Object of Affection
*Takes place after Growing Pains, between that story and Severus' Christmas Wish*
A week before school
"What do you mean, Dad said you have to earn your own money?" Lexy asked her brother Harry as she swung back and forth upon the swing in their backyard. They were both twelve that year and would soon be attending their second year at Hogwarts.
"What I said," Harry groaned, he was leaning against a tree. "Dad said if I want the new Nimbus 2001, I have to earn at least a quarter of the money myself. And how can I do that, when I'm too young to have a job?"
Lexy thought for a moment. "You could always do chores for Grandpa." Tobias always had some kind of work that needed doing around his house.
"He doesn't pay enough. It'll take me years to save up."
His sister frowned, thinking hard. "You could . . .sell your old broom back to Quality Quidditch supplies."
"What? You crazy, Lex? Then what would I ride in the meantime?"
"Okay, okay, bad idea. There has to be something . . .Wait! I've got it!"
Harry eyed her warily. Sometimes his adopted sister came up with the most insane ideas. Trouble was, they usually worked.
"Do we still have that picture Grandpa took three years ago? The one where Dad was changing his shirt 'cause Eileen spit up on him, and he was, like, shirtless for three minutes? It's the one that Grandpa said could stop traffic if we enlarged it and put it on a billboard?"
"Uh . . .yeah. It's in the family album, I think. Mum said it's her sexy Sev picture," Harry answered, flushing. "Why?"
"Because . . .we could make copies of that photo and enlarge them and then you could sell them!" Lexy said excitedly.
"Sell them? But would people really buy them?"
"Are you kidding, Harry! Dad's a chick magnet, you know how all his women patients drool over him!"
"Yeah, but . . .we can't do it here, somebody might tell him."
"Okay . . .so we'll do it at school."
"How much should we charge?"
"Worry about that later. First, let's get the picture and then we can go to the chemist down the street, they have a machine that you can enlarge and make copies of pictures on, it doesn't cost too much."
"Good, because I don't have too much."
The two kids pooled their money, most of it was allowance gained from doing chores around the house, Severus Snape's children were no strangers to doing chores, as he was a firm believer in chores teaching responsibility. As was their mother, Alaina, who was actually Harry's stepmom, but Lexy's real one.
Lexy knew how to work the photo machine, she was familiar with most Muggle things as she had grown up one back in America, before her mother had divorced her abusive father and moved to England, where they had met Severus and Harry and discovered Lexy was a witch.
They made seventy-five copies, enlarged, and Lexy had added the words, I'm Too Sexy across the bottom half of the photo. It cost them all the money they had, but Lexy swore it would be worth it. Harry hoped she was right, because now he was broke.
October 1st, 1992:
Master Healer Severus Snape was walking back from a local café on his lunch break when an owl flew down and delivered a letter to him. His office was just off of Diagon Alley and so this was not unusual.
Dear Mr. Snape,
It has recently come to my attention that you are an object of affection to over half the student body here at Hogwarts. My Heads of House have noticed a certain photo of you is being displayed all over the walls of the student dorms and above the beds or pressed into the books of various teenage girls. Apparently, it is now in fashion to carry a small one about in the pocket of one's robes, and the boys refer to these girls as "Sevvy's Gals". I believe they fancy you the way they do some wizard actors and rock band singers. Quite a coup for a Master Healer!
When I asked where they obtained the photo, they told me they bought it off of your children.
Just thought I should let you know, in case you come across a girl carrying your I'm So Sexy photo. I believe even Professor Sinistra has one.
Severus stopped dead in the middle of the pavement. His head was spinning around and around. He read the letter again. Then he contacted his office and told them to cancel the rest of his patients, he had to make an emergency visit to Hogwarts. I am going to kill them, I swear it! Then he Apparated to the school gates.
Had he known he was walking into a war zone, he would have Flooed directly into Dumbledore's office, but he wished to give himself a few moments to calm down and get over the shock, plus the desire to strangle his older children. So he opted to walk across the grounds to the castle.
It was the middle of the day and students were rushing to and fro to the greenhouse and to Care of Magical Creatures, or returning from there.
Severus was walking swiftly, his Healer whites billowing.
Suddenly, a girl looked up and spotted him.
"Merlin!" she screamed. "It's Sexy Snape! Look!"
