showed it to her. "Did you know that this was back there?" She shook her head as they both read the note:
Minerva and Severus,
You are probably wondering why Mr. Maddock is on the list by his actual last name. By now the two of you should have reconciled and he should be ready to accept who his parents are. I wish you all the best. Minerva, remember that you and Severus have each other to lean on and I hope someday that you two will find a deep and meaningful friendship.
Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Minerva brushed away a tear as she looked at the date. Dumbledore had written it the year that Mordecai began his schooling there. She looked up at the Potions Master. "I miss him, Severus. It hasn't been easy to take his place, but I've given the job my best."
Severus drew her into a warm hug. "I miss him too. Doing your best is all he would have asked of you, and all he ever asked of any of us." Hearing a few other staff members come down the hall, they quickly separated and headed into the Great Hall to begin the ceremony.
When the names called reached the "M's" Mordecai was surprised not to hear his name. He turned to face Elisabeth. "You don't think that they would actually…" he trailed off.
"I suppose it is possible. Since he's no longer in trouble with the Ministry, maybe they decided to tell more than the Order," she whispered.
He almost forgot to breath when he heard the Headmistress call out, "Snape, Mordecai Cyrus."
There had been a light murmur of conversation, but now all noise had ceased and all eyes were on Mordecai. "This was Dumbledore's idea," she told him as he accepted his diploma and shook various professors' hands.
When he came to Severus, the man smiled. "You are in need of an apprenticeship if you truly wish to become a Potions Master. If you don't mind seeing Hogwarts again, I am in need of an assistant," he offered.
Mordecai grinned. "Thank you, sir, it would be an honour to work with you," he said formally.
"You're welcome, son," Severus added, quietly enough for only Mordecai to hear.
He wanted to tell Elisabeth after the ceremony, but Mordecai did not see her until the graduation ball. They met in the common room and he escorted her to the Great Hall. "Dad wants me to be his apprentice next year," he conveyed.
She smiled brightly. "That's wonderful. I can hardly believe- what do you have in your pocket?" she commented when she realized that he was looking for something.
"I'll tell you later," he relayed.
Before the ball was to begin, Minerva had a few announcements. Severus was seated at the table with the rest of the staff members as she spoke. "I am pleased to announce that Professor Snape will be rejoining us next year. He has been exonerated for offenses regarding the death of our beloved Headmaster and he will be teaching Potions again."
The announcement was greeted with dead silence. Mordecai and Elisabeth decided to clap in hope of getting everyone else to clap. Slowly their plan worked. A few minutes later the music began. A band from the magic world had been asked to play. The first few dances were energetic and the kind that teenagers usually find themselves enjoying.
Severus and Minerva watched the dances from the staff table. The other professors had all congratulated Severus on being a free man and coming back to teach. However, a few noticed that he was not as irritable and sardonic as he once was. Rolanda Hooch walked over to Minerva.
"What on earth did you do to that man? I've never known him to be anything but snarky," she commented.
Minerva chuckled and then showed the flying instructor her ring. "Sometimes helping goes both ways."
The other woman's eyes widened. "I should have known. You've had eyes for each other for years. I can't believe that I didn't think of- wait. Is Mr. Maddock actually Severus' son?"
Minerva was smiling broadly and fingered her ring whispering her reply. "He's not only Severus' son. He has my nose."
The flying instructor's jaw dropped. "Well wonders never cease."
At that point Severus walked up behind Minerva and surprised her by kissing her on the cheek. She turned and kissed his cheek as well, not wanting to shock the students, or the staff, any more in one afternoon than she already had. "I would ask you to dance, but the current songs are too rowdy," Severus remarked.
"That's alright. I'm sure they'll play a slower number soon," Minerva added.
As if on cue, the music changed to the Tango. Minerva blushed as she thought of dancing to that one. Severus placed his mouth close to her ear. "I wouldn't mind dancing to that though. Are you feeling bold?"
He pulled away, wearing his customary smirk. She grinned mischievously and took his arm. "I think today is a good day to be a Gryffindor in my case, and a Slytherin in yours."
