Maps and Mysteries
A/N: Sorry for taking so long to write this, but I had bought the six complete seasons of NUMB3RS and have been watching that in between writing this.
To reviewer James' Defender: And your point is? The problem is Potter never 'deflated his head'; he was the same arrogant toerag seventh year as he was fifth year. Perhaps you're just pissy because in the end, Severus turned out to be three times the hero Potter was.
Severus yawned and rubbed his face as he made his way up the stairs from the dungeon. It was 7:30; he had been getting up early to avoid any interaction with his roommates who were becoming more unpleasant about his friends. He knew he wouldn't be able to hold them off forever with the Black Cloak fiction. He might actually have to ask Black Leif and Conor to teach him something more than just basic defense and that would certainly cause questions from his grandparents. As he walked into the Great Hall he spotted Lily sitting at the Gryffindor table reading a book. He walked over to her and sat down beside her.
She looked up startled and then smiled as she saw Severus. "Good morning, Sev."
"Good morning, Lily. Why are you up so early?" She wasn't known for being an early riser.
"I was reading this book Professor Gold gave me on wand lore before I went to bed last night and it's so fascinating I didn't want to put it down and go to sleep. I got up early so I could read more before I went to class."
"You should ask him if he'll tell you about his wand. It's really a fascinating story," Severus said.
Lily nodded. "This book tells all about wand trees and there are so many different ones not to mention wand cores. Professor Gold said Hogwarts used to teach specific courses for people who wanted to learn how to create wands, but they were eventually dropped because of lack of interest."
Severus shook his head. "Grandpa's mentioned on more than one occasion that Mr. Ollivander has lamented about the lack of training available other than himself and how future wand makers are going to learn."
"Well, Mr. Ollivander isn't going to live forever and even when Salem takes over the shop eventually; he's going to need an apprentice since he's the last Ollivander. I think it would be easier if I was already well versed in wand lore before I applied for an apprenticeship with Mr. Ollivander."
Severus nodded. "You would have a much better chance of being accepted."
The other friends slowly made their way into the Great Hall, yawning and chatting about the upcoming Quidditch match between Gryffindor and Slytherin that weekend.
"I can't wait!" Frank said to Sirius. "It should be an exciting match. I know the Slytherins have been practicing as hard as we have."
Alice sat down on the other side of Lily while Frank and Sirius sat down with Remus and Pete sitting across from them. Caddaric came in and sat down next to Pete. Irene followed Caddaric and sat down on the other side of Severus. A few minutes later, Dorian, Tav, and Reg walked in and sat down next to Caddaric who was engaged in discussing the Quidditch match with Frank and Sirius. Jane and Emily were the last ones in.
Dorian smiled at Frank and Sirius. "I hope you guys haven't got your hearts set on the cup decorating your common room because its staying in Slytherin House."
Jane and Tav nodded at Dorian's assertion. Rolf Applewhite had been putting the Slytherin team through the grinder in preparation.
"Don't be too sure," Frank replied. "We'll see on Saturday afternoon."
Tav smirked. "It's a date!"
The warning bell sounded, letting the students know that they had ten minutes to get to their first class. The friends picked up their book bags and headed off to their first class. Irene and Caddaric waved and walked down
the Charm corridors while Dorian and Tav headed off to the dungeon for Potions and the rest were going to Transfiguration.
James and his friends were walking behind Remus, Peter, and Sirius. James leaned forward and whispered in a threatening tone, "I'm going to find out what your secret is, Lupin. You can bet on that!"
Formerly, a threat such as that would have terrified Remus, but since he'd told his friends about his condition and knew they had his back, he could relax. "Do you mean my secret obsession with anything chocolate, Pothead? Do your best. By the way, how your dad's drinking problem?"
James mouth dropped open. It took him the entire Transfiguration class to figure out that the Potter name, once so feared and respected, had become a joke and it earned him a scolding from McGonagall for not paying attention and the loss of five house points.
Lily and Severus walked into Potions, earning a smile from Horace at the sight of his two of his best brewers. They were followed in by Remus, Sirius, Peter, Alice and Frank, most of the rest of Slytherin house. James, Mary, Lisa, and Daniel came in last with James looking decidedly glum.
