Author’s Notes: Thanks to my lovely beta, Phoenix. She works so hard to make this better.
Thank you to my wonderful reviewers. I am thrilled to have so much support.
There is a slight lemon flavor in this chapter. Be advised.
Disclaimer: Everything you recognize belongs to JKR. I am only playing with her brilliant creation. I am not profiting from this story in any way.
Remus arrived at the common room with Hermione after convincing her to leave the Astronomy Tower and excused himself when he didn’t see James or Sirius. He went to his room and found it empty. Fearing the worst, he opened Sirius’ trunk and sifted through the contents until he found their map.
Retrieving the Marauder’s Map from the trunk, he tapped his wand against it, saying, “I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.”
The ink appeared slowly, starting from the left and spreading to the right until the entire parchment was covered. He opened it up and finally located James and Sirius walking towards the Astronomy Tower. His eyes widened when he saw the name, Severus Snape, off to one side. The steps of James and Sirius didn’t slow, so Remus assumed that Severus was hiding. Suddenly, the dot representing Severus sprang to action tearing through the halls of Hogwarts while James and Sirius’ dots stayed stationary. Remus nearly panicked, thinking that Severus had surely killed them this time, before the dots began slowly moving. He watched for a moment until he decided that they were headed to the hospital wing.
He sighed heavily as he began folding the map. His eyes idly roamed the map as it got smaller with each fold. He suddenly opened the map by one folded section. The Gryffindor common room was displayed before him. And in the common room was someone named Hermione Granger.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Hermione sat in the corner, trying to avoid everyone as she practiced the Transfiguration assignment that Professor McGonagall has given them in class. She waved her wand, frowning. She eyed the book critically before waving the wand again. Nodding to herself, she jotted down a few notes on the parchment in front of her and closed the book.
She put her quill and her wand down on the table and reached to her right, retrieving the Potions book on the far side of the table, just as Remus came down the stairs and started towards her.
“Hey, Hermione,” he said cautiously. “How are you?”
She looked up at him wondering what had gotten into him. “Remus, you saw me ten minutes ago.” She frowned as he averted his eyes from her gaze. “What’s wrong with you?”
“Oh, nothing. I’m fine. I’m just wondering where James and Sirius are.” He still wouldn’t look at her.
She opened her mouth to speak, but was interrupted by Peter’s approach. Biting back the nasty comment on her lips, she looked back down at her books.
“Hey, Remus,” Peter said sitting down at the table. “Hey, Hermione.”
Hermione glanced up and muttered, “Hello, Peter.”
The smile on his lips faltered. “Well, I was just wondering if you knew where James and Sirius had got off to. They were supposed to be helping me with the Transfiguration assignment. I haven’t quite gotten the wrist movement down.”
“Well, maybe Hermione could help you. She seems to have gotten hers down already,” Remus said. “What do you say, Hermione?”
Hermione froze as she heard Remus volunteer her help to Peter. She had tried to sit in an out-of-the-way spot, but it seemed they were all insistent on trying to include her. She was just going to have to be a bit more blatant about distancing herself from them. In a harsh voice, she said, “No, I can’t help him, Remus. I need to work on my Potions essay. If you’ll excuse me, I am going to go somewhere quieter where I can study without being disturbed.” She picked up her books and walked away without another word.
“I don’t think she likes me, Remus,” Peter said as he watched her walk away.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Two days of blissful silence from Sirius later, Hermione was sitting in the courtyard reading over her History of Magic notes. It was a warm day, and she was not alone outside. There were a large number of students outside enjoying the sun before dinner and curfew. Most of them were not studying as Hermione was.
As she flipped through the pages, she heard shouting. Looking up, she realized that everyone who had been outside was gathered in one area. The shouting grew louder, and Hermione’s curiosity got the best of her. She put her notes inside her bag and stood up. She walked to the group of people and managed to make her way to the front of the crowd. What she saw enraged her.
James had cast a Body-Bind Curse on Severus and was methodically tearing his notes to shreds. He idly waved his wand and said, “Finite Incantatem.”
Severus sat up and lunged for his wand. He had his hands on it just as James yelled, “Confundus!”
