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How to Catch the Elusive Snitch (Using Sugar and Surprises)

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How to Catch the Elusive Snitch (Using Sugar and Surprises)

 

I. The Game Begins

'Malfoy! Malfoy! Malfoy!'

The Falmouth Falcons race through the air, high, high; a black arrowhead spearing the cobalt sky. Like a thunderbolt Malfoy twists his broom into a steep dive; a golden lightning of blond hair slashing through the air (the grey robe a dark cloud around him) only pulling up a second before he hits the ground. The crowd cheers and shouts and at least two or three idiot girls are close to fainting. Nothing has changed. Draco Malfoy is still a minor deity and the fact that he is a successful seeker doesn't make his fame lessen.

The Falcons all dive to hover in level with the top box, lead by their giant captain. Snape smiles. That boy... Marcus Flint always knew what he wanted and now he has got it: He is captain of the team that will most likely win this year's League. Of course he would go far, he has the determination of a stubborn rhino. Snape is satisfied. At least not all his students have turned out abysmal. Snape sends Minerva McGonagall a haughty smirk. She just raises an eyebrow at his pride over his former students. The woman probably thinks him arrogant and he doesn't care. Minerva knows him too well.

So, everything is as it used to be in their world: Snape is still a teacher; Quidditch is back; Draco is as usual spoiled, only now by half the wizarding world and not just by his parents. Yes, everything is as it used to be, apart from the fact that Oliver Wood is not flying any more; he and Angelina Johnson and Katie Bell and Fred Weasley and so many others are gone. Dead. The Dark Lord is gone, their world is once more rising like a phoenix from the ruins of death and war. Still, everything and nothing have changed. It is the same Quidditch League, the same spectators, the same incompetent Minister. The same loneliness.

Suddenly Snape is pulled out of his grumpy musings over the state of the wizarding world; thousands of voices braid together in a collective roar: a wave of sound that seems as if it floods the Quidditch pitch and drown them all, whether or not they are willing to join in the celebration of the World's greatest seeker, if not by talent then, at least, by fame.

Pot-ter! Pot-ter! Pot-ter!

It is as if the the boy is directing the heartbeat of the wizarding world. He is its saviour, its doctor, its hero. People rise from their seats; Potter is given a standing ovation. Beside Snape, Minerva, too, is cheering, behaving very unsuitably for an honourable headmistress. Snape snorts. Intolerable!

'Oh, sit down, woman,' he snarls at her, his backside firmly glued to the seat. 'He has not been granted divinity. Yet.'

'Severus,' McGonagall grins and takes her seat, 'I think you are just afraid to lose our bet. Puddlemere is going to win!'

He doesn't even care to justify her ridiculous notion with an answer. She should know how he suffered for that horrible boy. Now she even wants him to lose his Galleons because of Harry bloody Potter. He looks away and tries to ignore half the wizarding world cheering for The Boy Who Lived. Why can't Potter just leave him alone?

Snape's gaze strays to the top box as he tries to distract himself from the disgusting display of hero-worship. He almost startles. Oh, things most certainly are as they used to be: Scrimgeour's general amnesty, given to further an air of forgiveness in their society, has now allowed Lucius out of Azkaban? Snape stares as Minister Scrimgeour takes his seat, Lucius on one side, Narcissa on the other. With a deep sigh, Snape realises that everything is back to normal. It is as if the war never happened--apart, of course, for the losses and the empty seats at the high table and the half-filled class rooms back at Hogwarts. If he didn't know better, he would believe himself to be caught in a time loop; only this is unfortunately the naked, unpleasant reality, not magic. Snape is still alone, hated, despised. Not much gained from being a hero, really, not for Severus Snape. His life looks exactly the same as before, apart from the lack of evil over-lords and fewer talentless twits to teach; fewer students to bother him with their lack of sensibility and brain cells.

Snape's mouth twists in an unpleasant sneer. Yes, everything is as it once were. Even the former Death Eaters, those who did so much wrong, they are still mingling with ministers instead of being confined in damp cells in Azkaban.

 

II. The Seeker

...and it is Potter! Potter has the Golden Snitch! No! Oh, no! He lost it... was he going for a Plompton Pass? Not too clever! Malfoy! It's Malfoy! Malfoy is coming up behind Potter--he turns right with remarkable speed... it is Potter now! Oooooh! They both lost it--the Snitch is gone! The Chasers are closing in... Are they going to get around Flint...

