Unexpected Truce

A Wedge Though A Family

Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter, though I wish I did.

A special thanks to The Lonely God With a Box for beta'ing my story.

A/N: Here is chapter 6. Enjoy! :)

Chapter 6

Severus and Minerva was just finishing their third cup of tea when the floo flared up.

“Minerva,” Poppy quietly said. Her head in the fire.

“Poppy,” Minerva said getting up. “What's wrong? Why are you whispering?”

“Albus is here talking to Harry,” She answered. Her voice still low. “He's going to send him back to those dreaded Dursleys. He can't go back there.”

“Step back,” Severus said walking towards the hearth.

Poppy stood up just as Severus walked out of the hearth.

“Is he still in there?” Severus asked in a low voice.

Poppy nodded, and Severus walked out of Poppy's office. He saw the Headmaster sitting with his back towards the doorway and Harry was clutching his transfigured robes, the teddy bear, to his chest hanging on it for dear life. Severus narrowed his eyes and took a deep breath. He knew dealing with the Headmaster was going to take every bit of Occlumency that he could use.

“I see your awake, Potter,” Severus said making his presence know to the other two wizards in the room.

“Yes,” Albus answered. “I was just telling Harry how he worried us, after taking his time sleeping in like that.”

Severus looked at Harry and saw the hurt and shame in his face. With out Legitimizing the Boy-Who-Lived, Severus knew that statement hurt him. It hurt him deep.

“And your timing is perfect, Severus,” Albus said taking Severus out of his muse.

“I'm sorry,” Severus said. “Perfect time for what?”

“I was just telling Harry here, that he would have to go back to his relative's house.”

“And,” Severus drawled. “What does that have to do with me?”

“I want you to take him back.”

Utter shock came across Severus' face for a split second before he schooled his expression. One look at Harry and the shock and hurt on his face was all telling. He did not want to go back there.

“Please, sir,” Harry begged in a whisper. “Please don't send me back. I'll do anything.” His voice was so low that neither professors heard the boy. “Please sir. I'll do anything. Please don't send me back there. I'll prep anything for potions. I'll wash all your filthiest cauldrons.”

At first Severus and Albus didn't hear Harry, but when he started speaking about what he would do if they would let him stay at the school. Severus realized that Harry was more talking to Severus than Albus.

“Potter....”

“Please, Professor,” Harry looked up at Severus for the first time. His eyes pleading what his mouth could not. Severus knew that it would not be good if he sent Harry back. “I'll do any and every disgusting thing you use for detentions. I clean every disgusting phial, just please, please don't send me back.”

Harry's green eyes filling with un-shed tears. It was moments like this that Severus was thankful for his skills in Occlumency. His facial expressions did not betray what he was feeling on the inside.

“It will be so much worse if I go back,” Harry mumbled in the bear's head. “I don't think I can take it anymore. He might...” Harry trailed off and completely buried his face in the bear. He could not understand why this bear was giving him so much comfort, but it was. And it was actually really nice. It was something about the way the bear felt, and smelled that was just so calming to Harry. If he could just shut the world out and stay with this bear, that he knew he was way to old for but right now did not care for one single moment, it would be just fine with him.

Well that statement surprised Severus. Could there be more to what was going on at that dreaded place than just a few bruises. Surely they haven't harmed the boy more than physically. They better not have, Severus thought.

“Harry,” Albus said sitting down on his bed. “I know that you think I don't want you here, but that is not the case.”

“Then let me stay,” Harry voice was harsher than he really wanted it to be.

“Potter,” Severus chastised.

“Sorry sir,” Harry put his head back down. Harry wondered why Snape had to be there. It was bad enough that Professor Dumbledore would not let him stay. It was worse that his most hated Professor would be the one to send him back to those Dursleys. Oh why did he have to be here, Harry thought.

“Harry,” Albus said bring Harry to the present. “Severus is going to take you back home.”

“Headmaster,” Severus stated. “I will...”

“Step out into the corridor with me,” Albus said cutting Severus off. “We'll be right back, Harry.”

Harry didn't lift his head or acknowledge that anyone had said anything.

Severus stepped out of the Infirmary with Albus in tow.

“Headmaster,” Severus began.

“Severus you will take Harry back to Surrey.” the Headmaster's voice left no room for argument. Severus blinked at Albus. “Need I remind you of what you are to do?”

“No, Headmaster,” Severus sighed. “All will go as you planned. Nothing has changed.” Severus took a deep breath and let it out. “I will escort Mr. Potter back to his relatives.”

A smile graced Dumbledore's lips and a twinkle that had been absent all afternoon was back in full force. “Thank you, Severus. I always knew that I could count on you, son.” Albus walked back into the Infirmary.

