Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author.
Chapter 6 - Professor Snape
The Potions classroom was just as it had always been.
The shelves were all orderly and looked as though they might have been cleaned recently – most likely by a wayward student that was being punished. The cupboards were neat, and the ingredients in the storeroom all appeared to be well stocked. But what else was to be expected when none other than Severus Snape was presiding over the class as the substitute professor. Hermione had to say that she was as impressed with her husband as she had ever been. While she was known to use a different approach in her classroom, she was no less strict than Severus ever was in her days as a student.
It was fifteen minutes until breakfast was due to begin in the Great Hall, and Hermione had gone down to the dungeons to see her classroom for the first time since she had gone on maternity leave. The twins were with Severus that morning in his office, and he had promised to bring them both down to the hall with him at breakfast time. Once she had satisfied her curiosity about her classroom, she left the Dungeon and made her way slowly back up to the Great Hall. She took the staff side-door and saw that Severus was already there with Luciana in his arms, while Filius to his left was holding Sebastian.
Both babies seemed to be content with the persons' holding them. Smiling, she walked to her seat on the right side of her husband and sat down to enjoy her breakfast.
'Did you find everything the way you prefer?' Severus asked immediately as she seated herself.
She smiled at him. 'Yes, everything was perfect,' she answered. 'Thank you for taking such good care of my classroom and students.'
'It was the very least I could do to repay you for all that you have done for me, my love,' he murmured softly into her ear, causing her to blush.
Clearing her throat softly, she held out her arms to take Luciana from him. 'Let me hold her while you have some breakfast,' she said, lifting her little girl out of his arms and into hers. Unlike her, Severus had yet to master the talent of eating whilst holding a baby.
'Thank you, pet,' he said as he piled his plate with toast and eggs.
Hermione ate some fruit and finished quickly so that she could take the twins down to the dungeons with her afterwards to feed them. She and Severus both stood and left the table together, each holding one of their children and wished the rest of the staff a good day. Once safely ensconced in her office, Severus locked the door and cradled Luciana while Hermione parted her robe. Opening her blouse and moving aside the fabric of her bra, she allowed the hungry Sebastian to latch onto her nipple and feed. Once he had drank his share, Severus relieved her of him and went about the business of burping while she fed Luciana from her other breast.
When she was finished, she shifted her clothing back into place and closed her robe, but not before she caught her husband leering at her exposed breast.
'Severus, you can't look at me like that when I'm just about to teach a class,' she chastised with a small laugh at that sad look her gave her.
'But your breasts are so lovely,' he said with a pout that made her laugh even more. 'Fine, but you will not deny me later, my dear.'
She sauntered up to him as she patted Luciana on the back to burp her, and leaned up to kiss him on the lips gently. 'I can guarantee you that I will not deny you tonight,' she said huskily, letting him see the desire in her eyes.
Severus groaned and frowned at her. 'I'm going to have to get back to my office before I ravage you right here and now,' he said, taking Luciana from her as well. 'I had a cot set up in my office so that I can work and watch over them.'
'That was very sweet of you,' she said, glad that he had taken the initiative. She liked the house elves, but she just wasn't so sure she wanted a one to raise her children while she was working. 'I'll come up after this class is over to feed them again. I have a free double period.'
Severus left the dungeons and she sat in her office, mentally preparing herself for her first class since she had gone on leave. At exactly nine am, she went to the classroom door and opened it to find her second year Gryffindor-Slytherin class waiting for her quietly. She looked over to see Megan standing there with a huge smile on her face, then beckoned them inside. As they seated themselves, Hermione tapped her wand against the chalk board making the class notes appear.
'Welcome class,' she said with a smile.
'Welcome back, Professor Snape,' a young Gryffindor who sat beside Megan said. 'It wasn't the same without you here.'
'I take it you mean that it was different with the Headmaster teaching classes,' Hermione asked.
'We missed you,' Helena Smith, a Slytherin girl, piped up from the back. 'Headmaster Snape was very different to you in class.'
Hermione laughed inwardly. Apparently all of his years as the Headmaster had done nothing to gentle Severus' teaching technique. 'Well now that I am back, who can tell me where the Headmaster has taught you up to in your text books?' she asked.
Two hours later, as the last of her second-years left the classroom; she closed up her class schedule and took it to her office, locking the doors before tossing some Floo powder into the fireplace and stepping in. She Flooed straight up to Severus' office and walked out, dusting off her robes slightly as she did. What she found was his desk sitting empty while the man himself was over in the corner with an armchair pulled up to the cot, his two children both in his arms, with a book on his lap as he read to them.