They tried not to draw attention, dancing off on once side, but it is not every day that one sees one's professors dancing the Tango, and dancing well. Elisabeth and Mordecai attempted to mimic the dance, but ended up tripping each other and landing fortunately in two chairs. "They're really good at it," Elisabeth observed.
Mordecai laughed. "I wonder how much we would need to practice."
"Probably more than a Quidditch team practices strategies," Elisabeth teased. She stood and headed over to the refreshment table.
When she returned with two glasses of punch, Mordecai began rummaging through his pocket, accepting the punch and taking a sip. By this time the tango had stopped and a faster dance had begun. Severus and Minerva had returned to the staff table and were observing their son and his girlfriend.
Elisabeth drank her punch and eyes him curiously. Finally he had found it: a small white box. "Cyrus, what on earth are you doing?"
She set her punch down as he took her left hand in his. Gasping when he opened the box and removed a ring, she continued to blink as he slid it onto her finger. With his wand, he made the ring fit. It was a simple gold band with a pink diamond in the middle.
"Lisa, I love you. I have gotten through every difficult situation because you've been here with me the entire time. You have a good sense of circumstances and you always know what to say when I need someone to say something. I can't imagine my life without you. Elisabeth Wellington, will you do me the honour of becoming my wife?" Mordecai proposed.
She felt an overwhelming excitement flowing from her as her eyes misted. Throwing her arms around his neck, nearly knocking him out of the chair, she held onto him tightly. "I love you too, so much. You've been my common sense, as well as the boy I've been in love with since I was eleven. I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Yes, I will marry you," she declared.
He drew her face close to his and they kissed passionately. Minerva had to refrain from clapping as she and Severus watched the two. "I was wondering when he'd get around to it," Severus commented with a smirk.
Minerva sighed with contentment. "You do realize that we may need to have a double wedding if they don't want to wait."
"Now that would be interesting, but I'd rather not share my wedding, if it's alright with you," he told her, causing her to smile again.
Mordecai and Elisabeth had decided that they wanted to wait a year first. Severus and Minerva held their wedding on the second Thursday in July. With the afternoon sun filtering in through the glass windows in the chapel, the two were only aware of themselves, though most of the staff, the Order, and several of Minerva's cousins had come. She wore a form-fitting white gown with a V-neck and three-quarter-length sleeves. He wore a black tuxedo.
The Minister of Magic performed a binding ceremony and uttered, "I present to you Mr. and Mrs. Severus Snape. You may now kiss the bride." The Potions Master took the opportunity to pull his new bride into a deep kiss that lasted just long enough. They pulled back to the sound of applause.
When Minerva tossed the flowers Elisabeth caught the bouquet. They held a reception and Mordecai gave the toast. "I hope you two have many happy years together and that your lives prosper. Remember that you two have each other to lean on, if you continue to care for each other as you always have. To Severus and Minerva Snape," he raised is glass of sparkling cider, having chosen it over Champaign.
As other conversations began, Minerva watched as her son spoke with is fiancé. "I just had a disturbing realization. In a few years, we could be grandparents," she relayed.
He snorted. "Learning how to be a parent was confusing enough. I don't know the first thing about grandchildren," he admitted, running his hand through his hair and looking slightly pale.
She chuckled. "Then we will do what we've always done and learn as we go."
He kissed her soundly. "And what would you like to do after this clamour of cake and drinks, Mrs. Snape?" he inquired.
Kissing him back, she murmured, "I want to spend time with you, playing chess and sharing a good bottle of wine, Mr. Snape."
"I think that sounds like an excellent plan," he told her. Noticing that the rest of the guests were occupied, he gently took her hands in his and led her to the back door. "I'm sure they won't even notice us leaving a little early."
As they slipped out the back door, Mordecai and Elisabeth smiled as they watched the other two. "Next year should be interesting with those two," she conveyed.
He chuckled and took one last look at his parents as they left. "No more than usual, Lisa, no more than usual."
(This story has been enjoyable to write and I only hope that it has been as fun to read. Thank you so much for your wonderful reviews. My thanks to lullaby moon, Annette-Rose, Kristen, Motet, excessivelyperky, trulyamused, Leta McGotor, Kimmy Malfoy, and Cessations for reviewing :D)