Hi all. I am taking a quick break from my other story in order to free up some ideas. This is one that has been floating there for awhile but I am not really sure where it will go yet. It is open for suggestions. I hope you like.
How the devil had he allowed the old coot to talk him into this? Severus Snape grumbled to himself as he strode down to the dungeons of Hogwarts. The old man had some kind of a spell over everyone he met. He could get a man to do anything, even this. Severus descended upon a group of students who scrambled away at the sight of his menacing scowl. He was in no mood for the rotten little brats. His only saving grace was that he had no more classes today.
He slammed the door to his office and strode to his desk. Here he threw himself into his chair and flung his head back massaging his temples. His mind wandered back to his latest conversation with the Headmaster.
"What is it now Albus?" Severus crossed his arms and glared at the Headmaster.
Albus Dumbledore gave a small smile from behind steepled fingers. "I have an assignment for you my dear boy." Severus scowled at the thought. Albus had a smile that meant it was an assignment Severus would not like. Because of this Severus' tone was more curt than normal.
"And what, pray tell, is this assignment and why was it so urgent that you felt the need to pull me from class to discuss it?"
Albus grew serious. There was no sign of the usual twinkle that seemed to follow the man around everywhere he went. The more Severus scowled, the more pronounced that damn twinkle became. The absence of the twinkle was actually very disconcerting. "It has come to my attention that a young student may be in a bit of trouble at home."
"And what has this to do with me?"
"It is a child of great interest. It has come to my attention that he may not be treated as well as we would like. I want you to go in and discover the truth of the matter. We cannot afford to have rumors flying about this boy. I have been told that if I do not send someone to investigate that this matter will be taken to the ministry of magic." At the last comment Severus heard a small smile in the voice of the Headmaster and the twinkle returned. "It seems that the person I have in charge of watching this particular child has become very protective as of late, but due to the circumstance, she cannot do much."
Severus merely waiting for the old man to stop. "And what exactly do you want me to do?"
"You will take next week to investigate. You are a spy after all. I think it is something you will be able to handle with relative ease." Severus ignored the compliment. Sometimes getting the Headmaster to get to the point was irritating. There was never a direct answer to any question. There was obviously something he was not going to like about this.
"You want me to leave in the middle of the year for this? Who will cover my classes?"
Albus chuckled. "While I am not nearly as experienced as you my dear boy, I am still a fair hand at potion brewing. It would not be considered an impossibility that I could cover your classes. Knowing you, I am sure you already have lesson plans for the next month all ready."
Severus snorted. The next two months were planned actually. He had many personal projects going so he tried to plan as far ahead as he dared so that he had more time to himself. He did not particularly like teaching, but his advanced classes could be quite stimulating. Besides, what use would he be to Albus if not here at Hogwarts? Severus finally sighed and rolled his eyes. He uncrossed his arms and leaned back in the chair.
"Alright Albus. Who is the child?"
"A Mr. Harry Potter."
Severus bolted upright, a look of pure fury on his face. "What? No, no no no no no no no. I absolutely refuse. I have no time to run around for a week catering to the demands of James Potters' spawn. I have no desire to do so and I will not. Before you even say anything, I know I agreed to protect him. That does not mean I will be his babysitter for a week because some crazy old bat thinks he is in danger."
After his little tirade Severus sat back. After a few deep breaths, he smoothed his hair back and glared down his large nose at Albus. Albus sat quietly watching him without flinching. "Finished?"
Severus nodded feeling slightly embarrassed by his outburst. "Well then allow me to continue. Mrs. Figg has been watching Harry since he was placed there six years ago. She has come to me before with concerns over Harry's health, but with nothing to back it up I did not want to intrude upon their lives. I was not willing to cause an upheaval for something that was speculation with no proof. Recently she noticed a slight change in Harry and he has been walking funny while going to school. He has not been outside as much and he rarely talks. Because of these concerns, I have decided it is time to investigate. I want you to go to check on him and I want you to watch him for more than a day or so."
"Why not Minerva or you? Surely you are not suggesting that I am the best person to do this. Not with my history." Severus decided that reason was the only way to get out of this.
"Simple. Minerva would do wonderfully with the assignment. However she did not like the arrangement in the first place. She would use this as an excuse to remove him within the first day. You however will not be so quick to remove him because of your history. There are wards for his safety. We know he is protected from Voldemort now we must make sure he is protected from his family. As to your other suggestion, I cannot go. I do not want the ministry to get even a hint of what we are doing. If it is suggested by anyone that Harry is in danger from his relatives, it will be a feeding frenzy with a small boy in the middle. If I leave for a week unexpectedly they will become suspicious."
Severus raised an eyebrow. "But it will not be suspicious if I leave for a week?"
Dumbledore smiled. "Ah, but my dear Severus, no one will know you are gone. I will be playing both parts. A little polyjuice potion and I think I will be able to pull of the part well enough."
Severus snorted at the part. "You will ruin my reputation in a day."
The conversation had continued and in the end Severus had agreed. How did the old man do it? Even the most cunning Slytherin could leave doing the old man's bidding. It was strange to say the least. Severus heaved a sigh and began to prepare for next week's little trip.
That is just the start. I know it is short but I want to see how it is received before adding a ton more. Oh and as a warning, (especially if you have read my other story), I love cliff hangers so be prepared. I do make it up by updating quickly however. You usually do not have to wait more than a day or two. Hope you like it.