Within two seconds, Severus was surrounded by at least thirty panting teenage girls, all of them gazing at him with the sort of worship reserved for religious icons. They all had photos of his shirtless self clutched in their sweaty palms and were thrusting quills in his face and grabbing his sleeves.
"Ooo, it really is him!"
"Healer Sev, can you sign mine first?"
"No, I was first!"
"Can you sign your name on my hand, I forgot my picture?"
"Look at his eyes, isn't he dreamy?"
Severus was frozen, a blush creeping up his face. Great Merlin, but half of these girls are patients of mine since they were babies. I've given them vaccinations and exams! And now they're . . .fawning over me like I'm . . . He plucked a photo from a girl just to see what all the fuss was about. Bloody hell, Snape! That's Alaina's favorite picture of me!
Girls were all over him, touching his robes, his arms, he felt smothered. No wonder the Beatles needed bodyguards, he thought frantically, recalling a late night special he had watched with Alaina showing the British icons getting mobbed by adoring fans. He was rapidly losing control of the situation.
"Ooh, he's just so . . .so SEXY!" screamed an overexcited girl right in his ear.
He thought he had gone deaf.
"Can I have a lock of your hair, I can press it and use it as a bookmark!" drooled another.
A bookmark? Oh, right. More like a love potion! Fat chance!
He attempted to move through the crowd. "Children, let me through, I have an appointment with the Headmaster . . .!" But after that I'm going to need an appointment with a therapist to recover from post adolescent worship syndrome!
Then he felt a small hand pinching and patting his backside.
That does it! He spun about as quickly as he could, shoving the girls away. "Young lady!" he snapped at an innocent looking blond fifteen year old. "Would you refrain from touching my backside? I am happily married and do not need you groping me!"
"But you're so fine, Healer Snape," she whispered breathily. "I just couldn't help myself!"
Severus was horrified. He was being attacked by a horde of teenagers, most of whom he had seen in nappies and they all seemed to have gone stark raving mad. It had to be the hormones.
"Can I have a piece of your robe, sir?" pleaded a plump girl. "I just want a little snip, to wrap round my finger." She held up a pair of scissors.
"NO!" he bellowed, thinking that if she started cutting and snipping, he was libel to have his clothes torn off.
He managed to mutter a Repelling Charm, and that cleared some breathing space about him, enough so he could get to the gargoyle stairwell. "Droobles!" he called and the gargoyle opened to admit him, and he stepped upon the revolving stair with a groan of relief and the entrance shut with a snap, right in the faces of his admirers.
Severus quickly checked himself to make sure he wasn't looking like a vagabond before knocking on Albus's office door.
Ten minutes later, both Lexy and Harry had been pulled out of class and summoned to the Headmaster's office. Both of them were mystified.
"What did we do?" Lexy wondered.
"I dunno," Harry shrugged. He couldn't recall getting into trouble recently.
When they entered the office, they saw a very irate Severus standing in the middle of the room with his hands on his hips, giving them one of his Snape glares.
Both his children gulped, for they knew that glare meant they were in serious trouble, as in grounded for the rest of the term. When they were younger it would have meant a trip over his knee.
"Uh . . .hi, Dad!" Harry said brightly. "What a surprise to see you here!"
"Harry James Severus Potter and Alexis Marie Snape!" growled their father. "Which one of you had the bright idea to start selling my picture?" He held out one of the photos.
The two children glanced guiltily at each other. "Uh . . . it was . . .err . . .we thought it would be a good way to . . ." Lexy stammered.
" . . .to make money so I could buy the Nimbus 2001," Harry finished.
"It was my idea to use the picture," Lexy admitted. "Why are you mad at us?"
"Why am I . . ." Severus threw up his hands. "For heaven's sake, Lexy, I'm your father! You don't go around and—and—"
"I believe the word you're looking for, Severus, is pimp," Albus supplied.
Severus shot him a glare. "I know that, Albus! I was trying to avoid using that word. Bloody hell!"
"We only sold seventy-five copies," Harry defended. "The rest of them used magic to copy their picture."
"Just out of curiosity, how much money did you make?" asked the Headmaster.
Lexy pulled out a small memo pad and announced, "We made about 500 Galleons, Uncle Al. We raised the price on the photo from one Galleon to three when we saw how crazy girls went over it. And then we started charging the ones who copied it a fee because they didn't ask our permission."
