My Little Prince

Chapter 21

Good Advice And In Time Or Too Late?

For the next week Severus avoided Harry completely, deeply conflicted on what to do. He and a few of his subjects had gone to the Dursley's. It was there Severus had found out just how badly Harry was abused, he doubted Remus knew the full extent or nothing would have stopped the werewolf from killing them. In his anger he had drained Petunia and Vernon dry, their son luckily for him had not been home at the time. Severus had been too angry to think rationally, the bond was strong, and also very deep. Without the parents, perhaps the boy had half a chance to turn into a respectable young man. Of course he couldn't let the Dursley's be found in such a manner, it would point straight at him. He'd burnt their bodies beyond recognition, and the house with it. He desperately wanted his mate, but his human half knew without a doubt he wouldn't truly hold his heart if he continued down this path.

Severus stood there brooding amongst the unmoving portraits of his ancestors, if there was ever a time he wished for the portraits to be active it would be now. He wanted someone to talk to, since he was so conflicted himself right now, he could use someone not invested in the union between Harry and himself.

"Do you know what your great grandfathers deepest regret was?" asked Alfred stepping forward beside the current Lord Prince, he didn't look a day over seventeen years old. Most would be astounded to learn his real age, which nobody actually knew, but he was one of the oldest vampires in the United Kingdom. He had been advisors to the Prince's for generations, his wisdom knew no bounds.

"No," replied Severus, Alfred had returned to the United Kingdom when Severus had come forward with the intention of claiming his rightful place. It had been he who taught Severus everything he needed to know about his inheritance. Although most of it was how to talk, convince people, and their ways, since Severus was very good at duelling there hadn't been able much Alfred could teach him in that regard.

Alfred stepped up to Artemis' portrait, gazing at the man with exasperated fondness and sadness. "He did pretty much the same thing you've done with Harry. Maria's parents were ecstatic at the thought of furthering their status, back then they weren't known very well. Plus they only had a girl; they weren't able to get pregnant again to have an heir. I think part of Maria Prince had loved Artemis. Unfortunately being forced into marriage isn't always the way to go about it, having a child so young surely didn't help either. I think Artemis got the shock of his life when Maria refused to become a vampire and fully bond with him. They remained together until Maria was thirty one; she stayed mostly for her son I think. She left shortly after his seventeenth birthday using the Goblins to annul their marriage. Artemis had me watch over her, to ensure no harm befell her. He tried often to woo her, but she grasped onto her freedom and continued to deny him. She re-married three years afterwards, and had a girl."

Severus gazed stoically at the portrait feeling even more conflicted.

"Of course what I speak of was the norm back in the day, parents giving the rights of marriage to a prospective suitor. Of course vampires weren't looked too kindly upon back then, not that they are widely accepted now. It's the Prince name that's enabled the line to continue." said Alfred.

"What are you saying? I should let Harry go and have him killed by the Dark Lord?" sneered Severus.

"Here I was thinking you were smart Severus," said Alfred wryly, "There is more than one way to skin a cat."

"What do you suggest?" asked Severus quietly.

Alfred stared at Severus, really seeing him since they begun their conversation. He could see the concern and fear in his eyes, he'd never seen the man vulnerable. The vampire had been stoic ever since he'd been called in by his parents to help him adjust to his new life. He was a fast learner; never let emotions rule him, a hell of a fighter and not someone even he wanted to mess with. He normally thought things through and when decided he usually stuck to his guns.

"Why not speak to your grandparents?" asked Alfred leaning against the wall.

"I'd rather not," said Severus honestly.

"I am not surprised," said Alfred, no doubt they would disapprove with the way Severus had chosen to go about things.

Severus threw Alfred a droll glare, he knew without saying anything further Alfred knew why he was reluctant. His relationship with his grandparents had been stiff at first, little wonder his parents hadn't exactly been hands on, or rather even pretended to give a shit. His grandparents were polar opposites of his parents, they were affectionate, asked him things about his life, exam grades, made sure he knew they were sorry for not being in his life. In other words they were trying to make up for the past eighteen years of absense.