'Severus?' A soft female voice disturbs him, dragging his attention away from the game. He doesn't turn, he knows that voice, the silken softness of it, the lure. He can feel her sitting down next to him, he can feel the bench move slightly under her slender frame. The scent of her perfume reaches him; roses and fresh linen. She smells of calm summer days and lazy afternoons.

'Narcissa.' There is a long pause before he finally gives up and looks at her. 'What do you want?'

'Thank you, Severus, I am fine. How are you, dear?'

There is a hint of steel in her voice, clashing with her softness. He knows he has to be careful: once before her tears and begging and selfish underhandedness have brought him down. He will not let that happen again. She only comes to him to ask something from him. But now she owes him. This time Severus Snape is not giving away anything.

His voice is hard when he answers. 'What do you want, I asked. I know you, Narcissa. You would not sit here if there wasn't something you'd want me to do for you.'

'That is not true, Severus.' Her voice is low and silken-soft now. 'Would you believe me if I said I just wanted your company?'

'And your husband? Has he forgotten you in his quest to regain what he has lost? He can keep you company. Or maybe your female attributes are not to his liking any more?' Snape sneers at her, deliberately hurtful. 'Maybe his tastes have changed in Azkaban? Is that why you aren't up there?' Snape nods in the general direction of the top box. 'At his side?'

Then her hand slides over his, like a kiss of the summer's breeze. 'I was looking for you. That is why I am not up there.' She smiles at him, but the smile does not reach her eyes. 'It is true that he is not the same--no one is--after Azkaban. But...' Her voice trails off, low and a bit insecure. She looks up at him, her eyes glittering under lush eyelashes. 'I honestly wanted to know how you were. It has been a long time, Severus.'

Not long enough, he knows that. Her voice. Her pliant, sweet way; the fingers, resting like frightened little birds in his hand... He is weak. No, it hasn't been long enough. It will never be long enough or far enough when it comes to Narcissa Malfoy.

'It has, Narcissa. Perhaps you should realise that I am not at all interested in your company. Or in Lucius'.' Severus turns away. He has just about had it with the Malfoys. He has sacrificed what he is willing to sacrifice for them. No more. He shakes his head, as if he is in denial. 'Go away,' he says without turning his head.

'No.' Her voice is suddenly sharp, diamond hard. 'I came here to talk to you, to see if there was something I could do for you. Don't you realise that I know exactly what I owe you? How much.'

He looks up at her. Her eyes are glazed over, following her son riding his broom in a flurry of shining joy and happiness.

'He is alive, thanks to you. We owe you everything, Severus.'

He snorts at her uncharacteristic outburst of honesty and gratitude, rare as a snowstorm in July. 'And Lucius? Does he think he owes me too? I'm certain he will be ecstatic when he finds out what you have told me.' He looks at her, scrutinising as a calculating smirk smears his gaunt face, leaving him with an expression of un-stilled hunger. One eyebrow raises; a mocking line on his brow. 'Everything, Narcissa? You are placing yourself in my hands?'

 

III. The Chaser

It is as if she hesitates for a moment, her eyes still set on Draco as he out-flies the Puddlemere Chasers. Her hand flutters in his, almost nervously. 'What is it you want? If it is in my power...'

'In your power?' he drawls, the words sliding over his tongue languidly, almost as if he tastes them before they are spoken. 'Do you have power over love, Narcissa? To give me a life with a wife and friends and children? Without the memories of what I had to do? Do you have the power to give me back those who died for our cause? Power to make someone want me? Or are you just here because no one wants you any more?' Snape's hand closes around hers in an iron grip, twisting her pale fingers painfully. 'Tell me, Narcissa. Are you here because this is not about what you can give, but about what you want? You are here because you need to take something from me? Again.' Snape's voice is colder than an Arctic winter's day. 'Well, I'm overwhelmed by your gratitude.' His anger is black and acrid, a sooty wall separating them, built by sacrifices and deep need.

She looks at him, unable to hide her surprise. Wisely she doesn't speak; she only lets him say what needs to be said. But her eyes are filled with a deep sadness, as if her intentions have been misunderstood.

'What is it? You didn't think I had urges, too? Or feelings? That I was less than a man?'

How horribly wrong she is. She doesn't know about lonely nights, about longings and celibacy and dreams suppressed. 'I ask you again, Narcissa,' he sneers. 'Are you here because he is not giving you what you want?' He is crushing her fingers, inadvertently, and she whimpers under the hard grip.