Severus stilled and looked around, confused. James had cast the spell properly. Peter squealed and clapped as the crowd laughed. James smiled roguishly as Peter approached the befuddled boy before him. He kicked Severus in the stomach and laughed at the cry of pain from him.
Hermione had seen enough. She stepped forward shouting, “Finite Incantatem!” Severus’ disorientation disappeared. He looked up at James with rage on his face, but Hermione wasn’t done. “Expelliarmus,” she shrieked at Peter, flinging him face-first into the ground as his wand shot away. An unspoken command later, the wand was in her hand.
She whirled around to face James. “And you,” she spat. “Attacking him two to one? Does it make you feel better about yourself to gang up on someone?”
James crossed his arms and said casually, “It might interest you to know that Snivellus started this little fray. I was merely protecting myself.”
“Protecting yourself?” Hermione asked incredulously. “I fail to see how ripping his notes to shreds while Peter kicks him around qualifies as protecting yourself! Give me those parchment pieces, now!” Hermione demanded, holding out her left hand. Her right hand still held her wand defensively.
“And to think, you were sorted into Gryffindor,” James said scornfully, shoving the pieces into her hand.
“Maybe I was sorted into Gryffindor because I am not afraid to stand up to people who are harassing others. Even if I have to stand up to my own Housemates,” Hermione said evenly, tossing Peter’s wand to the ground.
Behind her, Severus had gathered the rest of his shredded notes and his wand. He stuffed the torn parchment into his bag and stood up.
Hermione backed up and said quietly, “Let’s go, Severus.”
Severus followed her without a word, and they left the jeering crowd for the relative safety of Hogwarts. They walked side-by-side into the library and sat down at a table in the back.
“Are you okay, Severus?” Hermione asked in concern.
“I’m fine. Give me my notes,” Severus said shortly, refusing to meet her eye.
Hermione looked at him dubiously. “I save your skin, and that’s all you have to say to me?”
“I didn’t ask for you to interfere in my affairs. I only followed you here because you had my notes in your hand,” Severus spat acidly.
“Well then,” Hermione said standing rigidly. “I will leave you to the impossible task of putting your notes together. I’ll have you know that I am the only one in school with notes as detailed as yours. And also the only one who might be willing to let you borrow them. But, of course, you don’t want me interfering in your affairs.” She turned to storm out of the Library. Her departure was halted when Severus caught her hand in his.
“Hermione,” he said quietly. “I’m sorry. I’m just not used to having anyone care about what happens to me. It’s… it’s new to me.”
She leaned down until their eyes were level and said, “Get used to it, Severus,” before kissing his cheek softly.
He stared at her, uncertainty splashed across his face, as she smiled, placed her notes on the table, and left.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
It was two days later, on Friday, before Hermione got her notes back from Severus. They had both arrived to Potions early from breakfast.
“Good morning, Severus,” Hermione said pleasantly.
“I have finished copying your notes,” he said, handing the neatly piled parchments back to her. His next comment was said a bit thickly, as if he didn’t often say it. “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome,” she beamed at him.
They sat in silence for a moment before Severus asked, “Are you going into Hogsmeade tomorrow?”
Hermione frowned. She hadn’t even thought about the Hogsmeade trips. She wondered if Dumbledore had thought of her not having a permission form. Surely, he wouldn’t expect one since she was not from this time.
“I don’t know,” she said honestly, shaking her head.
“Well,” Severus began tentatively. “If you don’t go… perhaps we could do some studying for the Transfiguration test together. I know it’s not until the end of next week, but I like to study ahead of time.”
Hermione’s mind whirled with delight. Is he asking me on a date? she wondered. It seemed that defending him had the effect she was looking for.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Severus watched Hermione’s face as he asked her to study with him during the Hogsmeade trip, but it remained impassive. Say yes, he willed. He was hoping to entice her into talking about her family. Things weren’t adding up, and he was determined to discover the truth about her.
“I like to study ahead of time, too,” Hermione said slowly. “It would be nice to have a study partner who cares about his grades as much as I care about mine.” Her smile gave her answer away before she said anything.
