A/N- Well, here I am with a new chapter finally! I'm happy to say that I got a new computer as my old one is – quite literally – falling apart at the seams. Surprisingly, it still works though I got a new one anyway. It's one of those teeny-tiny ones that are mostly for surfing the net. On a side note, I would like to welcome the newest addition to my family, a little girl born just before Christmas! Anyway, you don't want to read long winded A/N's, so on with the chapter!
Warnings- This chapter has not been Beta'ed. Be prepared for OOC-ness, and a little gross-out scene near the end plus some foul language (this fic isn't rated M just for future slash!).
Harry walked out of the bank several hours later carrying several Muggle type manila folders containing all the information on his financial inheritance and with the air of a person who had one too many shocks and didn't quite know what to do with them self. Which was quite true. His meeting with the Goblins about the financial aspect of his inheritance had gone both better and worse than he had anticipated.
Better because he found that, even with Dumbledore stealing from his accounts, he had more money (Muggle and Magical), stocks in companies (both Muggle and Magical), and properties (again in both the Muggle and Magical world), than he knew what to do with. It went worse because he had to meet with several different Goblins to get a semi-accurate account of his holdings. Every family line seemed to have a different account manager not to mention the Goblin that was in charge of the School Vault the Founders had set up and all the Vaults of lesser families that he had inherited, was heir to, or that had been gifted to 'poor orphaned Harry Potter, Savior of the Wizarding World'; and also that Dumbledore had given his money to more people than just Hermione and the Weasleys.
He was vaguely aware of Luna leading him back through Diagon Alley - which was nearly deserted seeing as it was getting rather late - and back into Ollivander's shop. He vaguely heard Mr. Ollivander call out a greeting as he was steered upstairs and forced to take a seat on his bed. Somewhere in the back of his mind he registered that Hedwig was perched on the foot of the bed and that Luna was no longer in the room. The question of where she went to entered his mind but left just as quickly as it came. She was soon back though with a couple of potion vials. He took them from her outstretched hand and downed them quickly while she closed the window. The first potion was labeled as a Calming Drought and the second was a slow acting Sleeping Drought. He immediately felt better as the Calming Drought took effect and gave Luna a small smile of thanks which she returned with a smile of her own.
She took the folders from him and placed them on a small desk that sat under the window.
"We can go over all this in the morning with Grandfather if you'd like. Either way, that sleeping potion will take effect in about 20 minutes so you had better get ready for bed."
With that, the blond left him alone.
Harry didn't bother doing anything other than stripping his clothes off and pulling on a ragged pair of sleep pants and simply foregoing a shirt. He was too exhausted, both emotionally and physically, to investigate his body's new appearance.
Lord Voldemort sat at the head of the table in Riddle Manor and watched as his loyal followers entered the room, each bowing in respect to him before taking their seats. His crimson eyes scanned the nearly full table, a small frown crossing his face which was obscured by a hood. There was someone missing. He reached out through the Dark Mark, seeing which of his followers had not answered the summons.
Hmm... Severus had failed to come. The man was one of his most loyal and was hardly ever late to a meeting if his memory of past meetings was correct. He decided to go ahead and start the meeting. If the Potions Master didn't show up by the end, he would send Lucius to investigate. With that in mind, he settled in to listen to the still mostly useless reports of his followers. After about two hours of hearing about what new laws had been passed and who was now in positions of power and influence, boredom and irritation took over and still Severus had not shown up. The man was going to be in for a lot of pain if he did not have a good enough reason to ignore the summons. Even if he did have a good reason, the Dark Lord decided that he would probably end up dealing out a few Crucio's just to make sure the incident never happened again.
"I have heard enough for now. Everyone dismissed. Report back when you actually have something of use to report. Lucius, remain behind. I have something I wish you to do for me."
When everyone save Lucius had gone, Voldemort stood and dropped his hood, allowing Lucius to see his features that were a cross between human and reptilian. They walked to the Apparation point in the entrance hall with Lucius following two steps behind his lord.
"Lucius, it seems that our dear Severus missed tonight's meeting. Go find him then bring him back here for a little... chat, would you?" Voldemort said when they reached their destination.
"As you wish, My Lord." Lucius replied neutrally, giving a bow of respect before Disapparating for his
friends home hoping that he had a very good reason for missing the meeting.
When he arrived at Snapes' manor, Lucius was met by a rather distraught house-elf.
"Oh, thank the Goddess you be here Master Lucius, sir!" The little elf that Lucius recognized as Missy
exclaimed while pulling at her ears. "Master Severus be in a right terrible state down in his lab sir and
nothing Missy be trying to do for him be helping!"
