Chapter Nine: The Start of a New Life:
Severus stood before the mirror finishing buttoning his high collared inner robes and reached for his loose outer academic robes and drew the heavy black robes over his shoulders and ran his long fingers over the sleeves of his robes where the velvet stripes in black like his robes had been sewn on. He thought it a bit embarrassing he was being fussed over like this. Had not it been enough he had gotten an Order of Merlin First Class? Now the Wizarding world wanted to give him a doctorate in potions! They thought it was time he went from potions master to doctor, a rank that even Slughorn as good as he had been never had got! In fact there were few potions doctors in the world and he was about to be put into those ranks. Moody slumped up and grunted in approval at the young wizard, a wizard who he had taken under his wing as he liked him, even if he was annoying.
"So ye ready then?" Moody asked him.
"Yes, Merlin how on earth do I even come close to earning this honor?" Severus grumbled.
"Well ye did come up with a vaccine fer Lycanthropy, a chew form of the Wolfsbane and ye just came up wi' a cure fer Vampirism. Ye deserve the honor."
"I am a death eater, I bare the his mark on my arm." Severus said quietly.
"But it's faded now."
"No, just less detailed, only the outline of the skull and snake remain, the scales, skull detail are gone." Severus said.
"Good, now let's go, they are waiting fer ye." Moody said.
Severus walked out of the room and saw Poppy first, she smoothed down his outer robes and smiled at him. He walked into the room where a crowd of wizards and witches had gathered and for a moment he wanted to run. He saw Dumbledore and McGonagall waiting while doctor Jigger stood waiting to give him the degree he had earned. She was a small woman with skin the color of a walnut, sparkling violet eyes and hair white as snow. She was clad in robes of dove gray under her own academic robes and she smiled as her taller college came forward and bowed.
"Severus Tobias Snape, you are here to receive your doctorate for your outstanding work within the magical community. You have shown rare talents in making the vaccine for Lycanthropy and the improvements on the Wolfsbane which has made life for those werewolves who wish easier in the Wizarding world. If you are willing to take the pledge you will receive your doctorate."
"I am ready." Severus said stepping forward.
"Will you as a doctor of potions continue to help as you are able the Wizarding world with your potions?"
"I will." Severus replied.
"Then take this and become a doctor of potions." Doctor Jigger said.
A metal was placed around his neck and he was handed the sheepskin that showed he was now a doctor of potions. He felt overwhelmed at the honor and bowed to her and turned as applause filled the room. Just a week before he had been released from the hospital wing and was honored with his Order of Merlin and a feast and now a doctorate in potions! Another feast was set up in his honor in Hogwarts and as there were so many who wished him well in the magical community the students had to give over the great hall for the evening. They did not mind at all, they were glad for Severus Snape and would have given up several weeks worth of eating in the great hall if he asked for it.
Taylor looked at Severus who was sitting looking down at his tea while Harry finished the tale. She was impressed, not only had Severus survived two attempts on his life, well the first was him draining his magic the second was a terrible curse. He was here now alive and well and of course she knew about the Order of Merlin first class and the doctorate. She was happy for Severus and happy that England was no longer at war. Oh sure there were still pockets of death eaters the world over but they were far and few between and specially trained warlocks not Aurors hunted them down and killed them leaving the Aurors free to do the job of policeman .
"So that is how you got away and are here now." Taylor replied, "so what are you going to do now?"
"Teach for a bit more then maybe travel the world, there is much to see." Severus replied. "I want to get married but well…"
"He is scared she will say no but I know Professor Burbage will not." Harry smirked.
"Brat don't you dare take liberties with me!" Severus said softly but the small smile gave him away.
"Oh come on Severus she loves you!" Harry said.
"Well if you do decide to get married I think my husband and I would like to be there." Taylor said.
"Indeed?" Severus said narrowing his eyes at Taylor.
"Of course, you are a good friend you know, just as long as you try to do one thing."
"What is that?"
"Try to be nice to Alastor and stop calling him horrible names!"
Severus glared at her but knew that once again Taylor would get the last word. She was a woman and as such he had to allow her the last word, this time and this time only.