Plot, new characters, new magical terms and abilities etc. are my intellectual property. If you want to borrow then please kindly ask. JK Rowling's characters and Wizarding Universe are all uniquely hers.
Summary: AU If he was the question then she was the answer to that question. Severus Snape tries to let go of his past while serving out the debt owed to Dumbledore.
Bring Me To Life by NativeMoon – REPOST with edits
Chapter 8: The Player Gets Played
Armando Fawcett sat in his office muttering to himself as he reviewed the latest round of test results on Angharad. He'd been coming in early at the crack of dawn for nearly a week to cross-match blood and DNA samples between her other unwilling patients he'd had over the years both in and out of St. Mungo's. He hated sacrificing sleep but coming in at such an ungodly hour meant that he could do as he pleased without the likelihood of being discovered.
He was handsomely rewarded – for the fourth day in a row the test results were the same.
'Extraordinary,' he gasped, holding up a test tube of her blood gazing at it with a look somewhere between awe and reverence. 'Absolutely extraordinary!'
Fawcett took a long drought of the black coffee he'd picked up on his way in before making some notes in the private file he was keeping on the girl.
After a few minutes of prodigious note-making found himself yawning before passing out cold.
Fawcett woke up and stretched.
'Better get some breakfast before my rounds,' he muttered as he glanced at the clock above his his filing cabinet. 'WHAT THE HELL?!'
According to the clock it was nearly 3pm.
The doctor jumped up and ran to his office door. A wave of his wand and the bog-standard security wards he'd set fell away.
He raced up to the Patrick Snooth Ward where his prize patients were and nearly collided with Matron Ballbricker, the Senior Nurse who was part of the management team for the Day Shift.
'Here you are, Doctor Fawcett,' she snapped as she thrust a large stack of blue folders into his hands. 'That's everything, just as you ordered. I don't understand the rush when we always...'
'The last of what?' he interrupted with a look of disdain. 'I didn't ask for these!'
'Now see here Doctor!' We have all had enough of this! All of the patients on your wards were discharged as you requested! You wanted copies of all the paperwork by three and as you can see it is now five past and...!'
'AGHARAD SERPENTARIUS IS GONE?!' Fawcett roared as he took the stack of folders and threw them at the nearby nurse's station, nearly hitting one of the assistants in the eye.
'Well of course she's gone! You spoke to her parents yourself and signed her out first thing this morning! Quite rude too, giving this place a worse reputation than it already has and...'
'I DID NO SUCH THING YOU BLITHERING IDIOT!'
'What is going on here?' came a cold, icy voice from behind Fawcett in a cut-glass Queen's English accent.
'Healer Geoffrey, Doctor Fawcett is now claiming to have not wanted all of the patients on his wards discharged! He seems to have forgotten the HELL he's put us all through today!'
'This STUPID WOMAN has only gone and...!'
'You forget who you are, Fawcett – and who I am,' Healer Lawrence Geoffrey, St. Mungo's most Senior Metaphysical Surgeon hissed. The emnity between the two had been the talk of the hospital for years, their mutual loathing set the moment Healer Geoffrey discovered he'd been lumbered with a pretentious snob & liar with very little medical acumen to recommend him.
'You also seem to have forgotten that you took it upon yourself to personally discharge each and every patient on your wards yourself this morning and if doing them all at once wasn't bad enough you just had to show off a bit for the Board members during their annual tour of the facilities. Shame it did nothing to answer the question of WHY this hospital was lumbered with all of those people for so long! Messrs Darkglass and Stonebender In particular have questions for you I daresay! I don't know what you've been up to but...'
'Enough of this,' Kingsley Shacklebolt said as he emerged from the nearest corridor beyond the nurse's station with a team of Senior Aurors and a Wizengamot Security Detail. 'You're coming with us, Doctor Fawcett.'
'Who are you and what in blazes are you doing with my things?!' Fawcett rasped as he spotted his personal folders for every patient he'd had from the Quidditch World Cup, including Angharad Serpentarius in Tonk's arms.
'Senior Aurors, here to take you in on the orders of the head of the department and the Wizengamot,' Kingsley answered as he and the rest of his team flashed their Ministry-approved badges.
