Eight Years Later

"Dad," said the boy reproachfully, "we're in public."

"Oh, sorry," said the man, reaching out for a last rumple of the boy's messy hair. "I do forget myself sometimes."

The boy groaned as a pair of girls turned back for another look and giggled behind their hands. "Wonderful."

"Looks like you have a couple of fans, Harrykins."

"Do not call me that!" exclaimed the boy, horrified. "Look, don't you think it's bad enough Dad's teaching and you're in Hogsmeade... can't I ride the train by myself like a normal First Year?"

The man sighed. "'Fraid not, Harry."

"It's not fair," said the boy, pursing his lips.

"Look, there's Ron and Fred and George."

"Where?" The boy pushed his glasses up and looked around, quickly spotting his friends. Mrs. Weasley had brought Ginny, too.

"Go say hello, and then you and Ron can find a compartment. I'll be along."

"You're not going to sit with us?" asked the boy, aghast.

"I'll try to find an empty compartment in the same car."

Only slightly mollified, the boy set off toward his friends, leaving the man to see to his trunk.

"Good-bye, Harry, and I hope you have a lovely start of the year."

The boy glanced around quickly before giving the man a half-hug. "Bye, Dad."

"Be good. Mind your teachers."

"I will. Really."

"Remember what I told you about the Headmaster."

Harry frowned, but nodded.

"Remember, also, that you have powerful allies at the school. Should you ever need help --"

"I'll go to Dad, of course," Harry said, tossing his head. "Or that teacher you told me about."

"Professor Snape, Harry."

"Yes, him. Oh, look, there's Ron -- I have to go!"

The man kept silent watch until the boats and carriages had all gone, ferrying their precious cargo safely to the castle.

With a final heavy sigh, he started down to road to Hogsmeade, and home.

"Percy, who is that teacher sitting next to my D-- I mean, next to Professor Black?"

Percy looked up from his book. "Hmm? Oh, him. That's Professor Severus Snape. He teaches Potions."

"Severus..." Harry repeated under his breath. "Why does that sound familiar?"

Professor Snape looked up suddenly, his eyes somehow finding Harry's across the crowded and noise-filled room.

"Ow..." He rubbed his forehead.

"You all right, mate?"

"Yeah, Ron, I'm fine."

When he looked up again, Professor Snape had looked away, speaking now with a pale-faced woman wearing a high head-dress adorned with jewels that shone and sparkled in the candlelight.

Harry turned back to his plate heaped with delicious food, speared a piece of sausage on his fork, and tried to tune in to the cheerful chatter around him.

His last thought about the Potions professor was that he looked as though his name fit him well.

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I hope you enjoyed this story, including the Crapilogue (because every story should have one. I know it doesn't hold a candle to HP:DH, but alas, the bar was set too high.).

Chapters 3 and 4 will be eventually rewritten to be as much from Harry's point of view as they can be. I could not pull it together in my original attempt, but I recognize that the last two chapters are weak and the changing POV is partly to blame (but not completely... and the crapilogue is supposed to be crappy).

There may be a sequel, but only after I complete my other stories. If there is a sequel, it will be a Severitus or Sevitus (depending on which works).