Disclaimer- I own none of the Harry Potter characters and some of the dialogue are lyrics from the musical Evita.
Waltz for Severus and Hermione
So many things had changed since the end of the trio's final year. Harry had gone on to become head Auror at the ministry and finally married Ginny. Ron had married and moved to America with his new wife and begun a family. Severus Snape had come back to the good side and in a strange twist of fate become Minister for Magic, and so far had been an admirable success. Hermione Granger had taken the role of potions teacher and deputy headmistress at Hogwarts, because despite being incredibly able at most professions had never managed to find one that she wanted to devote her life to. She found that she was most comfortable in Hogwarts.
She hadn't yet married like her best friends. No she found her work was more than enough for her to worry about right now and she still had time. She was only 29, for witch or wizard 30 isn't such a scary age. If truth be known Hermione had thought that she would be married by now. They had been a special someone a while ago but he had asked too much of her. And changed far too much for her liking.
No she found that without Severus she could enjoy herself far more than she ever could. If she wanted to do something on a whim she could. If she wanted to walk round the house naked she could. It didn't matter anymore because it was only Hermione that had to deal with Hermione.
So that's what she was doing. Sat in her rooms at Hogwarts, a 29 year old potions mistress, with only herself and her work to care about. She was marking the practice OWL's and was so far fairly impressed with most of her students. She was contemplating having a cup of tea when a face appear in her fire place.
"Professor are you busy?" came the crisp Scottish tones of the headmistress, Minerva McGonagall.
"Not at all, what can I do for you."
"Well it seems that we are going to be hosting an event, a reunion of sorts, to catch up with old friends and remember the ones that we lost to the other side." Minerva said looking at Hermione as if trying to gauge her response.
"I see," was all Hermione replied.
"Well it has been 10 years since the dark side lost their master I thought it would be good idea."
"Yes Minerva I think it's a spectacular idea."
Hermione's stomach dropped, this would mean Severus would be here. She listened on and off to what Minerva was saying for the next 5 minutes, punctuating the rambling with coos and nods at the appropriate points.
This was going to be a bad thing, a very bad thing. It wasn't that she despised her ex-fiancée so much. It was just that she didn't agree with his running of things all the time. He had indeed done the wizarding world some good, at least his office was stable, but there things that Hermione had noticed were wrong.
She had noticed that opposition to Severus was few and far between; when it did arise it disappeared just as suddenly. His changes to the wellbeing of wizarding society were small and insignificant in the grand scheme; they were just hyped up to look a lot bigger and more trouble to the ministry than they really were.
All in all Hermione saw him to be coasting along in his job. This was not the man she knew. No he would have fought and fought for his beliefs but not this Severus, it saddened her somewhat. After all she did still love him on a certain level and she wanted to see him happy and successful, but not like this.
It had been a few weeks since Minerva had mentioned the reunion. Hermione had contacted all the people that were invited and was waiting on replies. She already had a few and with them in her hand climbed the spiral staircase to Minerva's office.
"Come in" came the reply to her knock on the door.
Hermione walked in a faltered slightly, Severus was sat in the chair in front of the desk. Minerva looked up from whatever she was reading.
"Afternoon Minerva," she looked at Severus and nodded, "Minister. I brought the replies to the invitations that I had received."
She laid them on the desk and walked back through the door. She hated it when this happened. His turning up and the awkward moments. She returned to her rooms and carried on with preparations for her next class. This would at least give her something to do until he had left.
At 3.45, just 15 minute before her next class there was a knock on her door. Severus walked in without waiting for an answer.
"Yes minister?" she asked pleasantly.
"Will you stop calling me that? You know my name perfectly well!"
"Well I didn't think it appropriate to use it, especially now that you were such a senior official."
She stared at him, willing him to break this silence. He still hadn't given a reason for being here.
"I just came to say that I will be here for the reunion." He said somewhat lamely.
"I shall pass it on to Minerva. Just you? Or will you be bringing a guest?"
"Yes I shall be bringing a guest."
Hermione pretended to note it down. Another long and pregnant silence. Hermione just looked at him as if to say 'well why are you still here? You have said what you wanted now go.'
He backed down without another word and left as usual. Hermione was so angry. He could be so spiteful sometimes. Just coming to tell her that he was bringing a guest when he could have told Minerva, he had seen her hand all the replies to Minerva. Without thinking Hermione grabbed the nearest thing and threw it at the door he had just walked out of. There were several squeals from students in the corridor waiting to be admitted to the potions lab.
The fateful day arrived all too quickly in Hermione's opinion. The old students and a few old professors filling the great hall with exclamations and stories of days gone by. Hermione and Minerva were playing host to the event, they were after all head mistress and deputy head mistress.
By 8 o'clock most of the guests had arrived, although the Minister himself hadn't shown up yet. Hermione heaved a sigh of relief as they closed the doors get the party underway.