"Good morning, everyone. Today we will be brewing a potion that is handy for when you're working outside in the daytime or in the evenings. It keeps flies, mosquitoes, wasps, and other irritating pests away."
James raised his hand. "Professor?"
"Yes, Mr. Potter?"
"Can it keep Snivellus from dripping grease all over everyone?" His comment started Daniel laughing and Mary and Lisa tittering.
Severus glared at James, but said nothing. After all Potter had already lost 5 points for his house so far this morning and if his intention was to keep his house from winning the House Cup; he was doing an excellent job of it.
Horace frowned and said, "Mr. Potter, I've warned you previously about calling Mr. Snape derogatory names. Ten points from Gryffindor and detention with me tonight at seven o'clock on the dot and if you're even one minute late, it will be another five points."
The other Gryffindors stared angrily at James; Frank's stare was the fiercest, but Lily's was almost as bad. They would never catch up in points even if Gryffindor won every Quidditch match this year if Potter kept losing points in practically every class.
"The potion we will be brewing today is called Pestis Vitatio, but we simply call it an anti-pest potion," Horace lectured.
"Too bad it doesn't work on humans," Sirius whispered, casting a glancing over at James and his friends.
"Who can tell me something about this potion?" Horace asked as several hands shot up. "Miss Starkey? Can you tell me the main ingredient?"
"It's citronella, Professor," Alice said.
"Very good, Miss Starkey. Five points to Gryffindor. Mr. Black, can you name two other ingredients?"
"Cedar and lemongrass," Sirius replied.
"Excellent, Mr. Black. Take another five points. And Mr. Avery, what say you?"
"Eucalyptus and basil are another two ingredients."
"Very good. Five points to Slytherin. Anyone else?"
Peter raised his hand and said, "The remaining ingredients are peppermint, geranium and feverfew."
"Again excellent, Mr. Pettigrew and another five points." He turned and waved his wand at the board and the instructions for brewing the potion appeared on the blackboard. "You have 45 minutes to brew this potion and please, if you're having any problems brewing, summon either Mr. Snape or myself for help before your potion goes beyond the fixable stage and you earn a zero for the day."
Alice went to get the ingredient for hers and Lily's potion while Peter and Sirius fetched the ingredients for his, Remus' and Sirius' potions while Remus lit the fires under their cauldrons. Halfway through the brewing, Mary raised her hand and called, "Professor?"
Horace bustled over and immediately saw her cauldron was bubbling furiously and called over his shoulder, "Mr. Snape? Please get me a bit of honeycomb from the closet stores."
Severus returned in a few seconds with the honeycomb and gave it to Horace who dropped it into Mary's cauldron. The fierce bubbling immediately ceased. "Now, let's see what may have caused this." He scanned the remaining ingredients on the table next to her cauldron. "I see the problem, Miss MacDonald. You've added the lemongrass prematurely. It's supposed to be added the very last and the reason for that is so the other ingredients can suppress its volatile nature." He vanished her potion and pointed at the cupboard. "You still have enough time to brew the potion again and if you add the ingredients according to the recipe; I'm sure you'll do fine." He continued around the room and stopped at James' cauldron. "Very good, Mr. Potter," Horace complimented James. "Do you see what happens when you apply yourself?"
Severus smirked. He didn't know how James had managed to brew a successful potion, but he was relieved that there weren't going to be any explosions today – at least not from Potter. However, there were still the Lestrange twins, Rosier and Wilkes to worry about. Mulciber and Avery seem to be doing alright with their potions.
Horace wandered over to Lily's and Alice's cauldrons and peered into them. "Oho! Miss Evans and Miss Starkey, excellent work!"
'Thanks, Professor," Lily replied with a smile.
"Snape!" Rabastan called urgently. "Get over here. There's something wrong with our potions!" His partner Adam Wilkes took a step backwards just in case something decided to explode.
Rodolphus looked over his shoulder at his twin from his brewing station in front of him. His partner, Evan Rosier looked up, shook his head, and went back to brewing. The Lestrange twins certainly weren't the best wands on the shelf.