"You know Harry better than I do." said Alfred, he had only been back at the castle a day, and had not yet met the new Lords mate. From the things he'd learned though he'd been utterly baffled. Considering what he'd done to his mates Muggle family emotions were running deeply.

"Unfortunately I don't," said Severus, "I can't say I blame him really, the happiest I've seen him was when his family visited." much to his consternation, it had taken everything to stop him demanding they leave. Like Remus had said, he understood Severus' need to be near his mate, and be his sole focus of his attention. It didn't help knowing exactly what Harry had been through at the Dursley's for ten years. It was little wonder he didn't trust anyone, and was reluctant to get close.

"Then give him both, his family and his mate." said Alfred. "It's not as if there isn't enough room here."

Severus grimaced at the thought of the werewolf living in his home.

"Then begin the courting, he is definitely the youngest mate I've encountered." confessed Alfred, at least most of the others had been officially adults in the magical world. "I certainly would love to meet him Severus, with your permission of course." for the first time in the conversation deferring to Severus as the Lord Prince and not an equal.

"You can," agreed Severus, he trusted Alfred impeccably; he also trusted his judgement which was why he was even considering letting Lupin come here. No not just come, but actually stay on a more permanent basis. It would give Harry someone to talk to about the bond, since according to Lupin it was scaring him. What kind of sixteen year old boy hadn't experimented by that age? Only he could be mated to a boy who was more stubborn than him.

"Thank you, Severus." said Alfred honoured.

"He's in the library," Severus told him, Harry was always in the library. He shouldn't have been placed in Slytherin; he was the most Ravenclawish boy he'd met. Then again Harry might just be going there to avoid him, not that it had been a chore for the past week, since it had been him avoiding Harry.

"Aren't you coming?" asked Alfred curiously.

"No," said Severus, "I have a few calls to make."

"You are doing the right thing Severus, nine times out of ten, it never works out asking someone to choose between their family and a lover." said Alfred, placing his hand on Severus' shoulder, giving it a reassuring squeeze before he ambled off. He didn't need to know where Harry was to find him; right now he was the only human in the castle.

Alfred entered the library, getting the first view of the mysterious new mate. If he could breathe, it would have been knocked out of him. While the Princes had been blessed with strong magic, and their vampire inheritance for generations (minus Eileen) they hadn't been the most desirable people in looks. Harry was stunning, his green eyes stood out in the green cloak he wore right now. By Merlin if he wasn't as straight as an arrow he would be all over him, no wonder Severus was as possessive as he was.

"Hello," said Alfred.

"What do you want this time?" asked Harry tiredly, looking up from the book he was pretending to read irritated.

"This time?" enquired Alfred grinning in amusement, yeah, unfortunately in a huge castle, it was still impossible to be alone.

"Sorry," said Harry grudgingly going back to his book, his eyes never left the middle of it. Truth be told he was just sitting there thinking about everything. He didn't understand his own feelings, he hadn't seen Snape in a week, he should be grateful for it. Unfortunately it wasn't the case at all; he was oddly enough feeling hurt by it. Of course he refused to dwell on it, choosing instead to bury his feelings and snap at everyone.

"That is a good book, you have a desire to be an Auror?" enquired Alfred taking a seat opposite Harry, watching him closely.

"No, I want to get a Mastery in defence and be a healer," admitted Harry, lowering the book again.

"That will keep you busy for a few years," said Alfred.

Harry merely scoffed.

"Feeling claustrophobic?" asked Alfred with a known look in his eyes.

Harry stared at the man, before admitting the truth, "Yes."

"Rose felt the same way," said Alfred grinning in amusement.

"Rose?" asked Harry quizzically.

"Severus' grandmother," replied Alfred.

"His grandmothers alive?" Harry asked gaping.

"Indeed she is she's a lot like you, Rose loves reading, in fact within three years she had read everything in this library." said Alfred.

"Really?" said Harry smiling slightly.

"Oh yes, of course, but Glen was extremely protective of her, as you know all those with creature blood are with their soul mates. He learned in time that she could take care of herself, it was amusing to watch." confessed Alfred.

"Glen…his grandfather?" summarised Harry.