It breaks him to see her face. He believes that he can read the truth in it: this has nothing to do with gratitude or life-debts or vows. This is her, wanting, taking, using. No, why would anyone want Severus Snape; it is as it has always been: they want his talents, his power, his connections. Her need has paralysed his heart: it is cold as stone, a frozen lump of ice, chilled in his burning body, kept in an Ice Age of physical denial.

She closes her eyes for a moment, closes the portal to her tormented mind. It costs her to ask Severus for this, it costs her that Lucius is not giving her what she needs and for a moment Snape wonders what Lucius wants, if it isn't Narcissa. He releases the hold on her hand, not realising he has hurt her.

'No... I... You are my friend, Severus. I feel for you.'

'How remarkably gracious of you.' Snape watches her for a second, pensive. 'Hasn't he touched you since he came back? Lucius?' he whispers in her ear, leaning in so that no one can hear. Her warmth touches his skin; a softness of heat and perfume. 'Tell me, Narcissa. What has he done to you?'

Her breath is an insecure little sound escaping her throat. She doesn't answer right away. Then, without looking at him, she replies, lets the words tumble out; small puppies at play, falling over her lips. Maybe she knows she won't get anywhere if she isn't honest with him. 'He... he has taken me. But he is not... there.' Now she turns and looks at him; the pain in her eyes tells how much she loves her husband, tells how much she needs what she can't have. 'It felt as if he was a stranger.'

'And did he satisfy you? Did he get hard? Or did he leave you wanting?'

'Severus...' The plea is implicit. She won't talk about it. Only if she wants what Severus can give her she has to. This time he will not enter into an agreement to aid a Malfoy without knowing exactly what he will get out of it. Also, he finds it amusing to torture her, see her haughty façade crumble as words which she might never have said otherwise are dragged out of her. Snape's fingers play with hers, inadvertently speaking of a tenderness he is not truly aware of.

'Either you tell me, or you find someone else to help you, Narcissa.' Snape's voice is a velvet purr, but the steel behind the softness is clear. He will not be manipulated this time. He wants to know exactly what it is she wants: no matter if it is a moment's release, an occasional bed-fellow, or a lover. He is not in doubt that it is something like that, only to which extent and why... that he must know. He doesn't want her to leave, however. She is beautiful. He cannot deny that he has lusted after her, that she has been on his mind occasionally when he tossed off in a lonely bed... But he is not for sale. Quid pro quo, this time. Also there is the fact that she is Lucius' wife, and after all Lucius was his friend once. Bloody loyalty! Snape huffs. Loyalty is for Gryffindors.

'He... he was. Only he didn't...'

'He didn't come? And he left you unsatisfied?'

She nods, and somehow he manages to arrange his robe so he can put his hand on her thigh without anyone noticing. 'Explain to me what you did, after.' The demand is cold and neutral, as if he was speaking to a student. It works, because she looks up at him, her expression resembling that of a nervous third-year potions student.

'I had to... satisfy... I have needs...'

'Not good enough, Narcissa.' He wants her admission, her humiliation. 'Explain to me... did you fuck yourself, thrusting fingers into your cunt? Or did you rub against a pillow, moaning his name?' Snape's smile is unpleasant. He knows he hurts her now, but he doesn't care. The filthy words spill over his lips easily; just as courteous he can be, just as eloquent he is when the words are dirty. She must know who has the power in this, that he has no inhibitions to wield the dominance she grants him by her admission. She has to recognise it, or he will not have her.

She smiles when she answers him--Merlin, what a woman! Her eyes are proud and her words are strong, even if spoken softly. She, too, can play this game.

'No, Severus. I thought of you... how strong you are, how powerful when you stood up to Bella and our Lord... how ruthless...' She let her little pink tongue flicker over her lower lip, and Snape can't think of anything but how it would feel to let her lick over the tip of his cock. 'And I wondered if you got hard... when you were playing with power... and I tried to push four fingers inside myself to resemble your cock... I wonder how thick it is... how long...' She smiles as she sees how her words smother him, his sudden restlessness. 'You are going to show me, are you not? What I want. Your cock.'