'Good riddance to bad rubbish,' one of the nurses at the station whispered loudly.
'I WILL NOT!' Fawcett howled, reaching into a pocket.
'IMMOBULUS!' Eyre roared. A streak of silvery blue light shot from his wand and froze Fawcett in place.
'Oh well, at least he's relatively straight...' the little Auror snapped as he bound Fawcett with rope from the shoulders downwards and strapped him to a stretcher. He then levitated it out of the building surrounded by several of the security officers who worked for the Wizengamot directly.
'Will he be returning?' Matron asked carefully.
'You will definitely have three vacancies to fill,' Shacklebolt answered.
'Three? Who are the others?' Healer Geoffrey asked incredulously.
'Darkglass and Stonebender, the two Board members who hired him.' Tonks said idly.
'You have called for me, Armando? I trust it is a matter of grave importance considering the surroundings in which we now find ourselves,' the Headmaster said peering over his half-moon spectacles at the shackled doctor through the bars of a Ministry prison cell.
Fawcett knew that look all too well. He was in the deepest of shit and there was no way out. How he accounted for himself during these few minutes would determine if the The Greatest Wizard of the Age and the only one Lord Voldemort ever feared would throw him another lifeline.
'It's all a mistake; just a silly misunderstanding!' he spluttered feebly.
'You know Kingsley as well as I do; he is not in the habit of silly misunderstandings when it comes to his work. He has never made a mistake – ever. Neither has Scrimgeour.'
'There's a first time for everything and I'm telling you he's wrong! They are both DEAD WRONG!'
'So you haven't been passing yourself off as a fully-qualified Metaphysical Surgeon with fake certificates? You haven't been using St. Mungo's for unforgivable experiments on those unfortunate to have crossed your path? You haven't been holding vulnerable people against their will? You haven't been assuming the identities of others for illegal activities or feeding stories to The Prophet when it suited you? You don't have private files that reveal the sickening truth of the damage you have done all these years?'
'Now see here Headmaster – don't you get high-and-mighty with me! You have NO idea what you are turning your nose up at here and...!'
'"Hight and mighty"? Me? No, far from it my boy. Obviously I must bear a good part of the blame for you turning out to be one of the more reprehensible characters Hogwarts has ever produced despite allegedly being one of the best doctors in the Mediwizard Service. You have have had quite illustrious career for one so young. Awarded the Order of Merlin, First Class for several ground-breaking forays into research in your early twenties – research that had first been undertaken by Severus Snape as part of his N.E.W.T. exams in Potions and then post-graduate work. It should have been Severus who was lauded by the wizarding community and spoken of in awe; not the plagiarist cheat cowering in front of me.'
'You're every bit as nasty and dangerous as those you condem, Dumbledore – you always have been! It's so easy for you to slag me off NOW being on the Wizengamot as you are. THE DARK LORD WAS RIGHT ABOUT YOU: YOU ARE ADDICTED TO THE POWER YOU WIELD!'
Dumbledore drew up into the imposing fullness of his height and signalled for the guards.
'Defending that nefarious Slytherin trash Snape are you?!' Fawcett hissed.
'So it's "Dumbledore" now is it? That "nefarious Slytherin trash" was no less ambitious than yourself, Armando. But unlike you, Severus Snape had neither the inclination, talent, nor the opportunity to ingratiate himself with the right people at the Ministry and St. Mungo's; the sort who will quite happily look the other way so long as their interests are met.'
'I beg your pardon?'
'You owe Severus Snape, Armando. You owe him as much as, if not more than, the rest of us and I include myself in that. Only because of James Potter and Sirius Black bully him repeatedly and stealing his notebooks have you been able to make a name for yourself – and a handsome profit in the process.'
Fawcett went as white as a sheet and swallowed hard. There was no point in trying to lie to Dumbledore but he couldn't help wonder why the Head of the Wizengamot had never done anything about what he knew.
'Yes, I abused my power in persuading Severus he was sadly mistaken, amongst other things,' Dumbledore said. 'I covered up for you because I thought you would see the light and do what was right in the first war and because I selfishly thought you would prove to be a lot more useful than you were willing to be in the end. I was quite mistaken to do so – and the man In my employ and our world at large have paid far too heavy a price for it ever since. You could have stood to learn more from my Potions Master actually. Unlike him you were always so readable – and utterly predictable.'