"Yes, no doubt you will meet them soon." said Alfred, "They usually come at this time of the month to see him."

"Why don't they stay here?" asked Harry.

"They remain at Prince Manor, this is mostly used as a base, where vampires comes if they are threatened, wishing to join the coven, to go on missions and protect the current lord. Since they are no longer in power, they don't have to, and to be honest I think they were glad to be able to have some privacy." responded Alfred smirking in amusement.

"I can understand that," snorted Harry.

"It's always a shock, the lack of privacy, even Severus hated it at the beginning." replied Alfred.

"He did?" asked Harry surprised.

"Yes, he hexed them a few times, but they kept coming back, it wasn't until he was attacked that he realized the dangers of being Lord Prince." answered Alfred gravely. "Severus is a hell of a dueller but even wouldn't stand a chance against three fully fledged vampires."

"What happened?" enquired Harry. Not sure what to think, it seemed he was finding out more and more about him lately. Between Remus, Corin, Storm and now this vampire, it was as if they were trying to manipulate him to accepting Snape.

"To be honest, he was actually doing not bad fighting the three of them off, but there's no doubt he would have lost should the fight have continued. Corin, Storm and Langdon and myself, if I remember correctly." said Alfred. "I know its difficult now, but in time I truly believe you will grow to love it here."

Harry's green eyes flashed in bitterness - he didn't think so.

"I am sorry, how remiss of me, my name is Alfred Murphy. It's nice to meet you, Harry." said Alfred holding his hand out.

"You too," said Harry, to his surprise he actually meant it. Shaking the vampires hand he smiled slightly before withdrawing his hand.

"I am going to Diagon Alley to pick up a few things, would you like to accompany me?" asked Alfred.

"Will he let me?" enquired Harry his eyes nevertheless lit up.

"His name is Severus, you have every right to be annoyed with how he handled the situation, but he truly felt what he was doing was the right thing. With Dumbledore and the Dark Lord Voldemort after you, nowhere is truly safe. Yet here surrounded by us you are safest than anywhere else. He is also your mate, that deserves some respect." said Alfred, he was an old soul, and didn't like disrespect.

"Sorry," said Harry quietly, his voice hesitant as he sank into his seat feeling contrite.

"You shouldn't be, one day if you accept this life, you will be ruling by Severus' side. Which means you can do anything you like without having to apologise. We are your subjects Harry, not the other way around, never let anyone make you feel inferior without your consent." said Alfred seriously.

"Eleanor Roosevelt," said Harry his lips twitching, it wasn't something he expected anyone to know in the magical world. With the exception of Remus, who actually spent a lot of his time in the Muggle world looking for him when he was younger.

"I'm impressed," said Alfred, "Shall we go?"

"Are we?" asked Harry surprised.

"Of course, Corin and Storm have already informed Severus, they will of course be coming with us." said Alfred.

"Alright," said Harry, standing up, placing the book on the chair feeling excited despite the fact he was going with three vampires he didn't know very well.

"Is there anything you'd like Harry?" asked Alfred as he finished his own errands. All potion ingredients bought the cauldrons, new stirrers, vials bought. Been to the book store and got the five new reserved books as well as books for defence training for Masteries, healers and Medi-wizards for Harry. Severus had given him the thumbs up to buy Harry whatever he wanted.

"I wouldn't mind some ice cream." admitted Harry.

"Then lets go," said Alfred waiting in line at the shop.

"I didn't bring any money," said Harry when he realized he had absolutely nothing with him.

"Don't worry, it's on Severus," said Alfred waving it off.

"I'd rather not," murmured Harry.

"You believe he's trying to buy your affection?" guessed Alfred.

"Isn't he?" replied Harry sarcastically.

"No, its part of the tradition of courting, haven't you read the book?" asked Alfred stepping forward as the line moved.

"No, not really…reading it will make it more real." sighed Harry feeling all kinds of stupid. Maybe he should read the book, that was Remus now him commenting on it.

"You must be the first mate that didn't take full advantage of the Prince fortune to get whatever your heart desires during the courting process." Alfred commented wryly.