“Good,” he said. “Meet me in the library right after everyone leaves for Hogsmeade.” I’ve got you now, he thought with devious triumph, as their classmates filed in for the lesson.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
The next day couldn’t come fast enough for Hermione. Sirius had taken to talking to her again halfway through the day and had plagued her with saying things like, “I forgive you for hexing Peter and threatening James.”
His inane jokes about Remus wanting her attention grated on her nerves, and she was grateful when he disappeared with James, Remus, and Peter that night. James and Peter still weren’t speaking to her over the incident in the courtyard, but all Hermione cared about was finding a way to get Sirius to back off.
She fell asleep that night quicker than she expected and awoke early on Saturday. She was nearly finished eating as the Great Hall began filling up. The door opened, and Sirius walked in with his friends. Hermione took advantage of the crowds to sneak out the side door before he could see her.
“Thank God,” she breathed.
“For what?” a voice silkily asked.
Hermione let out a small squeal and turned around. “Severus,” she said. “You startled me! Why do you always sneak up on people like that?”
“Me?” he asked incredulously. “As I recall, you are the one who always seems to run into me.”
“I didn’t run into you just now,” Hermione said indignantly, enjoying the banter.
“Only because I just managed to keep from being run over by leaping out of the way,” he replied. The slight twitch at the corners of his mouth led her to believe that he was also enjoying the sparring.
“Oh, how very dramatic you are,” she said dryly. “As if you actually would have been flattened. Look at you! I only just come up to your shoulder.”
He looked as if he might actually smile when the door flew open and Lily burst through. “Severus, Hermione?” she asked with widening eyes.
It was only then they realized how close together they were standing. Severus had schooled a dark look on his face when the door had opened, and to the casual observer, it looked as if he was a predator and Hermione was his prey. Severus stepped back and turned around. Without another word, he walked down the hall, disappearing around a corner.
“Are you okay, Hermione,” Lily asked with concern. “Is he angry with you for helping him? I tried to help him once, and he called me a Mudblood in front of everyone.”
Hermione acted shocked to hear that while feeling rather guilty inside. She knew of that incident from Harry’s Pensieve experience. “Well, he was actually quite nice to me afterwards,” she said, mollifying her guilt with the truth.
“Just be careful. I used to be friends with Severus. He is a good one for hurting the people who care about him,” Lily said quietly, her eyes cast downward.
“I will be, Lily,” she promised. Changing the subject, she said, “Are you going back to the common room?”
“Yes,” Lily said, looking up. “Want to walk back with me?”
Hermione nodded, and they began walking in silence. Her conscience chose that moment to begin harassing her with logic again.
How come it’s all right to be nice to Lily and Severus, but you push everyone else away? Isn’t it just as dangerous to tamper with their lives as it is with the others? Hermione tried her best to ignore the nagging voice in the back of her mind. Hypocrite, it spat.
Hermione and Lily entered the common room and began discussing their Charms lesson. They debated for twenty minutes when Sirius, James, Remus, and Peter walked in.
“Hermione,” Sirius said loudly. “There you are!”
She cringed as Sirius immediately walked her way. “Are you coming to Hogsmeade today?” he asked as everyone in the common room prepared for the outing.
“No, I forgot to have my father sign the permission slip.”
“That’s too bad. You and Remus could have spent time together.”
Remus shot Sirius a death glare and finally spoke up. “Really, Sirius,” he said. “Hermione’s not stupid. She’d have to be blind not to realize you are flirting with her.”
“See that’s the problem with Remus. He doesn’t know how to woo a lady,” Sirius said as James, who had disappeared for the duration of the short conversation, dragged him from the common room.
Remus gave her an apologetic glance and followed after his friends.
Finally! She breathed a sigh of relief.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Severus was already in the library when Hermione arrived.
“Hello again,” she said, sitting down across the table from him. “How has your day been so far?”
“Wonderful,” he said sarcastically. “It’s only nine o’clock; what could have possibly gone wrong this early?”
His voice still held suspicion for her intentions, and his comments still stung from time to time, but since Hermione had helped him, he had been almost nice to her.
“It has had enough time to be terrible,” she said irritably. “One bad thing, and your day is ruined. If I had said, ‘Has your day been ruined yet?’ perhaps you would have answered without making a sarcastic remark.”