"Good evening" Minerva's voice filled the hall and everyone hushed. " I am delighted to see so many of you here tonight. I felt that after such hard times in past years that a sort of coming together of old acquaintances would serve to strengthen our moral. I hope you have a pleasant and nostalgic evening."
A ripple of applause ran through the hall, as it died away the band started up and several couples appeared on the dance floor.
Hermione watched the swirling figures as she stood by the staff table sipping a glass of wine. She loved dancing, she loved watching people dance. Seeing people in such a close embrace, drowning out all else and only seeing the person in your arms. It was such a romantic notion to Hermione. Hermione missed dancing with Severus they had made such a good couple on the dance floor. He was a fantastic dancer.
"Ladies and gentlemen," a voice called over the din, "the Minister for Magic, Severus Snape."
A loud applause broke out as Severus swept through the doors of the hall, his aurors flanking him. Even Hermione had to admit he looked good, powerful and so sexy in his smart robes. She felt her heart give a silly little thump before sinking into her stomach. This was not going to be the pleasant evening she wanted.
It wasn't until he had made his way down the steps did Hermione notice the woman on his arm. She was the anti-Hermione, slender and blonde, her skin shone with vitality and youth. Her hair framed her face softly and glowed like a halo above her head.
Hermione tore her eyes away from this vision of angelic loveliness; she hated him for bringing her. She sat down at the staff table and filled up her wine glass. She looked around the room from her more lowly position, thankful that she couldn't see him or his trophy girlfriend.
"Hermione," it was Minerva, "I hate to ask you this but as the hosts we do have to welcome them."
Hermione looked at Minerva, her eyes begging her to be excused from her hostess duties. Minerva merely looked at her, with a sternness that commanded Hermione to do what she asked, but also that she was sorry for it.
They made their way through the throng of people to were Severus stood.
"Severus," Minerva said as she took his hand in a welcome, "we are so glad that you made it." Minerva turned to the girl and held out her hand.
"Alysia Enyo, pleased to meet you Professor," her voice was as sweet as her image.
"This is Hogwarts deputy head mistress and head of Gryffindor house, Professor Hermione Granger." Minerva said as she gestured to Hermione.
"Minister," she said as she shook his hand, "Alysia," she nodded at the girl. "I hope you both have a pleasant evening."
With that she turned and went back to her table and her drink. Suddenly the wine was not strong enough for her. She reached for the bottle of firewhiskey and poured herself a generous measure.
"ah I wondered were the firewhiskey was being kept."
Hermione looked up at the person who had spoken, it was a voice she had known oh so well.
"Hermione are you not dancing? As I remember you were always so eager to dance."
She scowled at him. "No Minister I didn't bring a partner, I had too much to do, what with having to host this party."
Severus was stood sipping his whisky and watching the dancing couples.
"She's quite a girl." Hermione said without a trace of any emotion.
"Yes she is. Quite the best treasurer I have ever had."
The silence was immense; if it had been any thicker you would have had to use a chainsaw to cut it. Hermione put down her glass and rose to leave, anything to get away from him. But as she went to walk away he had grabbed her hand.
"Surely the hostess would do the minister the honor of dancing with him?"
Hermione glared at him, her eyes almost shooting fire. But Severus didn't wait for a reply and embraced her as the waltz started. They danced to the floor and joined the other swirling figures.
Hermione's grip was tight and her eyes still fiery. As much as she hated him right now she had to admit to herself that it felt good to be held by him again. To be so close that she could smell his scent, to feel his clothes brushing her skin.
"Tell me before I waltz out of your life, before turning my back on the past, forgive my impertinent behavior, but how long do you think this pantomime can last?" Hermione burst out before she had thought about what she was saying.
Her outburst hadn't made Severus stop dancing; they continued their passionate waltz around the room.
"Tell me before I ride off in the sunset, there's one thing I never got clear, how can you claim you're our savior? When those who oppose you are stepped on, or cut up, or simply disappear?" Hermione asked with anger filling her voice.
Severus' eyes matched Hermione's in intensity.
"Tell me before you get onto your high horse, just what you expect me to do? How can one person like me, say, alter the time-honored way the game is played?" Severus asked almost spitting in anger.
People on the dance floor had noticed the fire burning between them and had started to back away from them, leaving them a space in the middle of the floor.
"but you could change it!" Hermione said as Severus spun her vigorously.
"What are my chances of honest advances? I'd say low! Better to win by admitting my sin than to lose with a halo." Severus whispered into Hermione's ear. His breath hot on her skin.
"You've never had a halo Minister! How can you be so short-sighted? To look never further than this week or next week, to have no impossible dream?"
Their eyes locked as the music reached a climax and the whole hall were watching these two ex- lovers, the Minister For Magic and the greatest mind the wizarding world had seen since Dumbledore, swirling in a cloud of anger and passion. You could almost see the electricity coursing through them and crackling like lightning.