'And you're sure that it's a good idea for you to be taking care of them during the day?' she asked as she approached.
He looked up at her, startled for a moment before he smiled sheepishly. 'Well Luciana began crying, which set off Sebastian also,' he told her. 'I thought reading to them might calm them down, and apparently it worked.'
'It was a very sweet sight to walk in on,' she admitted, walking over and relieving him of Luciana.
'How was your first class?' he asked, crooking a finger and summoning another armchair over for her to sit in.
'They were wonderful,' she said with a grin. 'Apparently everyone has missed me and they all think you are a harsh and overly demanding taskmaster. Well, all except for Megan of course.'
'She is the star of that class,' Severus said at the mention of their adoptive daughter. 'Of course, Helena Smith shows some promise as well.'
Hermione nodded. 'I had noticed that today. I was thinking that I could pair her and Megan together in class. It seems such a shame to have them working with others not quite as good as them who will only hold them back at a slower pace.'
'It might be a good idea. It might even help to promote a little inter-house unity early on in their schooling,' Severus mused.
Hermione smiled at the contemplative look on her husband's face that she loved so much. Looking down at the baby in her arms, she parted her robes once more and with a wave of her arm, the curtains were drawn on all of the portraits in the room. She heard the muffled indignation from all of the former Head's of school as she did so but ignored them in favor of freeing her breast.
'Lucy, darling,' she said softly to the baby. 'How would you like to have something to eat?'
The baby gurgled and smacked on her little fist, a look of delight on her face as Hermione offered her a breast to suckle. Severus chuckled at the sight, his dark eyes devouring the sight before him. It was such a beautiful thing to watch his wife feeding their children. Not to mention arousing as hell. Her breasts were slightly larger than they had been before the pregnancy, but after so many weeks they had already started to return to their regular size. Severus wondered how it was that she continued to be able to feed them.
'I just need to keep eating lots of healthy food and drinking a lot of water to keep the milk coming for them,' she said, snapping him out of his daze.
He looked up at her face with a bewildered expression. 'How did you know what I was thinking?' he asked.
'You were eyeing off my breasts and your eyebrows were furrowed like you were concentrating on an awfully difficult puzzle, Severus,' she said.
When the time came for lunch, the two of them left the office together, leaving the fed twins in the office to sleep with Dobby watching over them for an hour. In the Great Hall, Severus carefully took note of what his wife was eating. She had salad and a sandwich and drank a goblet of pumpkin juice and one of water also. She did eat a large amount of food, but did not eat anything overly greasy or unhealthy. It was no wonder that she had managed to get her body back into shape so quickly.
A lot of women, when they had children, continued in their habit of over-eating comfort food in a fit of post-natal depression. But his wife was not that sort of woman. No, she was a determined little thing, and she had made a comeback and continued to be able to provide for their two children. It was as though being a mother came naturally to her. But she was a natural at almost everything she had ever tried, whether it was potions or simply organizing an event.
Pride surged through him at having such a woman at his side. Hermione was on in a million, and he counted himself lucky to have her.
'Why are you looking at me like that?' she asked, snapping him out of his musing for the second time that day.
'I was just making note of what you were eating,' he offered.
She smiled and shrugged, not bothering to question him further. She was too preoccupied with eating her lunch to worry about whether that was the truth or not. Either way, she assumed it was not really so important. After lunch, Hermione kissed him on the cheek and went back down to the dungeons to prepare some ingredients for her next class. Severus returned to his office and thanked Dobby for watching the twins, looking into the cot to see that they were both still sleeping soundly, full from their lunch.
He sent the armchairs back to their original positions in the room before seating himself at his desk and waving a hand to open the curtains that covered the paintings. He spun around in his chair to look up at the portrait of Dumbledore only to find the old man looking down at him with a knowing smile on his face, his damnable blue eyes twinkling even in their oil painted state.
'Go on, old man. Have your gloat,' Severus said with a heavy sigh.
Albus smiled down at him. 'Why Severus, I don't know what you mean,' he said with a chuckle. 'It is just so good to see you looking so well and happy.'
Severus paused to think of a witty retort, but came up empty handed. 'Thank you, Albus,' he said simply, looking over to the corner where his children slumbered. 'This family means the world to me.'
'And so they should,' the old man said. 'Take care of all the precious things that you have found, my boy.'
'I will, Albus,' Severus replied. 'I will.'
A/N – Yes, it has been a long time since my last update, but real life just keeps getting in the way. I've finally found my muse hiding at the bottom of my coffee cup this morning, and hopefully it will keep popping up enabling me to continue this story.