Severus looked at Albus, incredulously. Son. When has Albus ever called him that. Never. So why now? Then Severus' next thought went to his mother. He sighed. This was not going to be good. Severus sighed again and walked into the Infirmary after Albus.

When he got inside, he saw Harry was still clutching that bear for dear life.

“Potter,” Severus voice was as stern as ever. Harry looked up at the most hated Professor. “Meet me at the Great Hall in fifteen minutes. Understand.”

Severus turned and walked out of the Infirmary before Harry could even answer. He left before he even noticed the evil glare that he was getting from Poppy. Severus knew that before he left he was going to have to talk to Minerva, and that alone would not be a conversation that he would readily want to have.

Poppy walked into her office after Severus left and threw some floo powder in the fire.

“Minerva!,” Poppy yelled.

Minerva's head emerged from the fire.

“Poppy,” Minerva said. “What's wrong? Is everything alright?”

“That boy...” Poppy ranted. “That boy.”

Minerva was royally confused now. What on earth could have happened that would make Poppy so angry. “What has happened, Poppy?”

Severus walked into Minerva's office. Poppy noticed the distraction in Minerva and somehow known that Severus walked in her office.

“I'll talk to you later,” Poppy sneered out before her head left the fire.

Minerva watched Poppy just leave without saying another word. She looked at her son and could tell that he knew what was going on.

“Severus,” Minerva said standing up from in front of the fireplace and facing her son. “What's going on?”

“I'm taking Potter back to Surrey.”

Minerva could not believe what she had just heard. No, that could not be possible. Harry should not be anywhere near Surrey. Severus could see the anger rising in Minerva and knew that what was to come next would not be good.

Minerva stood behind her desk looking at her adoptive son, opening and closing her mouth. She just didn't know how to respond to this new information.

“Tell me I didn't hear you right. You're taking Harry back to that awful place.” Minerva's voice continued to rise. “You and Poppy just spent two hours fixing that child. And you're standing here telling me that you are taking him back.”

Severus took a deep breath and looked at his mother. “Albus wants Harry back at his relatives. I must take him back.”

“I don't believe you, Severus! How could you? You were the one that said he was not retuning. Now all of a sudden you are sending him back to those damned Muggles!”

“I don't expect you to understand,” Severus' voice was low and calm even though he was raging underneath.

“Understand. UNDERSTAND! I'll tell you what I understand, son.” Severus could not hide the wince at the total disgust that came from his mother's mouth when she said son. “I understand that my son is letting an old rival keep him from seeing pain that he is causing.” There was no hiding the shock on his face. “I understand that your hatred for James Potter is still in you. So much that you would condemn that child to more abuse. I thought you of all people would understand what he was going through. You, of all people, should be the first one to come to aid of Mr. Potter. But no. You're hatred of his father blinds you to the abuse that is clearly found in that boy.”

Slowly Minerva walked over to Severus while ranting at him.

“What are you going to do?” Severus asked. His voice more calm than he really was. “Slap me again. Send me away.” Minerva was taken aback at the accusation. She had felt so bad for her lapse in judgment the last time. She took a step back as if she was slapped across the face.

“I didn't come here to get your blessings about what I'm doing. I was merely letting you know what was going on. And the only reason I did that was because you're my mother. Now, if you think I'm such a disgrace then it will be the last you see of me. Good day, mother.”

With that, Severus walked out of Minerva's office. She could not believe what had just occurred. In one short afternoon, she just lost her grip on both of her boys. She looked at the empty doorway where her son was just standing. A lone tear streamed down her face. Never would she forgive herself for what just happened. Her son just walked out on her, again. She was so ashamed at how she handled her son last time. She never forgave herself for that. And to this day, Severus still blamed himself for Lily's death. But this was different. This time there was only one to blame. She knew there was only one person to blame for this but she didn't have the power or the backing to state it.

Severus walked to the Great Hall on auto-pilot. He couldn't believe all the things that his mother, no Minerva, said to him. Accused him of. All he was doing was following orders. Orders that he is forced to obey without question. No matter how much he did not like or agree with. He didn't realize he was at the Great Hall until he heard a small voice.

“Sir.”

Severus came out of his thoughts and looked at Potter, still clutching that blasted bear.

“I'm ready.”

“I can see that, Potter.” Severus turned and walked towards the front doors of the castle. Harry followed him. “Let's go, Potter.” Severus opened the door. Harry walked out of the school. Severus turned and looked at the stairs going up to the seventh floor, sighed, and turned and walked out of the school.

TBC


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