J.K. Rowling still owns it.


"Severus?"

"Yes?"

"Is Simon up from his nap yet?" Hermione was walking back and forth placing items in a large bag.

"I think so; I thought I heard some shuffling in his room a bit ago. Why?"

"Would you go see? I promised if he'd take a nap, I would take him to the Black Lake for a swim."

"I thought it was cloudy earlier?"

"It was, but now it's rather nice out actually." Hermione was pottering about in the sitting room looking for a book. Severus got up from the sofa and went to Simon's bedroom. In a moment, he and Simon entered the living room.

"Mummy!"

"Did you have a good nap?" She placed a few towels and some toys in the bag.

"Yes. Daddy said you were going to take me to the lake."

"Yes I am. James and Lily will be there, too." Hermione looked over at Severus who, of course, sneered at the mention of the Potter children.

"Will Daddy come, too?"

"I don't know, why don't you ask him?"

Simon Snape was 5 years old now. He was his father in miniature except for his nose which belonged to his mother, something his father was grateful for. Simon's hair was long and black like Severus'. Simon would only let his mum trim it, never cut it. If Severus wore it tied back, then so did Simon. If Severus wore it loose, then so did Simon. Simon would only wear black robes or if going to his muggle grandparents home, black muggle clothes.

In his little world Simon had his mummy, who smelled nice, had long hair that reached to her bottom, and would let him play, sing, read, and do all sorts of things with her. He also had his daddy, who was tall and had hair like his, and smelled like something cooking. He didn't do the things his mummy did, but Simon knew that when it was just him and Daddy, his Daddy would hold him and read to him, press kisses to his head, and let him come into his lab and play with an old cauldron and stirring rod. Usually he had just some water and old dried potions ingredients but sometimes Severus would twiddle his fingers over the "potion" and it would turn into Simon's favorite pumpkin juice.

Simon also had his Auntie Ginny and Uncle Harry. Auntie Ginny took care of him during the day when mum and dad taught school. His Uncle Harry taught flying. Simon had fun playing with James and Lily, and Auntie Ginny had another baby in her belly.

"Daddy?"

"Yes, son?" Severus secretly felt a thrill each time he spoke the word, 'son'.

"Mummy and I are going swimming today. Would you come with us?"

"Oh, I don't know. Isn't too cold out?"

"Mummy said no."

"Isn't almost time for dinner?"

"No."

"I don't know how to swim." Severus said with a twinkle in his eye. He loved to play this game with Simon to see just how many questions he would answer before he stamped his little foot, sighed and went to his mother. Simon did not know that when he did this, he so reminded Severus of Hermione when she was in a temper and Severus loved Hermione in a temper. Hermione had caught onto his little game and although she would occasionally stamp her foot and sigh exasperatedly, she knew that if she began to kiss Severus, the questions would stop.

"Yes, you do daddy." said Simon exasperatedly.

"No, I don't. What would happen if the giant squid got me?"

"Mummy would hex it."

"Your mummy can do anything, can't she?"

"Yes!"

"All right, tell mummy if she wears her green bathing suit, I will come swimming as well."

Simon scowled. He didn't see why mummy had to wear the green suit. He only had his black one and that seemed fine enough for him.

Severus found the green swimming suit showed Hermione's still trim figure off to a 'T' and it enthralled him to watch her lithe figure moving in it. He was feeling a bit randy today and hoped the swim would tire Simon out enough for an early bedtime.

The little family made its way to the lake on the grounds of Hogwarts. Each was dressed in a light robe to be removed before getting into the water. They saw that the Potter's were at the lake already and Simon ran to catch up with James and Lilly.

Severus really did know how to swim, he just didn't like it. He would wade deep enough to allow Simon to feel as though he were swimming before heading back to the shore. Hermione was the one who would teach Simon his strokes and to float. Severus watched his wife and son as they played a bit before Hermione had Simon floating about. He watched Hermione fondly; he thrilled at watching her even after six years of marriage. Before long, Hermione joined Severus on a blanket while they kept an eye on Simon who was playing near the edge of the lake with the Potter children.

Severus leaned over to his wife and kissed her cheek.

"What brought that on, Severus?"

"Your green bathing suit, minx."

Hermione smirked. "I wondered. Why did you ask me to wear it?"

"Because you look fetching in it, and I am feeling like I want to fetch you." Severus leaned further over and placed an open kiss on her shoulder. "Gods woman, you taste divine."

"I taste like lake water more like." She turned to kiss Severus. Their lips met and opened to catch each others tongues.

"We'd better stop." Hermione breathed.

"Why?"

"Because Simon is near the water!"

Severus snorted and replied. "I will finish that kiss later."

"I look forward to it." Hermione said with a smile.

After a while, Hermione decided it was time to return to their quarters. As Simon bobbed along ahead of them, Hermione and Severus talked quietly. They were interrupted by Simon however.

"Mummy?"

"Yes, Simon?"

"Auntie Ginny has a baby in her tummy, right?"

"Yes, she does."