Oh, how quickly the tables turn. Only Snape does not give in to her tricks. He knows he has to keep her insecure to extract the truth from her lies, slowly parting the one from the other--just as he will later part her legs, her lips. Slowly he lets his thumb slide up her inner thigh, hidden by a long, wide sleeve. 'And you can have it,' he breathes in her ear, letting the words caress the shell, the earlobe. 'I want to fuck you, have my cock buried inside you, feel how wet and needy you are. I want you to moan and clench around my cock when I fuck you hard and deep. I want your nails on my back. I want your whispering sweet words in my ear just before you come, screaming and begging for more. I want you to be mine.' His fingers reach the end of her thigh, brushing over a spot of damp desire. Severus' voice loses its intensity and turns sad, as if it is reflecting the poignant need he harbours. 'Is that what you want, Cissy? Cock?' Her thigh quivers under his hand and her breath shortens. 'Or more?' There is a hopeful tone in his voice, one he is not aware of. 'Is there more you want?'

But she hears it, recognises her own need in it. She sees it in his eyes, even if he believes it hidden behind heavy shields and impenetrable walls. 'Everything,' she whispers, closing her thighs around his hand. 'All I can have.'

He removes his hand as if her warmth has burned him. 'And what do I get, Narcissa Malfoy, in return?' he hisses at her. 'You are his, are you not? Will you not abandon me the moment he turns his eyes to you? Is it not him you want more than anyone else?' Snape's voice trembles, the sudden anger and jealousy badly hidden. 'He is all you can ever want: beautiful, powerful, rich. Why, Narcissa? Give me one reason why I would want to agree to those terms.'

It seems as if she sees right through him, sees something not even he knows he harboured: a need for her, but also, unrecognised, a desire for the man who belongs to her. 'When did you last have a woman, Severus?' she asks as she stands. 'Or a man?'

 

IV. The Score

She leaves him partly enraged, partly flabbergasted. How dares she, the impertinent wench? Such an arrogant tart, to approach him like that, with all her teary-eyed longing and her talk of debts. Trying to fool him, again! Suddenly his temper takes over and his eyes slide over the crowd; a hawk seeking its prey. She is not going to get away with it, treating him like that! Then he finds her, slithering elegantly amongst people in her thin robe, a rare, expensive, beautiful creature in a sea of commoners. Quickly he gets up, murmuring an inane excuse to Minerva and goes after Narcissa.

He sees her disappear up the stairs to the top box, the train of her robe slipping around the corner, so similar to a snake's curling tail. He is right behind her and the staircase is empty and then, even before he had realised how and why, oh, Merlin, he drags her under the stairs. She is pressed up against the wall, her soft body a furnace against his coldness, there is no way he can remember how they ended up like that because all he feels is her eyes and her mouth and her body singing to him. 'Siren,' he hisses at her, it is both a caress and a curse; her eyes seem neither afraid nor tender, but a bit of both.

'Severus...' Her voice is soft in his ears, gentle, but demanding. 'I want you. Now.'

Then there is no holding back. He doesn't care that there are people around them, above them, on the stairs leading up. He can't even collect himself enough to reach for his wand, for his hands are firmly placed on Narcissa's arse. She is both velvet and iron in his hands; her beautiful eyes luring him into a state of enchantment. Not even the Dark Lord has ever held such a power over him as Narcissa does this moment. With his lips attached to hers, their tongues duelling, licking, fighting for dominance, he lifts her up, pushes her against the wall so harshly that her robe rips, and she lets out a surprised little sound, one he swallows like a titbit, a creamy toffee against his tongue.

This moment his relative inexperience doesn't bother him. He is a man--very much so, judging from how hard he is for her--and she is the woman he wants. There isn't much to think about, nothing to be afraid of when he feels her arms slide around his neck; nothing to be afraid of when he pushes hers and his own robes away. Her warm thighs lie like a ring of strength and warmth against his waist. He can feel her: she is wet and open, swollen against his stomach and somehow his cock finds its own way inside, guided by their bodies' movements and her little burning sighs against his neck.

Gods, it feels good! He is close to coming, even before she moves; just the feeling of her tight muscles and the hot cunt encasing him is enough, more than enough. He stands still, doesn't dare to move, doesn't dare not to give her what she asks for. Not yet. He wants her so badly, his woman; a sweet waste of time to brighten his life. If he can have her, that is, against all sensibility and convention.

Calmly he starts moving inside her, and for a while he lets go of her mouth to look into her eyes. She is a hard and ambitious woman, but he sees nothing of that now, just heavy-lidded, pleasure-filled eyes, all her emotions directed at him--gods, yes, how he wants her!

