LbN: Hey guys! I needed something to do while I wait for contest submissions :). Hope you like the story!

The Pureblood Princess

Eight o'clock. She rolled her sleeve back down over her watch and looked at herself in the mirror. Her collar was up and her tie was undone, but she decided to leave it that way. She liked being comfortable, and since word had gotten around about Mia Hartford, no one would make the mistake of calling her a whore again.

"Accio bracelet!" she said.

A silver bracelet came zooming through the air toward her. The pendant on it had two small Bs encrusted with diamonds. She never left without it. With one last look in the mirror, she left the dormitory and walked to the common room; ready to be adored. When she entered, she immediately spied the group of people she wanted. One of the boys looked up and smiled when he saw her enter.

"Good morning Bellatrix," Rodolphus said, standing up to offer her the chair. She smirked at him and took the offered seat. Her parents could have matched her up with worse, she thought to herself. She summoned the piece of parchment that Narcissa was reading.

"You could let me finish my homework before you look it over," the fifth year said.

"Just making sure you're keeping up to Black standards," Bellarix said casually, "We wouldn't want you turning out like Andromeda, now would we?"

After a moment of reading, Bellatrix, apparently satisfied, handed the paper back to her sister. She glanced at the blonde boy beside Narcissa. Lucius Malfoy. Poor Narcissa would have trouble reigning him in, but she'd manage.

"Snape!" Lucius called across the common room.

"Oh, for God's sake, Malfoy, must we?" Bellatrix groaned.

A small first year boy emerged from the shadows and walked up to Lucius's chair.

"You called, Prefect Malfoy?" he said in a quiet but steady voice.

"Yes," Malfoy smiled, "Come and sit with us."

The junior Death Eaters, as they referred to themselves in private, had taken to inviting a few younger students to sit with them in the mornings before breakfast; mostly to terrify them into blind submission of the group's will. Severus Snape was one of these first years. Bellatrix hated him already in the second week of school, but she didn't know why. Probably because he didn't fall all over himself to cater to her and Narcissa, like the rest of the house did. She sneered at him when he walked up, but he didn't flinch. He simply took a seat on the floor next to Lucius's chair.

"That's right," Lucius said, "Pay no attention to Bellatrix. The Pureblood Princess isn't accustomed to not getting her way."

Had anyone else said this, they would have woken up in the hospital three weeks later. Probably missing various body parts. However, Narcissa's head snapped up to stare at Bellatrix, and the older Black knew to master her temper for now. Bellatrix noted the way Snape's head perked up when Lucius had used that title. It had looked like he was about to smile, as well. What was that about? She looked over at her sister, who was currently giving her future husband a death stare. She wondered briefly how many times Narcissa had saved Lucius's ass, before Rabastian, Rodolphus's younger brother, said,

"Let's go to breakfast, shall we?"

They murmered and nodded their agreement. Snape was the first to get up, but he stood respectfully to one side and let the older Slytherins pass first. Bellatrix was the last out. She stared hard at him, but he didn't redden.

That was it. She had figured out why she hated the little bastard. He wasn't afraid of her. Not properly afraid, at least. He hid whatever fear he felt when she was near him; which irked the witch to no end.

"Liked my nickname, did you?" Bellatrix asked in her softest, most dangerous voice.

Against her will, she was completely impressed by his reaction. She knew students that would piss themselves if she had confronted them in such a way. Snape stood there quietly. After a moment, when he knew that he wasn't going to win the staring match, he answered.

"I was just surprised at Prefect Malfoy's audacity, Bellatrix. I was sure that you would be angry with him for giving you a title nowhere near good enough for you."

She knew he was being cheeky, but this wasn't the time to correct it. She smiled coldly at the boy.

"Not entirely stupid, then, are you?"

With that, she exited the common room and made her way to where Rodolphus was waiting for her.

TPbP

That night, Severus made his way quietly through the common room. The junior Death Eaters, as everybody knew them, were talking quietly in a corner. He had no desire to join them tonight, however. He knew that Malfoy was just showing off and trying to scare him when he invited him over; and Bellatrix made his skin crawl. Hearing what Malfoy called her earlier had given the boy an idea, though. One that would be more appropriate for him than for her. Walking into his room, he ran to his trunk and riffled through his secondhand school things. Pulling out his Beginning Potions book, he flipped to the back and wrote in pen:

This book is the property of the Half-blood Prince.

LbN: Good? Bad? Ugly? Shoot me a review and let me know! My thinking is that Snape wrote it in all of his books, by the way...