"I've never cared about money, not having it growing up does that to you." admitted Harry quietly.

"I can understand that," nodded Alfred, "I too grew up without money. I assume you do not want the broomstick Severus asked to get you?"

"A broomstick?" asked Harry perking up.

"I'll take that as a yes?" questioned Alfred smirking wryly.

"I…" murmured Harry, groaning "Yes." cursing inwardly for caving. He loved flying, loved watching the game even more, but had no desire to play quidditch unless it was a friendly game amongst friends.

Severus sat in contemplation, his fingers at his pursed lips deeply troubled. So far nothing else had worked, if bringing Lupin here got Harry to open up, surely it would be worth it? Alright then, he would do it, the things he had to do to get his mate was ridiculous. Kneeling down, he flung the Floo powder into the fire, and stuck his head in. What he saw caused Severus a great deal of concern. Remus Lupin lay spread eagle on the floor, wounded badly and maybe even dead.

"Selvic, Cenric here now!" said Severus quickly, his mind putting in a plan of action.

"My Lord?" they chorused together already in front of him. Selvic was supposed to be on leave, but he had remained, since this was the safest place to be at the moment.

"We are leaving, now." said Severus stepping into the flames, the others immediately followed him as they were whisked away from Prince Castle.

They were spat out in a small but well kept flat, or at least it had been at some point, now it looked like hell. The walls were covered in burns and blackness associated with miss hit spells. Severus ran over to Remus, as the others had his back, guarding him with their life. Severus held his fingers at Remus' throat, and found he was still alive.

"Silver, he's been poisoned." said Selvic.

"Yes, he has." said Severus, picking up the werewolf despite his stink and as if he didn't weigh anything.

"Let's get back," said Severus, he was glad Selvic had come; he was one of the few with healing experience.

Stumbling through the Floo, Severus immediately laid him on the floor, as Selvic began to scan him. Selvic read the results, and realized how bad it was. They couldn't use a spell, it wouldn't remove it fast enough, he was injured enough as it was. They had no choice, he was going to have to suck it out, as disgusting as it would be, at least he wouldn't want to drink him. Werewolf blood was utterly disgusting, nobody, not even a starving Vampire would willingly drink it.

"Stand back, you might want to erect a silencing spell." said Selvic.

"REMUS!" yelled Harry entering the room, freezing in horror at the sight before him.

Then Remus screamed in agony as the vampire began to remove the silver that had been inserted into his wound.

"STOP IT!" screamed Harry running at the vampire, getting the wrong impression.

Severus immediately picked up his mate, removing him from the room as he continued to scream and fight against him. As soon as they were out of the room, silence descended upon the hallway, ominously so.

"What have you done?" choked Harry still fighting against him.

"Calm down, he has silver in his wound, this is the only chance he has of survival, we are not hurting him." said Severus before repeating himself two more times until Harry had stopped fighting him. He couldn't lie to Harry and tell him everything was going to be alright. Because he didn't know if that was true himself, he belated realized this was as close as he had gotten to Harry since his arrival.

"They are doing everything they can, Harry. I promise you that much." said Severus rubbing Harry's back as he continued to tremble violently in his arms.

Harry continued to tremble and cry into Severus' chest, terror with the likes he'd never known consumed him whole. Gripping onto the potions master, since there was nothing else to hold onto feeling strangely comforted by it. He couldn't lose his dad, not now not ever, six years wasn't enough time.

Alfred moved away decided to visit the kitchens - there was no way Harry was in the mood for Ice cream now, no point in it going to waste.

Time seemed to stop, as they remained there just waiting on any news from the healer vampires.

There we go the next chapter of My Little Prince...After weeks of being blocked this chapter actually wrote itself out pretty easily! will remus survive? will Dumbledore be responsible? if so did he do it himself or get an order member to do his dirty work? or was it death eaters? will harry return to Hogwarts without dumbledore there? as Death eaters mairacolously turn up dead? as severus dispatches all the threats to his mate while waiting on Voldemort coming out to the open? or will Dumbledore survive to witness it and can do nothing as he and his order are forgotten as the vampires get the work done? R&R PLEASE!