They move together in the grey darkness underneath the stairs, a small hidden alcove to cover their movements and their sighs. Gradually he increases his thrusts: they become harder and deeper, as if he craves her body; persuades her to surrender to him. In the grey darkness she lets her pleasure take her away; her head is leaned against the wall, her long hair falls around her face, wild and sweaty. Her sighs become whimpers, then moans, and finally, just before Severus is certain he can't hold back any longer, she cries out and spasms around him, her nails trailing painful little paths on his back.

'Oh, Severus,' she sighs in his ear. Then she stiffens and gasps loudly enough to make him stand frozen too.

 

V. The Bludger

'Quite an interesting sight.' The haughty drawl doesn't truly penetrate the haze Severus is in right away. 'I do appreciate your attempt to relieve my wife, Severus, but I assure you, I am capable of doing the honours myself.' Lucius Malfoy is leaning against the banister, his eyes set on them, cold and hard.

For a second the world stops, their frantic kisses and thrusts freeze. Everything is silence. The blood pounds in Severus' veins, in his ears; shame and embarrassment threaten to overtake the gorgeous state of arousal they have just been in.

'Now, if you would kindly remove yourself from my wife's cunt,' Lucius says as he flicks his wand and cast the silencing charm they have both forgotten in the tangle of need and haste and emotions, 'and come over here to help me undress a bit...' Lucius steps up to them, very much resembling a large, beautiful, dangerous predator. Severus is at a bit of a loss about what to do; it is not quite the response he would have expected from a man whose wife has just been discovered with another man's cock buried deep in her. Narcissa's arms have tightened around his neck, as if she was a statue or a doll. 'Do as he says,' she finally whispers to him, initiative and life pouring back into her once more. 'Let go, Severus.'

They let go of each other and Severus slips out, still half-hard. He is grateful that his robe hides everything, everything apart from a dark wet spot spreading over the front of it, leaving traces of excitement, telling clear tales of his hardness and her arousal.

'Nice,' Lucius purrs sarcastically. 'Now, come over here, Severus, and unbutton my robe.'

Severus is certain he has gone insane, or possibly has ended up in an alternative reality. He looks at Narcissa and Lucius as if they were two particularly interesting and odd specimens. Even if he wants to shout at them and leave, wanting to get away from this humiliating display, something deep inside him stops him from delivering a scorching retort and then billow angrily out from under the staircase, out of their lives. He can't. He can't leave Narcissa alone. Somehow the hungry look in Lucius' eyes has made him curious in a way he didn't think possible. He does want to get out but, by Merlin, he wants to stay, too--to find out what in Heaven's name Lucius wants.

'Now, Severus,' Lucius demands, as he drags Narcissa closer. Severus approaches carefully, insecurely. 'Tell me, wife,' Lucius says, as he tilts her face to kiss her, ignoring Severus' nervous attempt to open the flimsy robe. 'Is this something you plan to do often? Because you see, I seem to remember you promised to share everything with me when we married.'

 

VI. The Victory

Lucius must have seen acceptance in her eyes, because suddenly Severus finds himself firmly embraced and thoroughly kissed. He doesn't manage to react before Lucius' hand is behind his head, pulling him into one of the most demanding and wonderful kisses Severus had ever had, with the possible exceptions of the kisses he just shared with Narcissa. He melts into his friends' embrace and he just lets go. Severus takes what he can get now. And Lucius is both handsome and a good kisser, so there is actually no real excuse not to let him do what he wants. Narcissa's hand finds Severus'. Her breath is heavy, as if she likes very much what she sees. Finishing the deep kisses with a few small almost tender ones, Lucius reluctantly lets go of Severus. There is no anger to see in his eyes, just lust.

'What in Merlin's name do you think you-' Severus protest is almost automatic, and Lucius has clearly expected it. He simply kisses Severus again, and when he lets go, Severus is not at all in a state where he can allow himself to complain. Lucius' hand moves over his body, slowly rubbing over Severus' hardening cock.

'Quiet, Severus. Now let us just enjoy what we have here...' Lucius pulls Narcissa in between them and with a confident grip, he bends her over, her hair wrapped around his fist. 'Pull up your robe,' Lucius orders Severus as he pushes Narcissa's face closer to Severus' groin. She looks up at Severus, the desire for him is back, her shining eyes and wet, swollen lips have never looked more inviting.

