Disclaimer: I don't own anything of Harry Potter
Note: This is a sequel to the story taking care because somebody asked for a shot where Harry tells the wizarding world about his relationship with Severus. This takes place at the graduation ball after Deadly Hallows.
Warning: Minor slash
Pairing: Harry Potter/Severus Snape.
Summary: At the Hogwarts graduation ball, Harry Potter makes a shocking and pleasant announcement.
Title: Taking care off.
Harry Potter, 7th year graduate from Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry smiled as he entered the great hall together with the other finely dressed students. The four house tables stood off to the side and laden with food so the hall could be used for dancing.
Camera's flashed and Harry grimaced. He should have known that the whole of the wizarding Brittan would come out to watch their 'hero' graduate. The teachers stood off to the side and Harry suppressed a grin when he saw the black clad sourly looking potions master.
Severus Snape was coaxed into conversation by the current headmistress professor McGonagall but to no avail it seemed. Harry unsuccessfully tried to make his way past the dance floor and towards his lover.
Yes, Severus Snape had been his lover since the end of the war roughly two years ago. Harry could see the dark eyes glancing past him but he had seen the small smile and the nod of the dark head to let him known he had been seen.
He could not really have been ignored with the dark green dress robe he was wearing. But Severus would always seek him out. Yet Harry knew that Severus expected to retire soon, after the traditional dances were over but as Harry glanced around to look for the blond woman he was sure would be here, he would make sure that it would not be an ordinary evening.
Rita Skeeter stood off to the side and she flashed a big smile his way as Harry nodded. He had promised her a dance and he would be damned if this went wrong.
Severus had always said that he would love to see the reaction of the people when they would find out that their 'hero' was shagging a greasy haired potions master and Harry would love to see the reaction as well.
"Good evening, professors." He greeted them both, finally making his way towards them. He could see a group of giggling girls standing close by and looking at him but one glare from Severus and they scattered to tackle him on a later date.
Harry sighed, he wanted nothing more then to retire for the night to Severus' rooms and simply talk with the brilliant man he had come to love. The dark eyes returned to his own and Severus seemed to relax a little bit as he always did when Harry was near.
Harry still could remember just a few short months ago when he had come down with the flu and Severus had taken care of him, comforting him and simply holding him when he was ill. The gentle fleeting touch of a hand on his lower back made his thoughts return to the present as Harry focussed his attention to professor McGonagall who was watching the exchange with a smile as she said.
"Have you decided what you will do now, Harry?"
The older witch and head of his house was friendly with him and Harry smiled as well. She had always been a strict teacher and had vowed that she would do everything in her power to ensure he would make it as a dark wizard hunter, an auror. But now Harry was not so sure if he wanted to be in the program.
"I really do not know, professor. I am thinking of perhaps doing simply nothing for a year. I…I have some unfinished business that I want to look through before I decided on a course." Harry glanced at Severus who stood to his right and the older wizard had one black eyebrow raised.
Yet Severus kept silence but Harry hoped that Severus would catch the hint. "Well, Harry, we are once again a teacher short so perhaps, if you are willing, you can stay at Hogwarts next year and teach Defence against the Dark Arts, with full payment of course. I am sure there are plenty of children who would love to be taught by the famous Harry Potter."
Harry turned back to her in surprise but then he smiled. It would take care of all his problems. He would not need to worry about a place he would stay while still being close to Severus. One look at the dark eyes and Harry could tell Severus was pleased as well. "I would love to, professor. I thank you."
Professor McGonagall merely inclined her head as the music began to play. Harry turned towards the dance floor to see the first of the couple enter. "Minerva, are you sure it is such a good idea to have Potter teach? I mean you cannot possible ask all of the innocent children to be taught by the Boy Who Defeated He Who Must Not Named." Harry turned back as Severus sneered at him.
"Really, professor Snape, I cannot expect it to be any different from the innocent children you teach. Imagine the horrors that all the children will be forced to endure when they are to be taught by professor Snape and Professor Potter." Harry cheekily replied.
Professor McGonagall rolled her eyes. She knew about their relationship and when she saw the glint in the dark eyes of the potions master, she cried out, ordering. "Enough both of you! Harry, you go make yourself useful and for you, Severus Snape, you come and dance with me."