The music stopped and they were stood there still holding each other, still staring. They dropped their hands. No one clapped, everyone too scared to move incase the powered with in the pair was unleashed on them. It seemed that people were barely breathing.
"You sold out Minister! You're not the man you used to be! You're not the man I fell in love with. Goodbye Minister."
She turned her back on him and slowly walked away. He followed her for a few steps and stopped.
"Go, if you're able, to somewhere unstable, and stay there!" he shouted at her retreating back. "Whip up your hate in some tottering state, but not here, dear!" he spat the last word.
She turned to look at him.
"Is that clear, dear?" he smirked as he said this, he had won. She had walked away.
Hermione had walked back to her rooms, fuming and fighting back tears. She wouldn't allow herself to cry until she was in the safety of her room. After the scene in the great hall, Hermione could hear the band try to lighten the mood with a polka beat.
As she closed the door to her rooms she slid down it and burst into tears on the floor. How had he turned out like this? He had been so full of conviction, so determined to make a difference to this world, but he had sold out to what was easy. Dumbledore had said that to Harry years ago, 'sometimes we have to make a choice between what is easy and what is right.'
There was a knock on her door, she scrambled up and opened it. It was Minerva looking furious.
"Well what a fiasco!" Minerva said as she entered the room
Hermione was waiting for the reprimand. It didn't come instead Minerva hugged her, causing Hermione to cry violently on the headmistresses shoulder.
"There there dear, he isn't worth all this, he has changed dear, let him go."
"Miss Granger, I have come to issue an apology." That voice again. His soft drawl that sent shivers through her body and made her heart ache.
Minerva released the sobbing girl and walked right up to Severus.
"I shall leave you to it." She said glaring at the man in the doorway and walking past him muttering to herself.
"Do you not think you have humiliated me enough tonight Minister?" Hermione said taking a tissue from her coffee table and wiping her eyes.
"Stop calling me that. You know very well what my name is!"
"Yes I do but that man is dead to e. your no longer Severus Snape, your now the Minister. The leader of the ministry, doing things I would never have thought you would do. Doing what is easy instead of what is easy."
Severus took a step into the room and closed the door.
"Well tonight wasn't easy. I did this because it was right."
"Because it was right? It was right to ask me to dance? To whisper in my ear, to argue with the passion of the man I used to know? To humiliate me in front of all my colleges and many other people, that was right was it?" she was working herself up into a frenzy again.
"No I mean it was right to come here tonight. It was right for me to see you. I know I am not the man you fell in love with, I'm not even the man I thought I was. But I can only do so much. I wish I could make all the changes I want to. All those changes I told you I would make, but it would take a long time, a hundred years maybe." He stopped and looked at Hermione. His eyes showed pain and he looked broken, not the powerful man she had seen entering the hall before. "Oh what I'd give for a hundred years, but the physical part interferes. What is the good of the strongest heart in a body that's falling apart? A serious flaw, I hope you know that."
He looked at her. It hadn't quite registered to Hermione what he had said.
"You're ill Severus?" she asked slowly.
He nodded, "yes I have been for a while. It may have been the amount of curses I endured during the days of being a spy, or perhaps the amount of potions fumes I inhaled as a teacher. Or maybe it was you leaving that broke me. All I know is I won't be around forever and I can't change the big things."
Hermione stood in the middle of the room like a little girl being told her beloved pet was ill. She still loved him. Underneath it all this was the man she loved. Not what the public saw, no this man that was stood before her right now. The man who was bearing his soul to her.
"Help me Hermione." He said simply, "help me be the man I want to be, help keep me strong."
"I still love you Severus." She said and stared cry again.
She ran towards him and threw her arms around his neck. He caught her and held so tight, like he was trying to mould them together so she would never leave him again. He could feel her sobbing into his robes. Her body shaking and quivering with the violent cries.
"I never stopped loving you Hermione."
He put his finger under her chin and raised her face to his. His looked deep into her eyes.
"I never stopped loving you." He repeated leaning in to place his lips on hers.
It was like someone had flipped a switch inside Hermione. Her hands scrambled to find the back of his head and pull him into her desperately. Her tongue was searching his mouth and her hands entwining themselves in his hair. She felt his hands on her back pulling her in closer as well. Both bodies almost becoming one.
They lost their balance and fell against the wall, lips still locked. It had been so long since they had been this close. So long since they had felt the other pressed so close. They both knew what the other was silently asking for.
Hermione pulled back from the kiss and straightened herself. Severus pushed himself off the wall.
"Shall we do this somewhere more comfortable than a stone wall?" Hermione asked as she took his hand and led him to the bedroom.
The door shut when the lovers were safely inside. The party still carried on upstairs and a gorgeous blonde girl was left searching for her date, who had mysteriously disappeared.
That night was to be a turning point for the wizarding world. Severus Snape Minister for Magic changed his stance on a lot of issues and won not only the admiration of the public, but also regained the love of the only woman he deemed good enough to be his wife. Mrs. Hermione Snape.