'Open up for him, Narcissa. Suck him!' Lucius' voice is low, and the tone makes it clear that nothing is up to discussion. 'Suck him, I want to watch him come in your mouth.'

Narcissa moans and her pink tongue sweeps over the head of Severus' cock. He closes his eyes at the wonderful sensation. When he opens them again, he locks eyes with Lucius, as if to seek his permission.

'Fuck her mouth, Severus. She loves it!'

Now Severus doesn't hesitate. His hand meets Lucius' in a tangle of hair and fingers, and he thrusts in, almost too deep for her to take. She moans and tries to pull back a little, before her lips close around him.

Then he sinks into a heaven of suction and slides of tongue and hands and lips. It feels so good, he doesn't hold back, he sets a quick pace. She follows him, licking and sucking. Severus' moans are deep, they have been hidden for too long; he feels strangely liberated just by letting them go.

Lucius unceremoniously pushes Narcissa's robe up, and slides into her, one long slide, she is ready still, opened by Severus' deep thrusts inside her. She is still dripping wet with Severus' come. 'My little slut,' Lucius breathes over her as he leans forward to pull her close, down over his cock. 'I love you,' he tells her, and slams into her, hard. 'And you love this, don't you?' he asks, not expecting an answer. He just fucks her, moaning her name, then Severus'. Lucius lets go of Narcissa's hair, leaving the mass of blond curls in Severus' hands. Lucius pinches and touches and gropes; Narcissa's breasts; Severus' nipples; his arse, at least as far as Lucius can reach, bent over Narcissa as he is. Lucius' eyes are set on Severus, following him, enjoying what he sees, even though Severus has no idea why, he is not exactly handsome. But it doesn't matter, because hearing his own name spilling over Lucius' lips is more beautiful than music.

Between them Narcissa moans, quivering, little shudders run through her and she comes, her back arching against them in an elegant, deeply attractive curve, inviting them both to scratch and caress it. Then her orgasm sets Lucius off: he throws his gorgeous hair back, a cloud of light and lust, before he groans and thrusts deep inside his wife, coming hard. He looks utterly beautiful and debauched, like an ancient and powerful pleasure-god. Narcissa follows him, moving with him to the inaudible music of desire; utterly lost in the sensory feast they let her body have.

The sound of Lucius' name vibrates around Severus' cock and it sets him off, too, his bollocks and his brain explode and he pushes in deeply, emptying himself into Narcissa's beautiful mouth. As he rides the waves of his orgasm, Lucius leans over Narcissa and drags Severus into another of those scorching kisses, as if he wants to devour Severus' last moans.

Slowly their moans subside and become ragged breathing, then little sighs. Slowly they let go of each other, helping Narcissa to stand. She smooths her robe before she drags them both closer, draping both her husband and Severus around her as if they were expensive and rare robes. 'Share, you said?' she asks her husband. 'Both yours and mine?'

Over her shoulder Severus can see Lucius smile. He nods, once. 'Yes. Share.'

Severus is not sure if he should leave now, they have no need for him. Whatever Narcissa thought about her husband and his desires is clearly not a problem any more. It is of course the usual agenda: First use Severus Snape, then throw him away. Same procedure as always. The Dark Lord, Albus, Narcissa... Then something dawns, a light chasing his budding anger away. 'Share? Share what?'

Narcissa turns in Lucius' embrace and slides an arm around Severus' waist. 'Severus,' she purrs, kitten-like. 'If you have nothing to do next week... ' She hesitates, waiting for his reaction. All she gets is a raised eyebrow and a pair of black, scowling eyes. 'If you have time, I think we would like you to come visit us. The summer can be very long and boring in the countryside, you know. You can stay as long as you like.'

For a moment he doesn't understand the words. The meaning of them eludes him. From outside they can hear a roar from the audience, then the speaker's voice, exhilarated: Aaaaand Malfoy has caught the Golden Snitch! The Falcons win! The Falmouth Falcons are the new champions!

Yes, Severus thinks, as he considers their suggestion, Malfoy wins. As always. He nods his acceptance. He might never get wife and children and a normal life, but when he looks at Lucius and Narcissa--rich, powerful, beautiful--he understands that this is no consolation prize.

The world is back to normal. Almost. When Narcissa once more slides into Severus' embrace and Lucius' soft lips mark his neck with kisses he realises that this time, Severus Snape has won too.