"Ah . . .inflation," said Albus, his eyes twinkling. "This one has quite a head on her shoulders, Severus! She'll make a cutthroat businesswoman someday."
"Humph! Selling expose photos of her father, no doubt!" Severus snorted.
"Does this mean we're grounded?" Lexy asked in a small voice.
"Does this mean I don't get my Nimbus?" Harry asked in the exact same tone.
"I ought to make you return all that money to the girls and get every single photo and burn it!" Severus scolded. "I nearly had my clothes ripped off me as I walked across the grounds! I was attacked by a horde of hormonally crazed teenage girls!"
Albus began chuckling. "Oh, how I wish I had a camera!"
"You stay out of this!" Severus ordered.
"Well, Dad . . .you know Mum always says you're a sexy beast," his son informed him. "And you never said how I had to earn the money."
Albus chuckled. "He's your son, all right, Severus! Slytherin to the bone!"
Severus groaned. And to think, he'd been so proud when Harry and Lexy had been Sorted into Slytherin.
"Really, Severus, you should be flattered. You're what, thirty-two? How many men your age still have adolescent girls panting after them—"
"That's enough, Albus! I'm a Healer, not an exhibitionist!"
"But Dad, he's right. Most men your age are getting flabby round the middle and their hair's falling out and their face is all puffy and only their wives think they're good looking or those really desperate girls that hang out at the pubs trying to pick up guys," Lexy pointed out.
"Alexis! Do you have any idea what this could do to my reputation as a respectable Healer if this got out?" cried Severus.
"Yeah, you'd have more patients than you knew what to do with," Harry sniggered.
Severus cuffed him on the back of the head. "None of your cheek, mister! Where's the photo now?"
"Here, sir." Lexy handed over the picture.
Severus tucked it into his pocket. "I cannot believe you two . . ."
"We're sorry," Harry felt compelled to apologize.
"Oh, come now, Severus, don't be so hard on the boy! It was all in fun!"
"Fun! I felt like I was the main course at a banquet of starving lionesses!"
"But . . .what do I do now to earn the rest of the money?" Harry asked.
"You work for it," Severus said bluntly. "You're lucky I'm allowing you to still get that broom. And if any other girl comes and asks you for a picture you tell her it was a limited time offer."
"Yes, sir," they agreed.
"Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to be leaving. I have to do rounds at the hospital. Behave, you two, and don't make me come down here again." He said gruffly.
He rumpled Harry's hair and hugged Lexy, who whispered, "We love you, Dad."
Severus gave her a smile, then he turned and strode out the door, peering around the gargoyle statue before exiting the staircase.
So far, so good. No girls were lurking about, trying to catch a glimpse of him or demanding an autograph for every aunt, cousin and sister in their family. The coast was clear.
He hurried out the castle entrance and down the stairs into the courtyard, glancing about furtively. I think I'm safe, everyone's inside now for class or eating lunch, thank Merlin!
He started across the lawn.
No squealing hyper gaggle of girls.
The wrought iron gates were drawing closer and closer.
Seven feet. Eight feet. Ten feet.
"Look! It's Sexy Sevvy!"
"Oooh! Where? Where?
He darted a panicked look behind him.
A knot of ten or twelve girls wearing obsessed expressions were heading in his direction, eyes fixed upon the object of their affection.
Severus abandoned any attempt at dignity and ran.
Back in Dumbledore's office, Harry looked at Lexy and said, "Now what do we do? The Nimbus goes on sale right before Christmas, and it's sixteen hundred Galleons. I'm still short a hundred and I have nothing to sell that anybody would want, and no way to work with school. And there are still twenty people who wanted pictures."
Lexy looked at him helpessly.
"Ahem. I think I may be able to help you out there, children," announced Albus, a sneaky gleam lurking in his blue eyes.
"You can? How?" asked Harry.
Albus reached into his desk and pulled out a familiar photo and winked at them. "Don't tell your father."
I felt like writing this crazy story to lighten my mood after writing that very dark chapter of Irresistible Chemistry. Just a bit of humor and fluff to make you laugh. I had been watching a video about Snape on youtube with the song, "I'm Too Sexy" and got inspired by it!
Anyone interested in a small sequel?