Hi! For those of you that enjoyed Internal, Infernal, this is the sequel. But don't worry about it if you haven't read it, I'm trying to make this work as a stand-alone piece. But for more background on Raphaela and what's happened so far between her and Severus, just check out the first one.
Enjoy! (I hope)
Chapter One: Juicy Sweet
He wasn't perfect, but he was perfect to me. Okay, that was cheesy. What I mean is, all the things that you could hate about someone are the things you love, just because it's him. Like, I loved that he had to take five minutes of mental preparation before he could tell me he loved me. And I loved that he always woke up exactly at six, even if sometimes I wanted to stab him in the neck for waking me. I loved to watch him snap and shout at a first-year, probably making them cry, and not just because it meant I could tell him off. I just… I just loved him, everything about him, from his weird hair (that he point-blank refused to let me do anything with, even though I could make it look so adorable) all the way down to his boring shoes.
"We've had this conversation before, Raphaela."
Okay. So it was six in the morning and I was awake. But to be fair, I'd had seven cups of coffee the previous day and it wasn't my fault that I couldn't get to sleep. But I had the feeling that that wasn't what Severus was talking about, lying in his weirdly rigid sleeping pose with still-closed eyes. I had the feeling that it was because I'd happened to be looking at him when I'd gone off on my tangent, and he always seemed to know when I was watching him. It was kind of eerie, actually.
"I was not watching you sleep," I said defensively. He smiled slightly and opened his eyes, staring at the ceiling. He had such pretty eyes, when they weren't full of intense rage. "I was just glancing at you, then I started thinking about… well, it doesn't matter what I was thinking about. The point is that I didn't do it on purpose."
"I'm sure you didn't," he said, sounding completely unconvinced. "You do know that it's incredibly creepy, though?"
"Well, maybe you're just so wonderful that I can't help but be entranced," I said, hoping blatant flattery could get him off the topic. I really hadn't meant to stare. At any rate, it seemed my flattery had worked. He didn't respond positively, though I hadn't expected him to. He did exactly what I'd expected, which was turning bright red and looking incredibly uncomfortable.
"Er… yes. Well, be that as it… well… I have a lot of things to do." He pushed away his blankets and stood up, still looking uncomfortable.
"That won't work on me anymore," I said, laughing. "I know you don't have anything to do, and neither do I. Now I've been awake for about twenty-four hours, and I'm bored, because you insisted on spending the last eight of those hours asleep, instead of having fun. What do you have to say for yourself?"
He'd lost his uncomfortable look and instead looked mildly exasperated as he stared at me. "Sweet Merlin's beard, Raphaela, you have the hormones of a teenager."
Okay, so now it was my turn to turn red and be embarrassed. "I didn't actually mean it like that, Severus. Though it's lovely that that was your first thought." Ha! I'd made him get all embarrassed and red again. The torch was passed.
"Oh. Well then. I suppose it's time to… get ready then. Classes will begin soon." He started to move to the bathroom, but I quickly kicked off the blankets and ran forwards, jumping on his back and wrapping my arms around his shoulders.
"I don't think so," I said, giggling slightly. "Not now that you've put the idea in my head."
"The idea for what?" he asked, before twitching slightly. "Oh! Well, then. In that case, I suppose I have nobody to blame but myself." His tone was aloof, but I could see that he was smiling. I had a good feeling about this day. It was a good feeling that extended all the way through breakfast, the first couple of classes, and didn't even dissipate at lunch, when the only thing on offer was steak and kidney pie and some gross-looking casserole that I didn't feel up to touching. I just had to content myself with trying to drink my body weight in pumpkin juice. I wondered vaguely how much I'd have to drink before I threw up when I heard a voice from the right side of me, a side I admittedly hadn't paid much attention to in my time at Hogwarts. How could I have, when I had Severus on my left? At any rate, it was speaking to me now.
"Why are you drinking so much pumpkin juice?" It was the voice of tiny Professor Flitwick, and he looked at once amused and mildly concerned. "Have you been afflicted with the Hex of Unending Parch?" Hmm. No, I didn't think I had. Or had I? I might've been. Then again, why would anyone want to curse me? I was lovely. No, I was pretty sure I hadn't been hexed.
"I don't think I've been cursed, no," I said cheerfully, refilling my goblet to near-overflowing. "I just want to see how much I can drink before I throw up."
"A worthy cause," came two separate voices. One was the laughing voice of Flitwick, the other was a dry, sarcastic voice from my left. Bloody Severus, always belittling my fun-times. Just because he could tolerate eating weird casserole and organ pie. I laughed at their synchrony for a moment before turning back to my pumpkin juice, drinking it all in one go and earning peculiar looks from the members of staff. Well, they just didn't have my vision. I longed for a world where… well, maybe my juice-drinking efforts didn't have a definite purpose. But I really had nothing better to do, and if I drank enough of it, I'd probably get so many vitamins that I'd never get the flu again. Oh, who's that knocking at my door? Is it the complete and utter awesome police, here to arrest me for my complete and utter awesomeness? I think it might be.
"So, Severus," came McGonagall's voice from two seats down. She had some pie on her plate but it was untouched. She was probably as impressed at the food as I was. I considered challenging her to a juice-drinking competition, but had to put it out of my mind when she began to speak once more. "How is Raphaela doing under your tutelage? It's been half the school year and I hadn't even thought to check up on it."
I began refilling my goblet, but then paused. These silly goblets only held so much juice, and there was so much readily available in the huge jug that I was holding. It would be so much more convenient to cut out the middleman. This in mind, I began to drink straight from the jug, wondering if I could drink it all in one go.
"Well, as you can see, I haven't managed to teach her the basics of dignity," I heard Severus replying, in a tone that seemed both abrasive and amused. "Raphaela, put that down. People are staring." I shook my head slightly, still drinking from the jug. I heard a small bump and the sound of Severus sighing, and I could just imagine him, elbows on the table, his face in his hands in exasperation. Finally, I had to breathe, so I put the now near-empty jug back on the table and grinned. Severus was posed exactly as I'd imagined. He could be so predictable sometimes.
"Minerva!" I cried, pointing at McGonagall. "Juice drinking competition! Starting… NOW!"
She didn't move. She just stared at me like I'd gone mental. What was the sugar content in this juice anyway? Must have been pretty high, I was feeling happy as a pig in poop. Severus turned from the table and looked at me, then snorted with laughter. "Raphaela, you've got pumpkin juice all over your face."