Severus came over, glanced into Rabastan's cauldron to see it was boiling furiously and shook his head. One scan of his brewing station told him that Rabastan had dumped all his ingredients in at once and not in any particular order. "Didn't you hear Professor Slughorn tell MacDonald that she shouldn't have put in the lemongrass until the very last? Professor?"
Slughorn came over, took one look and vanished the potion from Rabastan's cauldron. "Unfortunately, you don't have time to brew this again so if you want full marks for today; you will need to brew it tonight." He turned to the class. "Please decant a vial of your potion, put your name on it, and bring it up to my desk. Please clean up your brewing stations before you leave also as I have noticed some of you are leaving without doing it." He looked at James, Daniel, Mary, and Lisa.
"Hogwarts has over a hundred house elves," James muttered to Daniel. "I don't know why they can't do this."
"Because they're aren't your personal slaves, Potter," Lily snapped. "And you're nothing but a lazy toerag."
As they left the room, Severus and Lily walking together, they heard Daniel mock Lily in a high girlish voice. "Oh Potter, you're nothing but a lazy toerag!"
Peter who was walking behind Sev and Lily with Remus and Sirius stopped, turned, and marched up to James and Daniel. "You stop making fun of Lily! She's smarter and nicer than any of you!"
James and Daniel pulled out their wands. "And you're a snotnose little twit who doesn't know who your betters are," Daniel said.
"I think he has a crush on Evans," James sneered, twirling his wand around.
"Lily's my friend and she's worth more than the four of you put together!"
"What do you say we teach this little runt a lesson?" Daniel asked. Mary and Lisa nodded eagerly.
"I wouldn't do that if I were you MacTavish," Severus replied, his wand at ready. Remus and Sirius pulled out their wands as well as Lily.
"Yeah, Pothead," Frank said from behind them. Both he and Alice had their wands drawn, too. "We're not going to allow you guys to start bullying Pete."
"I think you four would look great as slugs," Jane threatened, her wand at ready.
"They're already slimy," Sirius added with a grin at Jane.
Surrounded on all sides, James lowered his wand. "This isn't over."
"It is as far as I'm concerned, Pothead!" Sirius replied with a glare at him and MacTavish.
"Alright, Alright, what's going on here?" Mr. Filch demanded coming up with Mrs. Norris at his heels.
"Nothing that should concern a servant," Daniel replied with a haughty sneer.
James glared at Mrs. Norris. He hated cats; she and Snivellus' cat were at the top of his list. Mrs. Norris was a Kneazle and apparently could sense him even under his invisibility cloak. She'd gotten him into trouble with Filch on more than one occasion.
"We'll see what your head of house has to say about that, MacTavish," Mr. Filch replied with a grin and sent Mrs. Norris to find Professor McGonagall.
Minerva followed Mrs. Norris into the Entrance Hall where everyone was waiting. "What is going on, Argus?"
"They all had their wands drawn, Professor."
"He started it!" James said pointing at Pete.
"Pete didn't start it. MacTavish insulted Lily and Pete was standing up for her, Professor," Frank said. "Potter and MacTavish pulled out their wands and said they were going to teach Pete a lesson about respecting his supposed 'betters'."
"And MacTavish referred to Mr. Filch as a servant, Professor," Emily added.
"So we have our wands to protect Pete from being bullied," Lily explained.
"Mr. Potter and Mr. MacTavish, detention with me tonight for attempting to bully Mr. Pettigrew and being rude to Mr. Filch," she said. "And two points each from Gryffindor and Slytherin for drawing your wands between classes," Minerva added. "Now off to your next class before you lose more points for tardiness." She turned to Mr. Filch. "Thank you, Argus for keeping this from getting out of hand."
"Just doing my job, Professor."
"Great," Frank muttered as they walked to Herbology.
"I'm sorry," Pete apologized.
"It wasn't your fault, Pete," Lily said. "And thank you for defending me."
"Besides, we can make up the lost points in class," Alice added.
"If Pothead and his friends don't lose us anymore," Remus pointed out.
Today was double Herbology and they knew that they could easily make up the points they'd lost. Alice was brilliant at Herbology and always gained Gryffindor points. Severus was also really good at Herbology and he could make up the two points he'd lost and even put Slytherin ahead. That was of course if the Lestrange twits didn't lose any more.
