Heavenly Angel Chapter 5
Severus was startled out of his reverie by a loud hooting from the window. A softly simmering cauldron was gently covered and he opened the window.
“What do you want, obnoxious bird?” Severus asked.
Caesar hopped in the window and shook the letter at Severus.
“Already?” Severus frowned as he reached for the letter.
The first thing he noticed was her writing was scrawled hurriedly and she had lost complete control of her sealing wax. He frowned and ripped it open as he walked to his desk.
DON’T ADD LEPIDOLITE TO THE STASIS POTION!!!
(He was surprised she didn’t send him a howler.)
It will make the potion too acidic when it bonds to the weasel blood and eventually disintegrate anything containing chlorophyll. Double check it in O’Brien’s Encyclopedia of Minerals.
(Severus frowned. That book was rare, at best. How in blazes did she get a copy?)
Thank you for the necklace. It’s lovely.
(Well, at least she acknowledged it. He chuckled in spite of himself. Infuriating, stubborn, wench.)
Good luck with dad, you’ll need it.
(What in blazes was that supposed to mean?)
Severus drummed his fingers on his desk. How was he supposed to check something in a book that hadn’t been printed in centuries?
He pulled out his stationary set out of his desk and scrawled a note as the wax melted over the tiny burner.
Caesar hooted at him as he tried to tie the letter around his neck.
“Hold still, you,” Severus said, annoyed. The owl continued to squirm. “Listen, I know it’s a lot of work for one day. I also know the Weasley girl feeds you treats whenever you show up.”
The owl seemed to ponder this for a moment while Severus fastened the letter. He hooted loudly at a small jar on the corner of an end table. Severus sighed and retrieved him an owl treat.
“Go, spoiled owl,” Severus said, waiving him out the window.
Caesar soared out of the window and over the orchards. Severus watched him until he was a miniscule dot in the sky.
“Are you back?” Ginny asked, surprised as Caesar scratched at the kitchen window. She opened the window and he flew back to the perch he took during his last visit, practically knocking Pigwidgeon off it. He hooted loudly at the ice box.
“What’s put you in a mood?” Hermione asked the owl, looking up from her book.
He hooted again. Pigwidgeon joined him in a chorus.
“Too many bloody owls in here,” Ron said as he walked into the kitchen.
“Who let you in?” Hermione teased, making a face at him.
Ginny trotted across the kitchen to hug Ron. Hermione rose and kissed him on the cheek. He grinned at her.
“How’s Luna?” Ginny asked.
“Fat,” Ron said. “And beginning to drive me batty.”
“She’s nesting, Ron,” said Hermione. “I have a book I can loan you-
“Forget it,” Ron said. “There’s not enough time in the day. My bedroom has turned odd colors of flannel overnight.”
“It’s easy to clean,” Ginny said, stubbornly defending her sister-in-law. “Babies spit up all over everything.”
“When is the baby due?” Hermione asked, walking to Caesar to retrieve her letter.
“Another month,” said Ron, grinning. “Snape still bothering you?”
Ginny burst into a fit of giggles and ran from the room.
“What’s with her?” Ron asked.
Hermione was torn. Ron was her best friend. Severus was, in his words, courting her. Ron was bound to find out, but it was all still in the early stages. She hadn’t even seen Severus since he sent his letter. She didn’t know what to tell him.
Ron frowned at her.
“Tell me whatever it is,” he demanded.
“What?” Hermione said, trying to look innocent.
“You get that little crease between your eyes when something’s going on,” said Ron. “Tell me or I’ll shake Ginny until she tells me.”
“What?” Hermione asked laughing.
“Well, she must be nearly bursting,” said Ron. “Otherwise she’d still be here.”
“I think you’d better sit down,” said Hermione.
She poured tea for them. She carefully began telling him about the first letter, gauging his responses as she went. She didn’t want him to over-react. He seemed to be fine. Actually, he seemed to be as amused as Ginny, to Hermione’s annoyance.
“So, he sent you a novel-sized love letter?” Ron laughed.
“Illustrated, even,” Ginny piped up as she returned to the kitchen, grinning widely as she slipped the owls treats.
“Oh, come on, Hermione,” pleaded Ron. “I’ve got to see it.”
“No!” Hermione gasped. “Never! Don’t you dare!”
