Title: Checkmate

Summary: "Chess pieces can give advice about other things, you know." Oneshot. HGSS.

Rating: K+

Disclaimer: I am not J.K. Rowling, have no affiliation with Warner Brothers, Scholastic or Bloomsberry, and I have no rights to Harry Potter.

He began assembling the pieces. Pawns on the front line, rooks at the ends, knights, the Queen next to her King and the bishops as their guards. He took a long sip from his tea cup, the lights from the fireplace flickering on his face. The chess pieces began crying out as they were placed.

"Playing alone are we, now?" cackled one pawn.

"Indeed. I shall be black."

"Where's that pretty girlfriend of yours?" teased the white pawn in front of the king as he moved two places forward.

Severus cringed, "I'd prefer less puerile titles. Knight to F6."

"Got in a fight have you?" asked the knight, "Pity…she always treated us knights dearly. Not to keen on giving us up." The other three on the board nodded reverently.

He scowled, knowing all to well why she preferred knights.

"What did you do?" asked the bishop, stepping out to defend his pawn.


"Don't lie. Chess pieces can give advice about other things, you know."

He glared at it, "You'll be the first on my hit list, bishop."

He simpered immediately.

Severus moved his pawn. A white one slashed through it.

"Who needs women anyways," he said, cleaning off his sword, "It was probably her fault anyways!"

"Agreed! You should hex her," the black rook suggested.

"Or blackmail her!" added a pawn.

"Humiliate her!"

"Poison her!"

"Make her jealous!"

"Feed her spinach!"

"Oh dear," murmured the white Queen, shaking her head.

"Quiet!" piped up the white king, "I'm trying to sleep!"

"Me too," agreed the black king, his eyes closing lazily.

"Shut up," the wife hissed, "You never do anything besides the occasional castle anyways, you lazy bum."

"Ah," he said, "That's why you're here."

"Silence," snapped Severus, "I'm trying to think!"

They all quieted, though the queens made rather exasperated expressions at each other.

"Bishop to G4."

"Oi," he cried, "Are you blind? I'm defending your inner ranks! You can't move me."

Severus sighed, "I suppose."

"You're loosing it, boy," mumbled the black king.

"Thank you," he hissed.

The white pawn in front of the rook was frowning, "This is going so slow. That brown haired not-your-girlfriend-girlfriend used to beat you in minutes."

He looked offended, "She did not."

"Hey hey hey! Don't move me over there, ah now you've done it." He gulped

The white queen strode delicately towards the rook the pawn was in front of. She took out her small knife and destroyed it.

She grinned, "Distracted, darling?"

Severus groaned in acquiescence, "A bit."

"You should go set her straight," piped up the bishops.

"Yeah! Show her who's boss."

"I-I presume that would be considered insolent…" Severus muttered.

"Ha! Are you a man or what? Former Death Eater my marble ass."

The white queen shook her head, "I must say: being the only woman in your troop can be depressing. They're all such males."

He frowned, "What do you suggest?"

"Strategy is everything, dear," she said, nonchalantly blasting aside his pawn, "Woo her."

He cringed.

"All right," she said, frowning, "Tell me what you did."

"It's quite ludicrous, actually. We-I- nevermind. Women are, ah, non compos mentis. Mad, quite frankly."

She smiled as she engaged in a wrestling match with his rook, "We are."

"So then what? It's her fault."

"Severus darling, go apologize. It'll save you the hospital bill."

"I did not do anything, woman!"

"Even so," she conceded, "do it."

"Or what?"

She stood directly in front of the black queen, gave a little bow and thrust her knife into it. Picking up her skirts, she delicately kicked aside her fellow queen's pieces.


He sighed leaning back against his chair.


"Do you think he did it, then? Apologize?"

"Shut up, pawn, I'm sleeping."

"And that's all you ever do."

"I still stand by it; apologizing is a bad idea."

"Who asked you?"

"You did."

"No, I agree with pawn. He needs to be aggressive."

"Says the rook who's afraid of castling."

"Look where favoring women has got us! Bloody queens think they can control the whole board."

"Shut up, bishop."

"I for one, think it would be brilliant if she came back."

"You just want her to mollycoddle you."

"It's not my fault she likes knights."

"How about, we all hope that everything turns out alright. Or else, we'll be stuck in this box forever."

"Queen's got a point."

"We always do."

"To Severus and his not-girlfriend then!"



"White?" he offered, setting up the board.

They were sitting in her study this time, the lights were dim and the candlelight flickering against the bookshelves gave a pleasant environment.

The chess piece looked up at his companion, surprise evident on their faces.

"You got her back!" yelled one pawn.

Hermione blushed, "You told them?"

He rolled his eyes.

"Told us? Told us? He was begging for our advice."

Severus scowled, moving his pieces so that pawn was surrounded. He gulped.

"Just kidding, mate!"

Hermione laughed, moving her knight. He turned towards her and bowed.

"It's wonderful to have you back, Lady."

"Oh shut up," called a bishop.

"What did I tell you?" murmured the white king, "Apologize and it would all turn out right."

His queen hit him on the head, "Go back to sleep you fool."


"They never talk this much," Hermione commented, sending her knight galloping across the board.

"Quite the gossips."

"Say, you never told us why you got in a fight," said the black queen.

Hermione smiled, "It was Severus' fault."

"I knew it!" exclaimed a pawn, "It's always the men."

Severus sent his bishop after it.

"I apologized, Hermione, for calling your cat a mangy ball of hair."

"Not sincerely."

"I am sorry."

"Not good enough."

"Now?" He kissed her on the lips, catching her by surprise.

"I don't think so."

He grumbled something, and sulked against his chair. Hermione laughed and sent the white queen to the opposite side of the board.

"Checkmate. I forgive you now."

The Queen looked up and gave Severus a secretive smile.

Author's Note: A review would be appreciated.