What I Want My Words to Do to You
or
A Series of Extracts Belonging to the Epistolary Courtship of Hermione Granger and Severus Snape, with Suitable Additions of Edifying Thoughts and Actions
by Severus Snape and Hermione Granger
edited by Lm. Samiko

1st Posting

-

Dear sir,

Hmm... That is not exactly the way a letter like this ought to begin, which I assure you, is something I realize fully. However, I do want you to read it and, knowing you as I do, I realize that egregious flattery, proclamations of undying love and/or anatomically detailed descriptions of sex are more likely to make you throw this letter into the waste bin. Besides which, you wouldn't believe any of that tunnut nonsense, anyway.

And yes, I am rambling. You have that effect on me, even in print, it seems. Still, it is better than standing in front of you, babbling incoherently. I have no doubt you would verbally shred me into little pieces and that would be intolerable. I would be forced to claw you back in self-defense and we should get no farther than we are now. In a letter, neither of us is on the spot and therefore, our better sides may be presented.

Don't get me wrong; I fully expect you to flay me in your return letter, if there is one. But I can deal with your sarcasm and wit much better when it's not being thrown at my head like a Muddling Hex. And please note, if you do not answer this letter, I shall be forced to take a more direct and very much unpleasant (for you) approach. It would be very public and very messy, I assure you. And I have the imagination to pull it off.

Threats aside, I would like to say that I admire you greatly. I have long noticed your wit (which is appreciable when directed at someone else), as well as your intelligence, diligence, and discipline (by which I mean personal, rather than inflicted). I would very much appreciate a chance to know you better than I do now, to determine whether this attraction is merely that or something more and, of course, to see whether you might be interested in me. On any level. I would add, that for the time being, letters are sufficient; I would not ask you to suffer my presence until you feel ready. Which, I imagine, would involve the selection of half a dozen prime hexes and curses. Just be warned: by that point, I should have at least a dozen prepared.

Yours sincerely,
ZS.

-

Dear madam (or so I assume),

You will no doubt be pleased to know that your letter has found its way into the pile of burnt love-letters that I accumulate every week. They make quite a lovely, if uselessly brief, blaze. If you ever do show up on my doorstep, be assured I have no less than one hundred hexes and curses prepared for that eventuality; there are too many witches already trying to assault me. However, I admit that you are the first to display some modicum of intelligence, however diminished by this current situation. I dread to think of what desperate circumstances drove you to this course of action. I have now answered your letter; I can only assume you are satisfied. If I hear from you again, I shall be forced to take more drastic measures.

Professor Severus C. Snape, MP. MDA. OoM. 1st class.

-

Well, he had written her a reply, which was more than she had expected, and it consisted of more than "bugger off," which was a hell of a lot more than she had expected. Encouraged, Hermione picked up a quill and applied it to a fresh sheet of parchment.

-

Dear sir,

Thank you for your considerate reply. Having been told I have some intelligence leads me to believe we have something to start with. It is very heartening, though I know that was not your intent. And to clarify that point, the current situation has affected my sanity, not my intelligence, and so you may expect reasonably intelligent letters from yours truly. If you want proof, I shall be happy to enclose a sample of my Arithmancy research; I'm sure Professor Vector will be equally happy to explain it for you. And, for your information, the 'desperate circumstances' you assume are only that I have yet to find any man, handsome, intelligent, or otherwise, whom I can converse with intelligently. For some reason, any man who sees me tends to focus on my cleavage within .2 milliseconds and forget the fact that either of us have brains. Of course, whether said man had one to begin with is debatable. They usually don't. Finding someone who does would be a relief. I imagine you have the same type of problem. I mean that the witches who pursue you focus on the OoM medal you no doubt have pinned to your chest, rather than noting the fact you have a brain. Not to mention taste; I can't imagine you wanting to have anything to do with that sort of woman. Your tolerance for stupidity is about the same as mine. Tell me, how long do you wait before you hex them? I give mine about two warnings on average. I envy you, though. At least they're admiring your bravery and skill, while mine are focused solely on secondary sex characteristics. I have my own medals and most of the time they're ignored in favor of the illusion that I will cook and clean.