Harry laughed softly as the elderly woman marched to the dance floor, glaring back over her shoulder and expecting Severus to follow. The older wizard drowned his drink and sat the glass down, one hand brushing Harry's lower back as the dark haired wizard leaned in to say. "I will congratulate you once we are in private…" Harry could see the glint of joy in the dark eyes before Severus walked further and offered McGonagall his arm as they begun to dance.
Harry sighed; he would give anything to be dancing with Severus like that. The dark haired wizard smiled at something the headmistress was whispering in his ear and Harry felt his heart tighten in his chest. He knew it was unfair and that Severus was his but he wanted to show it to everybody.
"Do tell me, Harry, how you feel now that you graduated and what are the Victorious One's plans for the future?" Harry closed his eyes tightly when the camera that the blond, curly haired woman brought with her. He then smiled at her, groaning softly. Rita Skeeter, the journalist who wrote for the Daily Prophet and who had tried to interview Harry, much to his annoyance every change she got.
"Do you have big plans for what I can imagine must be a bright future ahead? So who of these lovely ladies here tonight shall go home with the chosen one? Who will you ask to dance when the lovers' dance is here? The wizarding world is dying to know…." Rita smiled a big toothy smile and Harry found himself recoiling.
The lovers' dance was one of the most forward looking dances to at every graduation ball. The men in the room were to ask the ladies for a dance that they fancied. Last year Ron Weasley had asked Hermione Granger to dance. It was well known that most couples were in love and the wizarding world speculated who would ask who to marry him or her.
Harry sighed, he wished for nothing more then to ask Severus and last year the older wizard had come back in a rage to his private room, ravishing Harry soon afterwards. Harry could tell Severus had been disappointed that he had never shared this dance with anybody, refusing even the most persistent of ladies.
The song died down and Harry could see Severus sweeping McGonagall into a faster pace, eyes lingering briefly on Harry. The dark orbs were filled with regret and Harry swallowed thickly.
Rita sneered when she caught sight of the dark haired wizard and Harry frowned. It was time to put a stop to this once and for all. He would make sure that everybody knew of the love and loyalty he felt for Severus.
Still, after all Severus had done for the light side in the war, he was still hailed as a death eater and not as the hero he was. Harry knew Severus cared less about it, but Harry knew that he too would be shunned for remaining with Severus. Even now, whispers had reached him about why Harry had not stayed with Ginny Weasley.
Mrs Weasley had sent him a letter, asking why he could not be with his daughter. Even now when Harry looked around he could see Ginny standing off to the side, next to her mom who was hoping to catch his eye. He had greeted earlier this evening and he knew that was expected of him to ask Ginny for the lovers' dance but he knew that she would say no. Ginny had figured out even earlier then Harry that he liked men.
The song ended once more and the familiar tunes of the lovers' dance began to play. Harry could see the people clearing the dance floor and hesitant couples began to form, all smiling in joy.
McGonagall stood to the right and by the looks of it she had caught Severus' sleeve, enabling him to leave, much to the other wizard's annoyance. Severus was arguing with her in low tones but the headmistress' eyes were fixed upon Harry.
Harry could feel the room holding its breath, waiting for their 'hero' to enter the dance floor. He could see Mrs Weasley arguing with Ginny who refused to move.
Taking a deep breath, seeing McGonagall's nod as he finally took a step forward. It was now or never and while Harry knew that Severus might hate him for it but he had to take the change.
People began to whisper loudly when Harry approached both teachers. Harry had to bite the inside of his cheek to stop himself from laughing out loud; did they really think he was going to ask Minerva McGonagall to dance?
Finally Harry held out his hand, noticing how Severus froze in shock as the older wizard turned to face the boy who lived. "Please?" Harry found himself whispering, knowing that desperation must be showing in his eyes.
The room had gone silent, people staring in shock when they saw their 'hero' asking a former death eater to dance the most important dance in the wizarding world. Yet Harry only had eyes for the dark ones that bore into his own. Severus still stood shock still, not noticing how the headmistress lifted the charm down on his sleeve.
Noting showed in the dark eyes and Harry began to fear he had made a grave mistake as angry whispers broke out. The black eyes then rose to meet his own as Severus whispered in a low voice. "Are you truly prepared, Potter?"