Severus chuckled softly at her words. She looked at him, shock evident on her face, and he said, “What, is it that surprising that I might actually laugh from time to time?”
“Actually, yes,” she said wryly.
He merely smirked at her as he pulled out his notes. He noticed that Hermione was still staring at him in bewilderment so he said, “Are you going to sit there gaping at me all day, or are we going to study?”
Her lips blossomed into a beautiful smile, and Severus felt his chest constrict. He had never seen anything so beautiful that was meant for him. Get a hold on yourself, Severus, he thought, feeling his trousers tighten. You are here for one reason and one reason only.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
“I’ll meet you at the Three Broomsticks for lunch,” James called to Lily as Remus tried vainly to get his friend’s attention.
“See you at lunch,” Sirius mocked, laughing as James punched his arm.
Remus sighed and yelled, “I’m trying to talk to you!”
Sirius turned to Remus with wide eyes. It was rare when Remus actually forced the attention to himself. “Well, what gives?” he asked, knowing that Remus wanted to share something important.
Remus glanced around at all the students milling about and said, “Let’s go somewhere more private.”
Remus turned and was followed by Sirius. James paused to grab Peter, who had been staring at a sixth year Hufflepuff girl.
The four friends huddled off to the side until Professor McGonagall’s attention was drawn to a pair of fifth year boys who had gotten into a scuffle.
As soon as her head turned, they tore into a wooded area where they could talk without being overheard.
“Okay, Remus. Tell us what’s going on,” James said, raking his hand through his already messy hair.
“Well, I was looking at the map the other day and something strange caught my attention.” James, Sirius, and Peter listened intently. “Hermione showed up on the map as someone named Granger.”
The last sentence was said as dramatically as he could muster.
“That’s what you dragged us out here for?” Sirius said incredulously. “You wanted to tell us that Hermione’s father is some other bloke?”
Peter and James began laughing at him with Sirius’ words.
“No, you don’t understand,” Remus said beseechingly. “She said something about something called… Slickease, I think, not being invented until next year. How would she know about something that hasn’t been invented yet? Think about it. She has been here for over a week and has yet to really open up to anyone.”
“Maybe her other father has a patent that’s not going to be public until next year,” James said through his laughter.
“Remus, you need to get more sleep,” Peter added, trying unsuccessfully to control his snickers.
Remus sighed as his friends turned and headed back for town, still laughing.
“I know there is something strange going on,” he muttered as he followed them.
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
Two weeks passed before Hermione received a note from Dumbledore asking for a meeting. It had been three and a half weeks since she had been sent to the past. She had met with Severus twice since their first study meeting. He was slowly but surely opening up to her. He had gone so far as to brush his fingertips against her cheek once after she had thanked him softly for studying with her. Sirius had stopped teasing her about Remus and was being pleasant rather than an annoyance.
She walked to the Headmaster’s office thinking about how well things were going. She reached the stone gargoyle guarding his office and realized that she didn’t know the password. As she stood contemplating what to do, it sprang to life and opened up.
She knocked on the door upon reaching it and entered when she heard Dumbledore’s voice give her permission. She closed the door softly and took the proffered chair, politely declining a sherbet lemon.
“Well, Miss Granger,” he said, using her real name. “Have you acclimated yourself to this time period?”
“Yes, sir. I think things are going well. My studies have not suffered,” she answered hesitantly.
“Wonderful, I’m glad to hear it,” he said smiling. “However, your interactions with Severus Snape are a matter of concern to me.”
Hermione braced herself. She had felt sure there was an ulterior reason for the meeting.
“Severus Snape is your teacher in your time. It wouldn’t be prudent to form a relationship with him. It could cause problems in the time line.”
“Sir,” she began. “Severus and I are merely study partners. I am not involved in a relationship with him.” Yet, she added silently avoiding eye contact with him. “I am well aware that I could wreak havoc on my future if I changed coming events.”
The Headmaster relaxed in his chair. “Of course,” he said. “You are a bright young lady, and I’m sure my future counterpart would expect no less of you.” Changing the subject abruptly, he said, “I have been analyzing the potion that placed you in this predicament. I have several avenues I wish to explore in my attempts to create a counter potion. I will keep you advised of my progress.”