Sirius and Peter were working at the same table with Jane and Severus across from them. Both were intent on repotting their Musselweed plants and weren't paying attention to anything around them. "Sirius?" Peter called softly.
"What, Pete?" Sirius asked as he glared at the root of his plant which was in a tangled mess. Professor Sprout had said the roots needed to put into the pot separated and spread out or the plant wouldn't thrive.
"I had an idea how we can help Remus with his …situation. I found this book in the library, but it's going to take time, but I think we could do it."
"Yeah?" Sirius said looking up from his plant. "Why don't we meet up after our last class and you can tell me about it."
"Okay," Pete agreed, returning to his plant.
"How are you and Professor Gold going to work on your stalking and tracking once it starts to snow, Sev?" Lily asked.
"I'm going to suggest we use the special room on the seventh floor. I don't know whether Professor Gold knows of its existence," Severus replied softly even though Pothead and his friends were working on the other side of the table in front of them.
"That's a good idea because I'll bet it can transform itself into the Forbidden Forest."
After their classes for the day were over; they met in the Room of Requirement. They had Astronomy class that evening at midnight so they worked on their assignments that were due on Monday. Dorian, Tav, and Jane were at Quidditch practice until dinner.
Severus noticed Sirius and Peter sitting in a corner of the room, their heads bent over a book. They had been late in coming and said they'd been in the library doing research.
"I've been thinking," Irene said. "What if we could see where Pothead and his friends were before they saw us and then we could avoid them completely."
"Yeah and avoid any more point loss," Frank added.
"Are you going to get a crystal ball, Irene?" Caddaric teased
"No, I'm talking something real …like a magical map."
"Whoa!" Reg exclaimed. "That would be great! We could keep track of Slughorn and see when he's coming to check the dorms."
"He is keeping a closer eye on things due to your putting that dungbomb under Crouch's bed," Severus pointed out.
"True, but old Barty deserved it. He's complete nutter!"
"That's certainly true," Emily said. "He looks at us Muggleborns as if we were slightly less than garbage."
"It would be great if we can figure out how to do it," Remus said. "It would probably take us a couple of years at least to draw a map and magic it."
"We should also charm it with a special word or phrase so only one of us can use it," Lily suggested. "It would be pointless if Pothead was able to use it."
"Lily, Emily, and I can research the charms we'll need," Irene said.
Sirius cleared his throat and offered in an awkward tone, "I can help draw the map. Potter and I did a lot of exploring with his cloak. We found out that there's a tunnel leading into Hogsmeade and tunnels that lead other places too. It's really amazing."
"That would be great, Sirius," Severus said. "We can use all the help we can get with drawing the map."
Sirius smiled. "Once we get the map done; Potter and MacTavish won't know what hit them!"
Page ~*~*~*~* Break
The weekend of the first Quidditch game finally arrived. There was much excitement at breakfast Saturday morning. Frank was attired in his Gryffindor uniform at the breakfast table and Dorian, Tav, and Jane were attired in their Slytherin ones. They were sitting at the Hufflepuff table this morning and everybody was looking forward to the game that was scheduled to start at ten.
"You snakes are dead meat!" James called across the table. "We're going to fly your bums off!"
Frank, an irritated expression on his face turned around and said, "Who's we, Potter? Last time I looked you weren't on the team."
"Yeah? Well, that's just for now. I'll be back on soon enough."
"Not if I have anything to say about it," Frank muttered turning back around. "Arse!"
Dorian, Tav, and Jane got up when they finished. "Pregame talk," Jane muttered. "Applewhite wants to make sure we know the game plan.
Once breakfast was over with, the friends made their way back to their dorms to get their coats, hats, and gloves, meeting up again in the Entrance Hall.
"This is going to be so exciting," Lily exclaimed, her face flushed and her eyes bright.
Severus smiled, thinking she looked adorable.
They made their way down to the pitch. It was a cold, grey day and looked as if it could start snowing any minute. They decided to sit with the Hufflepuffs since the Gryffindors would not be welcome in the Slytherin box and the Slytherins weren't welcome in the Gryffindor box.
The teams came out from opposite ends of the pitch, hovering on their brooms while below them Madam Hooch released the Bludgers, the Snitch, and then tossed the Quaffle up into the air.