I cook and clean for one person: me. Anyone else can bloody well get house elves.

Ah, yes. Before I sign off, I would like to point out that I have taken every precaution possible to prevent your so-called 'drastic measures.' And I would remind you that you do not know who I am or where I live. I, however, know exactly what you look like (which you should consider as a factor when you determine my sincerity) and I know the exact coordinates of where you live down to the second. But don't worry; I still like you.

Yours sincerely,
ZS.

PS - By the way, I thought the full list of titles was a nice touch. And how is the experimentation going on the Smaragdina potion?

-

Dear madam,

I have no need of Vector to 'explain' anything to me. As for the rest, it is none of your bloody business.

Bugger off,
Professor Severus C. Snape, MP. MDA. OoM. 1st class.

-

Well, she couldn't say she hadn't expected it. Nor could she say she hadn't expected the five different tracking spells, the three time-delayed hexes, or the particularly ingenious 'bug' spell. She'd disabled every single one, after all. The man had imagination. And intelligence, ingenuity, long, slender fingers... Hermione shook her head and applied herself to concocting a suitable revenge. Had she mentioned the fact that she loved a challenge?

-
At precisely twelve noon, when everyone was assembled for lunch, a Howler arrived. It was addressed to Minerva, who opened it, and immediately flew over to Severus.

"NAUGHTY, NAUGHTY, DEAR SEVVIE! YOU'RE SUCH A BAD BOY!" It was followed by the sound of a flamboyant smooch before it reduced itself to ribbons.

The flirtatious voice alone was enough to make Severus Snape's insides writhe in humiliation. While the other professors snorted in laughter, he continued stone-faced through lunch, planning revenge. An ordinary letter arrived.

-
Dear sir,

I warned you. And you got off lightly this time.

And I still like you.

ZS.

-

Dear madam,

What part of 'bugger off' is so difficult for you to understand, pray tell? I revoke any previous positive comments I may inadvertently have made.

Professor Severus C. Snape, MP. MDA. OoM. 1st class.

-

It was just as well that Hermione opened the note in the same manner she would have used on a volatile potion; the resulting mess took her an hour to clean off the glass screen and would have turned her a brilliant shade of blue with screaming orange hair. Rather like a Celt seen during an LSD trip. Now there was an idea...

-
Once again, a letter arrived during lunch. It looked ordinary, save that the stupid owl dropped it right on his plate. Still, Snape performed every check he could think of before setting it aside to open later. He never noticed the amount of white powder that had transferred and dissolved into the curry.

He much regretted it later, when a variety of unlikely visions were parading themselves in front of his eyes and he uttered one of the most clich├ęd phrases known to man: "Ooh, look at all the pretty colours!" He regretted it even more when he heard it repeated to him dozens of times over the next week. And when he finally opened the letter to read:

-
Didn't think to look for Muggle poisons, did you? ZS.

-
Now alerted to what, or rather whom, he was dealing with, Snape's efforts at retaliation improved. He and his mystery correspondent (he frothed at the mouth if you called her a 'secret admirer') traded hexes, potions, curses and jibes back and forth regularly. Much of his personal time was devoted to thinking up new ways to get her back. To his credit, Hermione's protections failed several times; she spent time speaking in Cat, blown up like a giant balloon (though without the lighter-than-air properties), and, much to her chagrin, brilliant blue with screaming orange hair. She had assumed he wouldn't repeat a trick.

All in all, the Owl Post was right pissed with both of them.
-
-
-
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --

Here's another offering! I was going to wait until my previewers gave me an opinion, but they're dragging their feet, so I thought I'd start posting before I become AU.

On the title: The main title is from a PBS documentary that has absolutely nothing to do with this fic, being about things that are written by women in prison. The subtitle is what happens when I read too many Victorian novels. ;

tunnut - contraction of the phrase 'two knut'

I hope you've enjoyed! -- Lm. Samiko