Harry knew what Severus was asking him. He would have to face them all, defend himself and Severus from their wrong opinions but Harry would have it no other way. It was time to show the world that Harry Potter loved Severus Snape. Severus would not tolerate any regret and if Harry was not sure now, then they had no change.
Not daring to hope or to breathe, Harry only gave a mute nod but when he saw the warmth returning to the dark eyes, his hand was suddenly gripped tightly and he was led to the dance floor.
Harry knew he should be leading but suddenly his knees had turned to pudding as he felt one arm tighten around his waist and he was pulled against the taller dark haired wizard. Severus held his eyes as he began to sway, leading them in slow circles. Harry looked around for a moment as he said in a raspy voice. "They are staring at us…"
"Focus upon me, Harry. They matter not. This is about us." The soothing dark voice told him and happily Harry obeyed. The small smile on the hardened face made Harry weak all over.
"I was going to give you your graduation gift later but since we are both here and the moment is right, I guess there is no point in delaying." Severus' tone was quite final and Harry fought the urge to drop his head.
He could not form words, fearing the worst. Perhaps Severus had bought him a house and he would live there, far away from his lover. It took so much strength to continue to stare into the dark eyes as Severus smiled for a moment as he asked. "Marry me?"
"What?" Harry managed to choke out, wondering if he had perhaps heard wrong.
The black eyes widened but then Severus sneered as he said. "Very well then, since I love you and you obviously hold some affection for me, I guess we better take the big plunge if you are willing. I think, Harry that you will not find any other who loves you like I do or that you will find somebody who you love as much as you love me, so I am asking you if you will marry me."
"Yes." Harry could barely say anything else as he began to nod. He suddenly felt giddy and fought hard to suppress the sudden laughing fit. Yet the grin that spread across his face could not be denied.
"Good, then you will soon be known as Potter Snape." Severus pulled Harry closer but the younger wizard did not take the bait as he asked cheekily.
"How would you have asked the question if we had not been dancing?"
"Excuse me?" Severus pulled back slightly to look the younger male in the eye.
Gently nudging the taller wizard, Harry softly said. "If we had been in private and you would have asked me, would you have used candles and stuff like that or simply…? Well how would you go about it?"
"Jeez Potter, the questions you ask. Very well then…" Severus sighed a long suffering sigh but Harry could see the joy and amusement in the dark eyes. "I would simply walk over to couch, kiss you senselessly and then order you to marry me. Is that enough to satisfy your foolish Gryffindor romantic notions?"
"I suppose." Harry softly mused.
"You should know by now that I don't do romantic, Harry. The ceremony is going to be attended only by slytherins of course and the decorations in green and silver…" Severus smirked as Harry did something that shut the older wizard up quite effectively. He kissed the thin lips, arms wrapped tightly around Severus' neck and losing himself in their heated kiss as Severus smiled into their kiss, opening his mouth slightly.
Finally Harry pulled away looking flustered as Severus appeared quite normal, only the tell tale small specks of colour in the normally pale cheeks and yet Severus smiled, nudging Harry gently and saying in his soft voice. "Foolish brat."
The familiar nickname was laced with affection and Harry knew the cameras had caught their kiss quite well and soon it would be all over the newspapers in the morning with no doubt the headline, "Hero chooses former death eater at lovers' dance. Has Harry Potter gone crazy?"
But he did not care as the tune ended. He felt Severus' hand tighten around his own and knew that soon they would be able to slip away but before he could so much as smile at the camera, Severus called out. "I tell you to take your pictures now for there will be no such time at the bonding ceremony. Harry will answer all of your questions now."
With a last sneer and a quick squeeze of the suddenly sweaty hand within his own, Severus left his lover to fend for himself. When he neared professor McGonagall, she put a hand on his shoulder as both watched the new DADA professor trying to answer the questions from the crowd. "I think it is best that we tell them that Harry is the new DADA professor in the morning so that he has some time to get is all right." The soft comment from the headmistress made Severus laugh but when he looked at the green eyes man that stood before them all, he felt proud. He nodded at Harry when the younger man looked at him and when he saw the smile on the face he loved; he knew it had been worth all the pain just to see the smile directed at him and as he finally slipped away, he knew that Harry would soon follow and that was all that mattered to him.
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