‘Shared dreams,’ Severus thought while he stared at the page in the book with growing horror. This is why Miss Granger had looked so embarrassed when showing him those unknown books. No wonder she hadn’t wanted to wait and sit at his side, while he discovered that bit of information. Merlin’s hairy balls! As if things hadn’t already been difficult enough. The thought alone that Miss Granger, no Hermione , had shared every one of those dreams, had felt every kiss and every embrace they had shared, but not shared at the same time…
Had she been disgusted after she woke up? Afraid? Aroused? Had she maybe even touched herself afterwards? Morgana’s tits, he needed to stop that line of thoughts immediately and get his thoughts out of the gutter. Nothing good could come out of it. He was her fucking Professor and they had just moved on to a less awkward and strained relationship. He could not risk messing that up again. But how was he supposed to speak to her, to teach her now? Knowing that she knew ? It was impossible and still, he had to do it, not only because it was his damned job but because he did not want to make things awkward between them again. And avoiding her now after she had shown him such an amount of trust would send the entirely wrong signal to her.
Severus closed the book on his lap with a groan, burying his face in his hands. Somehow he had to do this, he had to face Miss Granger, watch her and the fucking Weasel hold hands, knowing that it was him she dreamed of, not that red-haired idiot. Would those dreams now slowly stop, that she was about to fall in love with somebody else? Maybe. But what if they did not? Could that be a sign that she was secretly thinking about him, too? Or would it be his fault, because he wished there could be more between them? Would she think it was his fault? God, he hoped not, because he was already feeling bad enough as it was, without Hermione blaming him, too.
To say that the rest of the week was awkward would have been the understatement of the year, Hermione thought.
It all started with another dream the night after she had shown her Professor the Room of Requirements. And strangely enough, it played out in that very room, featuring one of the armchairs she had so far only used for reading. But this time she was not reading at all, but climbing onto Severus lap, straddling him with her thighs, burying her fingers into his soft black her, while she kissed him senseless. His growing erection was grinding against her core, making her want more than she ever seemed possible. Luckily the dream ended before things got even more heated and she woke up, gasping for air and aching in all the wrong places. Once more it was like she could still feel his hands on her, cradling her against his lean body, making her feel so good, so wanted and aching for more. But no, she would not touch herself, she had not done so for a long while, definitely not after she had discovered that they were sharing those dreams. But knowing that he was probably awake now too, probably feeling the same ache and longing like she was made her feel strangely excited and mortified at the same time. Would he relieve himself? And if he did, would she be able to feel it through the bond if she just listened carefully enough? No, she mustn’t think about that now. It was none of her business what Professor Snape did or did not do in his bed, or in the shower or… no! She had to stop this train of thoughts immediately.
Merlin, why did she tell him about those dreams? Was it her damned need to show off her knowledge again? It was possible, even though she had not thought so yesterday evening. But did it even matter now? Professor Snape knew and she would have to face him in the morning for her DADA lesson. She could only hope he would not again ask her to duel with him because that was probably more than she could take right now.
During breakfast, she could not even glance towards the teacher’s table, glad for any form of distraction the boys so freely offered.
“Patrolling wasn’t so bad,” Ron told them while savouring his ham and eggs. “Malfoy was mostly silent, like he was brooding over something, but he didn’t even insult me. Isn’t that strange?”
“Yeah,” Harry agreed, staring at the blonde Slytherin with a contemplative expression. “He seems different this year, don’t you think?”
Hermione shrugged. To be honest he hadn’t given Malfoy a second thought since the new school year started, even though she should have , if Harry’s theory was right. But somehow her heart just wasn’t in it, right now. “Maybe,” she admitted, picking at her food. “He hasn’t insulted us, or talked to us, at all. Maybe he’s just finally starting to grow up.”
Harry, who was sitting across from her at the table, snorted. “Yeah, sure, and Hagrid is going to teach ballet classes from next week on,” he said in an amused tone.
“What’s ballet?” Ron asked and Hermione was thankful for the bit of distraction that explaining the concept of Muggle ballet to him offered.
Only that the awkwardness continued as soon as Hermione entered the DADA classroom. Luckily, Professor Snape did not ask her to duel him today, choosing poor Ron instead for a partner, only to wipe the floor with him. Hermione was paired off with Harry instead and for once in her life, she felt like she was doing better in defence than him. But she guessed during her last lesson, Professor Snape had given her a head-start in non-verbal casting.
“Well, Mr Weasley,” the Professor drawled until Ron had once more gotten back on his feet, a grim expression on his face. “If you really want to make a career as an Auror one day, you’ll have to do better than that .”
Hermione felt like rolling her eyes. If she didn’t know better one could have thought, Professor Snape was picking on Ron on purpose. But that was ridiculous. He had always used the method of intimidation and pointing out one’s mistakes to teach, and with most of them, it worked pretty well. At least Hermione thought that Ron was indeed improving.
“Potter, your turn,” Professor Snape barked, releasing a gruff-looking Ron, who seemed completely fine except for his wounded ego. Harry stalked over to the Professor with a proud, stubborn look in his eyes, while Ron hurried towards her with a relieved look on his face.
“Merlin, now I know why you felt the need to hurt him,” he mumbled, before taking on his duelling position. “The man is an arrogant prick. I would have tried to hex him too, if I thought I’d had a chance. Then we could have been in detention together,” Ron said, casting her a shy smile.
Hermione nodded and smiled back awkwardly. Considering that Severus would probably ask her after those shared dreams today, she almost wished Ron would have done just that.
Severus equally dreaded and anticipated Hermione’s last detention in the evening. It wasn’t that he did not look forward to seeing her, he just did not know what to say when he did. What did one say to the woman, he was sharing highly inappropriate dreams with? Should he even say something? Gods, this was so difficult and totally outside of his comfort zone.