“Thank you, sir,” Hermione said. “I appreciate your efforts.”
Dumbledore waved his hand saying, “Think nothing of it, my dear. Now, I believe you have a Potions class to attend in ten minutes, and I’m sure you don’t want to be late.”
~*~ ~*~ ~*~
The following Saturday, Hermione met with Severus again. They had decided to study together twice a week in addition to their Saturday meetings.
“No, Severus, I’m telling you that you are wrong. There isn’t a potion that will turn a human into an animal. Only Transfiguration and an Animagus form will allow it,” Hermione said tightly, beginning to feel heated.
“The Polyjuice Potion will turn a human into an animal,” Severus shot back argumentatively, a small smirk on his lips. He was enjoying aggravating her.
Hermione knew he was just trying to goad her into an argument. She was aware that he knew that the Polyjuice Potion was not made for such a use. Still, she spoke up. “It has disastrous results,” she said shrilly. “It is meant for human changes only. I should know; I brewed it in my second year.” She shut her mouth, suddenly, realizing that she had told her secret to her future professor. Not just her future professor, but the professor she had stolen from in order to brew the potion.
“You brewed Polyjuice in your second year?” he asked in disbelief.
“Well, um… Yes,” she finally admitted. It was too late to change her story now.
Severus looked at her with interest beyond discovering her secret. He knew she was intelligent, but to have brewed such a complex potion when she was only thirteen piqued his interest even more.
He stared at her aware of the fact that her breathing had quickened, and her chest heaved. Before he could think about it, he leaned over and kissed her full lips.
Hermione was initially startled, but began kissing him back quickly. Thrills shot through her body. His lips were soft and felt as though they were on fire. She was grateful they had chosen a table in the corner. It was obscured by the bookshelves.
The kiss lasted for a full minute before Severus pulled back. He stared at her, wordlessly, before shoving his books into his bag and walking out of the library. He was shaken. He had no idea that kissing could be so arousing, having never kissed a girl before. No girl had ever even wanted to be in the same room with him before. Hermione was different from anyone he had ever encountered. His thoughts of discovering her secrets were shoved back as he touched his lips, recalling their kiss.
Hermione sat in the library, frustrated beyond belief. He had kissed her, and then he had run away. She conceded that he had not actually run, but he had rather walked quickly.
He is unreadable even when he opens up, she thought in annoyance as she packed her bag.
She left the library wondering if she would ever be able to call the volatile Severus Snape hers. She walked down the hall absently and shrieked as a strong hand clamped over her mouth and dragged her into a dusty room. It was an unused storage closet.
She was beginning to panic when a silky voice whispered in her ear, “Long time no see.”
The hand unclamped, and she breathed throatily, “Severus.”
He kissed her hard, pinning her against the wall. His tongue plundered her mouth savagely. She moaned and pressed her body into his, feeling his erection straining against his trousers. Grinding her pelvis against it, she was rewarded with a low groan.
Rough hands tore her shirt off as he said, “Hermione, I’m not a well-liked person. If the others learn about us, you will be condemned. I won’t change who I am for you.” He nuzzled her neck, running his tongue along her jaw line. She shivered slightly. He lowered his hands to her bra and pinched her hard nipples through the lacy material.
“Severus,” she moaned breathlessly. “I don’t want you to change. I like who you are.”
He fumbled for the latch of her bra for a moment before finding it. As he worked the clasps, he said, “You don’t really know me and yet you say that? You will likely regret your words once you get to know me better.” He pushed her bra straps down her arms and tossed it to the floor. He lowered his mouth to her breast and licked a hard, pink peak. A heady rush of pleasure ran through her body as he began suckling her nipples. His sensual hands ran over her body.
“I know you better than you realize,” she said in a low moan, her hands tangled in his lank hair. “I will never regret my words.” She cried out as his hands ran down to the top of her skirt.
Suddenly pushing her away he said, “No, not like this.” He whirled around and left her alone, again.
Hermione sighed. Being with Severus was going to be harder than she thought.
It All Comes Down To Time by JenKM1216