Frank grabbed the Quaffle and flew off with it, but a well aimed Bludger clipped the tail of his broom, causing him to drop it and Dorian to get it.
"Good one, Longbum!" James hooted loudly. "Why didn't you just hand it over to Arsedrew and save yourself the trouble?"
"Shut up, Potter! You sore loser!" Sirius yelled.
"You shut up, you snake lover!" James yelled back.
The game went on with both teams battling fiercely and trying to outscore each other. Threadway and Applewhite flew around encouraging their teams. Finally Gryffindor pulled away with a 10-point lead.
Since Severus, Lily, Alice, Sirius, Remus, Peter, Caddaric, Emily, and Irene had friends on both teams; they cheered whenever one of the teams made a goal.
Tav kept his eyes peeled for the Snitch and suddenly spotted a glint of gold near the Ravenclaw box and headed in that direction. He knew the Gryffindor seeker was following him so he started flying from side to side, making it impossible for her to swoop around him and grab the Snitch as she had done last year. He quickly flew down low and grabbed up the Snitch.
"And Slytherin has the Snitch!" The announcer yelled. "Slytherin wins the match
There was a roar from the Slytherin box and the friends jumped and cheered as Tav held up the Snitch. The Slytherin team whooped, surrounded Tav, giving him congratulatory smacks and then the team took a brief victory flight around the pitch.
"That was a good game, Sev," Lily said as they climbed down from their seats. She grabbed his hand to steady herself.
"Why don't we wait for Frank, Dorian, Tav, and Jane so we can congratulate them?" Severus suggested.
"Yeah," Caddaric agreed. "There was some really good flying today. Even Kendall thinks so."
Frank, Dorian, Tav, and Jane walked up. Frank shook their hands and said, "That was a victory well deserved. Congratulations!"
"I thought you guys had us; you flew our bums off!" Dorian said. "Congratulations on giving us a good fight."
They joined the rest of their friends and amidst congratulations they walked back with the large group of students of all ages and different houses.
"Those snakes cheated!" James said loudly to Daniel, Mary, and Lisa. "That's the only way they can win because they're dark!"
"Yes," Daniel agreed. "And our team's nothing but a bunch inept house elves!"
Tav and Dorian were walking behind a bunch of Slytherins and Ravenclaw. Tav leaned over and whispered something to Dorian who grinned, took out his wand, pointed at James and Daniel and said softly, "Calvus!"
James' and Daniel's hair suddenly disappeared completely. James noticed his head suddenly felt cold, reached up, felt it and then screamed, "Ahh!"
"Merlin help us!" Mary screamed. "You're both bald!"
"Who did this?" Daniel yelled, covering his head with his hands as the students around them started laughing and pointing at them.
Dorian and Tav blended in with some older Slytherins and left while the rest of the friends chuckled heartily as they walked towards the school.
Page ~*~*~*~* Break
Dumbledore was sitting behind his desk, reading a copy of the Evening Prophet when he heard his floo sound. He saw Charles head sitting in the flames sighed. He figured James would owl his father about the prank played on him after the match this morning. The only surprise was that it didn't happen immediately.
"What may I do for you, Charles?"
"Have you found out who did that spell on Jamie. Mavis is very upset at the thought of her son's beautiful hair disappearing and him being bald."
"Goodness, Charles. It wasn't anything Madam Pomfrey hadn't seen before and she was able to reverse the spell cast on James and Mr. MacTavish immediately."
"It doesn't matter. There's no reversing the humiliation Jamie suffered."
"What do you expect me to do? I'm certainly not going to confiscate everybody's wand to see who might have done it."
"You don't have to confiscate everyone's wand, just the Slytherins."
"I have no reason to confiscate anybody's wand, Charles. It was just a harmless prank and I imagine it was directed at James because he was being a very bad sport."
"Well, if you're going to let James be bullied and the object of ridicule and do nothing; I'm going to the board!"
"If you think they will listen to you, by all means." With that Albus shut off his floo and returned to reading his paper.
A/N: Please note that this fic is coauthored by both myself and Alethea27, so it does take a long time to write, so please be patient between updates as we both have lives an other fics in progress. However, we do appreciate you still R & Ring, and thank you!-Snapegirlkmf