Missy the house-elf then proceeded to drag the blond man to Severus' lab. At first Lucius was too shocked by the elf's behavior to react to being manhandled by the creature then was too worried, though he would never show it, about his friend to protest. Not that he would have done anything to the elf though, she was, after all, not one of his elves and Severus always did maintain that the creatures did better work if they weren't afraid of being cursed every two minutes.
So, with that in mind, Lucius allowed Missy to grab hold of his silk robes and pull him into Severus' lab. The sight that met him was decidedly not what he had envisioned. The elf's frantic state had led him to believe that there had been some kind of explosion that had left Severus incapacitated in some way. While it did appear that there had been at least one explosion - the room was practically covered in a rainbow of useless potions - and that his friend was indeed incapacitated, Lucius quickly discovered that it was not a potions accident that had put Severus out of commission.
No, Lucius had spotted Severus sitting on the floor in one of the only relatively clean areas with his upper body leaning heavily on the wall. The man was surrounded by several empty bottles of Old Ogden's Fire-Whiskey with another half empty bottle in his left hand and was staring at a piece of parchment that was clutched tightly in his right hand. Lucius watched, dazed, as Severus let out a sound that sounded like a cross between a hiccup and a sob before lifting the bottle to his lips and taking good sized drink of the strong liquor.
"Missy has tried everything to help her Master, yes she has, but nothing be working! Missy even tried hiding all the liquor, but Master ordered Missy to be bringing it back and not be taking it away again!"
Missy's quiet but distraught words brought Lucius out of his daze. He immediately went over to his fool of a friend, snatched the liquor away, summoned the strongest hangover potion Severus had and tipped it down his throat. When that didn't have any effect on the man, Lucius shot the most powerful sobering spell he could think of - with absolutely no effect.
"Missy be trying all that too, Master Lucius, but it not be working!" Missy cried, pulling frantically at her ears once again.
"I'm sure you did admirably Missy, but I'll take over from here." Lucius said, never taking his eyes off the drunken mass before him.
When Missy had gone, the blond aristocrat sneered down at his friend, wondering what in Merlin's name had brought on this behavior and how to get the man sober. After a few minutes of thought, Lucius finally came up with a plan that he hoped would work.
He Summoned the strongest Blood Purifying Drought that Severus had and another hangover potion, then once again turned his wand on the Potions Master sending a Vomiting Hex at him. Within a few seconds, Severus was emptying the contents of his stomach with Lucius Vanishing the mess in regular intervals and lifting the hex when nothing but bile came up. He then poured the Drought down the other man's throat and waited for the potion to nullify the last of the alcohol.
About a minute later, a pained groan let Lucius know that his idea was working. Lucius then poured the last potion down Severus' throat, watching as the dark haired man became aware of his surroundings once more. The blond smirked when his friend let out another groan and let his head fall against the wall when he was spotted.
"What in Merlin's name are you doing here Luc?"
"Oh, nothing much. It's just that a mutual friend of ours sent me to find out why you ignored his call. I arrived here hoping to find that the reason for your absence was easily explained, instead I am greeted by a distraught house-elf and practically dragged into your lab just to find you drunk out of your mind!" Lucius drawled, a little anger seeping into his voice. "Now, I've just spent the last few minutes trying to get you sober, so I do believe that you owe me an explanation as to why you did something so monumentally stupid as getting drunk while brewing?" The blond practically shouted while gesturing to the many botched potions.
Severus took a good look around his lab and let out a groan of dismay. It was going to take ages to get his lab back in order!
"Damn it all...!" Severus muttered under his breath, thinking of how much work was ahead of him.
Lucius lifted one elegant eyebrow in response to his friends cursing and waited for Severus to tell him what brought this situation about. He didn't have to wait much longer, as Severus pulled himself up, using the wall as support, and thrust a piece of parchment in his general direction. He took the paper and proceeded to read. By the time he had finished, Lucius felt that he could use a few stiff drinks and it wasn't even his family that had been torn apart!
He was silent for a moment, then quietly stated "He'll want to know about this... tonight. He's asked me to bring you back for a little 'chat'" and handed the paper back.
Severus just grunted in response. Of coarse he was going to have to inform the Dark Lord about this, he just wasn't sure of how to go about it. He hadn't even had time to digest the information, how the hell was he supposed to inform his master that he had a son that he had been trying to kill since he was just over a year old? While the Dark Lord seemed to be slowly regaining his sanity, it didn't mean that he would take this news well. Add this to the fact that he hadn't made much progress with the regenerating potion and that he had missed a meeting (to get trashed no less), Severus quickly came to the conclusion that he was in for one hell of a night.
A/N - Wow, I kinda grossed myself out with part of this chapter... oh well, I just couldn't resist. Review please and let me know what you think! Feel free to ask me any questions- I'll either send a PM or answer them in an Author's Note in the next chapter.