"Did you have me in your tummy?"

Hermione and Severus looked at each other. "Yes."

"Did Auntie Ginny have James and Lily in her tummy too?"

"Yes Simon, she did."

"Can you get more than one baby in your tummy?"

By this time, they had reached their quarters and Severus told Simon to run along and change his clothes. When he had left the room, he turned to Hermione.

"What will we tell him?"

"I am hoping by him changing his clothes he will be distracted and we won't have to."

Hermione was right. When Simon came out in his fresh clothes he was apparently starving. Severus offered to read him a book while Hermione fixed a snack. The afternoon wore on and soon it was time to go to the Great Hall for dinner. The headmistress required the entire staff and family eat supper in the Great Hall each Sunday. The children had a small table behind the staff table with a house elf to watch over them so things didn't get too rowdy. After dinner, the three Snapes made their way back to their rooms where Simon was implored to go get ready for bed. Both Hermione and Severus helped tucked him into bed and sat down on either side of him. Sunday tradition for the family was for Severus to read to both of them for a while.

"Mummy?"

"Yes, Simon?"

"Can you get more than one baby in your tummy?"

"Yes, you can."

"Will you? James said he got Lily from his mum's tummy and now they are getting another brother. How come I don't have a brother or sister yet?"

Severus looked at Hermione. Her eyes were saddened as she tried to frame an answer to Simon's question yet not betray her disappointment. He nudged into her thoughts "Pet, it's all right to be sad"

"I know Severus. My dream was to give you at least a son and a daughter, you know that."

"I do, but I have you and Simon, both healthy and whole; I need no more."

Hermione smiled at Severus and reached for his hand. He took it and interlaced their fingers together. Hermione spoke:

"When I had you in my tummy I fell down the stairs. The medi-witches took you out of my tummy but falling made it so I wouldn't be able to have another baby grow there."

"Oh. So I can never have a brother or sister?"

"Well, no, not from my tummy."

"Oh."

Severus interrupted before another line of questions they weren't ready to answer began. "It's time for me to finish our story about the hobbits."

Severus' deep baritone had the hypnotic effect he and Hermione had hoped for and soon, Simon was asleep. Quietly they left the room heading to the sitting room. They settled together on the couch in front of the fire. Severus pulled Hermione to the crook of his arm. "Are you all right?"

"Yes. I admit his questions make me wishful. Seeing Ginny pregnant is not easy for me."

"If I had a time turner, I'd go back and change that day, you know that."

"I know." She sat thinking. "Severus, had you considered other children before the accident?"

"I admit that I was a bit stunned by your pregnancy never figuring I'd ever be a father. I hadn't thought about having other children. You know that just having a wife was something I thought I'd never have."

"Mmm."

"I would not have been averse to more children with you."

Hermione sighed. "We've never really talked about it, have we?"

"I didn't want to create any feelings of inadequacy in regard to your no longer being able to have children. I didn't want you to think I blamed you or anything."

"Oh, love, I know you wouldn't. But you know there are other options for having other children. Surrogacy or adoption for example."

"Hermione, do you want another child?"

"We both grew up as only children. When I was younger I often wondered why I didn't have a brother or sister, but the benefits of being the only child were enough for me not to be overly anxious about it. When I got older my mother explained how much trouble she had becoming pregnant. After my time at Malfoy manor I was certain I could never become pregnant. Simon was a most pleasant surprise."

"That he was. You know about my childhood and why I was an only child. What is surrogacy?"

"Some couples who can't have children opt to have another woman carry a baby for them."

Severus frowned. "How does that work?"

"They would take an egg from me and fertilize it with your sperm and then implant the fertilized egg into the uterus of the surrogate."

"Ah. "

"It can be costly, and I know from reading there can be many legal issues if a contract is not spelled out exactly as who has what rights."

"My gut instinct is to say no to that option. What about adoption then? Is that something you would consider?"

"I admit I have thought about it. What do you think?"

"Hermione, if you truly want to have another child, then I would be willing to consider the options. I need time to think about it though. Please?"

"Of course love. Any decision we make would make a huge change for us. I think we both need to think about this."

Severus leaned over and kissed Hermione's temple. "Now…..about that bathing suit."

Hermione giggled, stood up, and began walking away. "Come fetch, Severus."


Hermione's emotions in this story and at least one more are mine. Two years after the birth of my son we decided to have another (hey, the first one worked out okay, we had the tools to do so around the house, why not?). I was devastated to learn that I would not be able to have more children without a great deal of costly medical intervention. Secondary infertility is a condition that many woman quietly suffer because most of the medical focus seems to be on women who are unable to conceive a child at all. I won't ride my bandwagon here. Due to the nature of my condition, I have ridden an emotional roller coaster of guilt, jealousy, etc. Surrogacy, adoption, and foster parenting are all issues my husband and I discussed and made decisions about. I will tell you that I am so thankful for my handsome, intelligent, 20 year old son who is witty and drives me crazy all at the same time and he knows very well he is to take care of his mother in her old age.