Dumbledore said no more as the guards appeared to escort him out.
'Remind me to never get on your bad side Severus,' Arthur Weasley sighed as he and the Potions Master had one last cup of tea laced with copious amounts of Jack Daniels. 'I've seen some things in my time and had my fair share of adventure thanks to Dumbledore – but this was something else! There were a few moments where I damn near forgot that you weren't the real Dr. Fawcett!'
'I'd better check on Angharad,' Sebastian said as he moved his chair back and stood up. 'I don't want her to wake up without me being there to explain how she's ended up in a strange farmhouse in the middle of the Brecon Beacons...'
'That was quite a powerful Knock-Out Potion Fawcett was slipping her, on top of every thing else he was doing,' Snape said with anger-tinged weariness. 'I expect she will be relatively unconscious until mid-morning tomorrow.'
'I don't think he'll ever fully recover from this any more than she will,' Arthur said quietly after Angharad's brother left the kitchen. 'But I do know that he is very grateful for what you've done for the both of them. The other Heads of Houses certainly wouldn't risk so much no matter how much they claim to care about their students.'
There was no comment as Snape stared sullenly into the murky depths of his oversized tea mug.
'I don't mean to pry, honestly I don't,' Arthur continued carefully. 'But do be careful, Severus. Harmsworth has always done as he pleases at Hogwarts no matter how seemingly inappropriate. He gets away with it because he's a popular pretty-boy whom everybody likes and he brings in a lot of gold for the school coffers.'
'The Apothecary in Hogsmeade does a brisk trade in barely legal "Morning-After" and "Early Intervention" Tonics and other disgraceful compounds not worth mentioning thanks to him!' Snape spat. 'I AM NOT... I HAVE NEVER...!'
'You don't have to explain yourself to me Severus; I know you aren't like that at all. For what it's worth – I really do hope things work out between you and Miss Serpentarius in time. I understand the young lady is quite fond of you. Your actions, which I have been decidedly complicit in, leave me in no doubt as the the truth and depth of your affections for her.'
'Thank you for everything Arthur – your discretion and willingness to execute a Dark Glamour and pretend to be Angharad's mother guaranteed a successful outcome. I could not have managed all of this without you.'
'It was my pleasure and the least I could do for the poor girl. I'll wait a few days before letting slip to the children that Angharad was finally discharged in the company of her parents,' Mr. Weasley replied looking at his timepiece. 'It's time I head home. Let's have a catch-up before the new term starts.'
The two men shook on it before Arthur stepped outside and Disapparated.
Sebastian returned to the kitchen and found the Potions Master sitting alone, lost in his own thoughts.
'You're right – she... Oh, Mr. Weasley had to leave then I take it? I need to do something nice for him as a "thank you", he said.
'You are under no such obligation to either him or myself. How is you sister?'
'Out cold. I must've called to her and given her a good shake for a good few minutes but she is definitely out for the night, just like you said.'
'It is time I take my leave also. You know how to reach me for an emergency.'
'Professor... please don't go. I'd actually feel a lot better if you stayed with us at least for tonight. And I know...I know that my sister could do with seeing you. She really... Please stay.'
There was a moment of uneasy silence.
'With your permission, I would like to sit with your sister,' Snape said quietly.
Snape walked into Angharad's room and let out a breath he hadn't realised he was holding.
'I'll just sit this down over there,' Sebastian said as he crossed the room and place a small tray of sandwiches, biscuits and tea on the low table next to chaise lounge across from his sister's bed. 'I could do with a good sleep myself after all this, but call me if you need me.'
There was only the faintest of nods as Snape dropped his travel bag on the floor by the chaise and sat down. Mercifully there were plenty of pillows so he kicked off his boots, stretched out and pulled the blanket over him that Sebastian had unpacked. Angharad's brother lingered only for the briefest of moments before closing the door behind him and retreating to the opposite side of the single-story house.
There was still a few hours of sunlight left but within an hour both Sebastian Serpentarius and Severus Snape were both sleeping deeply, out for the night.