Reveiw, or I'll hold the next chapter hostage!


Goyle had been a surprise; partly because she wasn't ever sure he was fully literate enough to send owls, but also just because he hadn't said anything to her in school, so for him to book an appointment to help her research was a surprise to say the least. Having heard nothing more than grunts from him and Crabbe in school, she wasn't holding high hopes for the information he would impart, however she was hardly going to turn him away. He too had lost friends in the war, and maybe, just maybe, he knew something about Professor Snape that she could use.

The morning of the appointment Hermione made sure she was in her office early, flitting around trying to gather up her notes and collate them. Exactly on time, Goyle walked slowly through the door, as if he was trespassing.

'Hello there....' she hadn't thought about what to call him, after all, calling him by his surname might bring back the wrong memories.

'Greg,' he grunted back, 'just call me Greg, Granger.'

Thought slightly bewildered about calling him by his given name, Hermione continued with the niceties of tea and coffee in an attempt to think about how she was going to ask Gregory Goyle about his relationship with his former head of house.

Sipping on her tea, Hermione watched Greg fumble around with his coffee, almost spilling it. His hands were big, and Hermione could see how easy it was to not get a proper grip on things. It made Hermione wonder.

'Greg, I've had a thought. What were you like at Potions at school? I'm afraid I don't remember how you fared in our lessons, but you didn't take it to NEWT level did you?'

Greg looked up, bemusedly, and breathed in the fumes of the coffee. 'Not so well, really. You don't need to be polite Granger, I know I'm not the brightest brain in the box, you don't have to skate around it.'

Taken aback Hermione tried to justify herself, 'Thats not what I meant, Greg, I only wanted to get an idea of your relationship with Professor Snape.'

'Do your Potions grades reflect your relationship with him, Granger?' He asked back.

'Well not exactly, he was always much harder on me than the other Professors were, though my grades didn't suffer too much for it. It was no secret that he hated Harry though, so I bore the brunt of that relationship too.'

'You had good grades Granger, and he didn't like you, he felt no compulsion to help you at all. Not only were you friends with Potter, but you were not in his house, and yet he still went out of his way to ensure you were challenged. He wanted you to succeed, surely you see that? He might have been nasty and spiteful, but after everything his work paid off didn't it? You passed Potions with good grades, and his cover was kept.'

Hermione tilted her head to the left and her mouth formed an 'O' shape.

'Don't look so surprised Granger, you know Snape was an amazing actor, and he played his part well. With me and Vincent, it wasn't much different. From first year we had failed repeatedly, and the weeks before the exams he would call us in and teach us both, in private, everything that was on those exam papers. We had to pass, it was expected of us, and we both knew there was no way of doing that in Potions, so he tutored us. Every year without fail, he guided us through the exams and we came out with passes, not Outstandings, but passes. I reckon it saved our lives. Pureblood families don't like stupid children, they have to be intelligent to carry on the lineage. If the families had known how thick we were they would have disowned us, only male children or not.

'I had no idea.'

'Well of course not Granger,' Greg exclaimed, 'If you had known then Snape would have been doing a bad job of things. He gave us repeated detentions to make us do practice papers, and to make Malfoy be on his own for a bit, he needed to learn to have some courage.'

'Do you think it worked?'

'Oh ultimately, yeah. I mean we didn't continue Potions for our NEWTS, we kept to simpler things, Divination, Charms, I think Vincent did History of Magic as well; but we passed up until we didn't need to anymore, and Malfoy, yeah. Sixth year, he might've been cowardly, but he certainly grew up.'

'Do you still keep in contact with your old schoolfriends?'

'Haven't spoken to Malfoy since the final battle, not allowed to yet, part of my Community Service, but I visit Vincent's grave once a week, leave some flowers. None of the others though, Pansy, I have no idea what she's up to, Theo and Blaise, nope, haven't seen them at all.'

'Oh, I'm sorry.'

Greg laughed. 'No don't be, we weren't exactly the best of friends, just thrown together by a stupid hat and had to make the best of it, we can all let go now. It's okay.'

Hermione gave a little squeakish laugh. 'Thats so strange, with my group of friends the war brought us closer together, and yet with yours...'

She left off, and it became clear the meeting had ended. Greg got up to leave, thanking Hermione for her time. As he made his way towards the door he turned around.

'You forget Granger, you were on the winning side.'

Reveiw, or you'll never know what Percy does.....