The girl knocked at his door at exactly seven again, indicating that she, too, did not look forward to this meeting. He could only imagine how embarrassed she was, those dreams being probably the last thing she wanted, after having been disappointed so badly by him. Not that he was the man teenage girls fancied and dreamed about, to begin with. Still, she had let him know what was happening to them and even though he somehow wished he had no idea about those shared dreams, he was still forever grateful that she had told him.
“Good evening, Miss Granger,” he greeted her more politely than he usually would and ushered her into his office. His private quarters maybe would not be a good choice of location today and neither would his lab, as both places were frequently featured in their dreams. “Shall we work on the light crystals today? Or is there anything else you’d like to show me… or talk about?”
“Nothing, Sir,” she said, her cheeks pinkening as soon as she raised her eyes to look at him. Good, he did not want to talk about this either, he thought. It wasn’t like any of them could influence those embarrassing dreams anyway, therefore talking about them probably wouldn’t change a thing or only make things worse.
He looked at her with a decidedly neutral expression.“Then I guess we should start right away. Today it will be my turn to test the crystal again. I think one or two more of these sessions and we will be able to start integrating it into the microscope, don’t you think?”
Hermione stared at the crystal on his desk contemplatively. “It is possible, Sir.”
“Severus,” he corrected her, a small smile on his face.
“Severus,” the girl repeated, a shy smile on her lips. But it did not matter. She had used his first name which meant things between them were good, right? Well, maybe they were not perfect , yet, but they could still get there, with time. And luckily Severus Snape was a patient man.
“Mum, dad, tomorrow I am going on a date,” Hermione announced into her two-way mirror, after she had gotten back from her last detention with Professor Snape. She would not call him Severus in her head, as she did not want to risk slipping in front of the other students because that would definitely raise awkward questions.
“Really, Pumpkin? Pumpkin, we’re so happy for you!” her mother announced with an excited squeal and Hermione was glad she had silenced the curtains of her four-poster bed. “Whom did you ask? Is it Ron?”
Hermione smiled. “Yeah, I asked him, like you suggested I should. You were right. He was very happy to join me.”
Her mum beamed at her, while her father looked at her with an encouraging smile. He was never one to talk much, but his eyes said it all.
Her mum, on the other hand, could barely reign in her excitement. “I’m sure you’ll have so much fun. Just... don’t eat any onions beforehand and don’t forget to brush your teeth very carefully .”
Hermione cringed internally, but at the same time, she could not hide her amused smile. “It’s too late for that kind of advice, mum. I... already kissed him.”
At that, her father started to look slightly green, whereas her mum looked, like she wanted to climb through the little mirror to pull her into an excited hug. “That’s my girl,” she cooed with a smug grin. “Sometimes it is us girls who need to take the initiative. It was the same with Dan and me. Isn’t that right, love?”
Her dad suddenly looked, like he wanted to be anywhere but at her mum’s side, chatting about how he got hooked by the firey Emma Jankins. Not, that Hermione did not know the story already. It was one of her mum’s fondest memories.
“Sure it is,” her father mumbled and Hermione could see him petting her mum’s leg. They still seemed happy with each other, Hermione noticed with a happy feeling in her chest.
“Well? How was it?” her mum finally asked her, an excited glimmer in her eyes. “Is he a good kisser?”
Merlin! That wasn’t really wasn’t something she wanted to talk about with her parents, at least not with her dad, who had been suspiciously absent whenever the subject of love and ... sex was mentioned ... in an educational sense of course. Now, too, he seemed growingly uncomfortable and it was only a moment until he got up, an awkward smile on his lips. “I think I have forgotten to turn off the water in the garden,” he said and Hermione did not believe him for a second. Not that she minded him leaving, because there were some topics she rather discussed without him listening in. “I’ll just...” Hermione saw him motion towards the door in the background and a moment later he was off, much to her and her mum’s amusement.
“Well, so much for dating advice from your dad,” her mum said, as soon as the door closed behind her. “He’d probably say something like: stay true to yourself and don’t be too nervous about the whole thing.”
Hermione thought it was a piece of rather sensible advice and not too hard to follow, as she knew Ron for many years already.
“I thought about doing something with my hair...” Hermione admitted, gesturing at the wild mess of hair on her head. “And maybe putting on some lipstick? Or so you think that would be too much?”
“Nah, I’m sure it will be fine. We want your boy to understand that he’s special to you, after all. Don’t we?”
Hermione nodded with a smile. Ron was special to her, in his very own way.
“So, back to that kiss. How was it?” her mum whispered conspiratorially. Not that anyone would have heard her, as her dad was probably as far away as he could get in their house.
“Uhm, well... It was nice, I guess. Ron was very enthusiastic, you know?” she admitted with a blush. “I mean, it was exciting and everything but maybe we just need to practise a bit more.”
Her mum laughed. “I’m sure tomorrow you’ll get the chance to do just that. And don’t worry, there’s no right or wrong way to kiss, there’s no perfect technique or something like that. Just do what you enjoy and you’ll be fine...”
“Alright, thanks mum,” Hermione said with a small smile on her face. Do what feels right , maybe wasn't very concrete advice but it sounded sensible enough. And going by the number of kisses she and Professor Snape traded in their dreams, one should think that she had done a fair amount of practising already , if only in her mind. Only that those kisses felt a hundred times more natural than her fumblings with Ron, but they were only a dream and those could rarely compare to reality.
Hermione sighed. She probably just needed to practise more and get used to the feeling of Ron’s tongue and the wetness of it and things would start getting more enjoyable. And maybe those dreams would then finally stop.