“Wonder where she keeps it?” Ginny mused.
“I’ll jinx it,” warned Hermione.
“Fine then,” said Ron. Ginny poured herself a cup of tea and left the room again.
“What did you tell him?” Ron asked.
“Whatever do you mean?” Hermione asked.
“I mean, you still have that crease between your eyes,” Ron quirked an eyebrow at her. “Nice necklace.”
“Thanks,” said Hermione, turning pink. She tucked the chain under her jumper.
She went on to tell him about her letter and Severus’ reply.
“Then the idiotic git wanted to put lepidolite in the stasis potion,” said Hermione angrily.
“What did you do?” Ron asked, afraid he knew the answer.
“I owled him telling him if he was worth his salt he’d know more about the ingredients he was working with,” Hermione said haughtily.
“Hope you remembered to thank him,” Ron chuckled.
“Of course I did,” Hermione said, annoyed.
“What a letter that must’ve been,” Ron said, his shoulders shaking. “Ginny know about the necklace?”
“Not exactly,” said Hermione awkwardly.
“Well, I’m not going to tell her,” said Ron. Hermione was surprised.
“Really?” Hermione asked.
“This is too good,” Ron said, grinning. “I’m going to keep this one.”
“Gee, thanks,” Hermione said sarcastically.
“How you explaining all the owls?” Ron asked, curiously.
“We’re still working on the stasis potion,” Hermione said.
“Freaks in love,” Ron shook his head. “What’s this letter say?”
“I’m not going to show you,” Hermione said frantically, reaching for her wand.
“Hold on,” Ron said laughing and holding both hands up. “You read it and edit as you see fit.”
“You think this whole thing is funny, don’t you?” Hermione glared as she ripped the envelope open. A blue mist smelling of cake wafted out. A small blue pouch landed on the table.
“Oh, yes,” said Ron. “Nearly as good as when you had a tail.”
“Oops,” Hermione said, reading the letter. She passed it to Ron.
“You sure?” Ron asked.
“I’m sure,” Hermione said. She leaned back and grabbed a tin of biscuits from the counter behind her. She opened it and Ron reached for one.
Perhaps you should read your books more thoroughly. More to the point, the publishing information. The tome you suggested to me has been out of print for a few hundred years. How in blazes did you get a copy? I would very much like to see it.
“Such passionate letters,” said Ron, his eyebrows raised. “I don’t know how you contain yourself.”
“Oh, shut up,” Hermione snapped as she grabbed her letter back. “I don’t even know why I told you.”
“Because you had to tell someone and Ginny wouldn’t ever you alone,” said Ron, grinning and folding his hands behind his head.
“Probably,” said Hermione opening the pouch. She tipped it and a bracelet fell out.
“Woah,” Ron said and reached for it.
“Hang on,” said Hermione, wanting to take a look at it.
It looked like it was made of silver or steel. Small wide links were set with pyramid cut sapphires. She handed it to Ron.
“I think this is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen,” Ron said as he undid the clasp. He jokingly tried to put it on. “Do you think it’s me?”
“Kind of punk-ish, don’t you think?” Hermione grinned as he handed it back to her.
“Tonks is going to be insanely jealous,” Ron said as he helped her put it on. “Don’t forget to enchant it before you bathe.”
“I won’t,” Hermione said. “I wonder what made him choose this one?”
“You did what?” Severus said, trying not to yell at the little elf.
“Tinky knows Master is courting Miss,” said Tinky proudly. “So Tinky picked out a gift a lady of her background and age would like. She put it in Masters last letter.”
Severus prayed it wasn’t a pair of socks.
“What was it?” Severus asked slowly.
Tinky pulled out a piece of grimy paper from her ‘uniform.’ Severus reached out and snatched it from her. He unfolded it and found himself looking at a page torn from a catalog.
It certainly was modern. Probably not something he would have picked out, but she was muggle-born. It might be something popular among them.
“Fine,” said Severus curtly. “But please let me choose them in the future.”
The little elf’s face began to fall.
“It’s more personal that way,” Severus said hastily.
The elf beamed and took the page back. She carefully folded it and tucked it away.
“Tinky will bring Master the whole catalog,” Tinky squeaked happily.
“Thank you,” said Severus weakly. He mused that if it were not for Hermione he would normally never have this much patience with a house elf. “That would be ideal.”