Fest Fic: In Which Hermione Becomes a Fairy Godmother Title: In Which Hermione Becomes a Fairy Godmother Author:brixxx Prompt: #58 The Sleeping Beauty Syndrome: Harry feeling lonely and tired of all the people worshiping him just because he is The-Boy-Who-Lived, decides to take the fairy story for real and get himself into a magical sleep for a 100 years hoping that his soul-mate finds him during that time period. Pairing: Harry/Snape Rating: Pg Word Count: 4,611 Warnings (if any): fluff Author's Notes (if any): Written for Phoenix_Flies on Insanejournal for cblue9, and beta-ed by captainlogic and funmonkey (thanks guys!). I've kind of tried to keep it traditional…ish, so hope you like it! Harry Potter and the subsequent rights attached to the books/films are the property of J K Rowling, Scholastic, and WB etc; I only created the plot in this story.
Hermione grumbled as she made her way down into the dungeons. She fervently wished she had Harry's old map as the dungeons had always been indecipherable to her. For some reason she was sure that the portraits never stayed in the same position, so much so that Hermione had always suspected that Peeves moved them deliberately to trap unwitting victims.
Reaching another crossroads, reasonably sure she had seen the picture of the glade on her right before, she sighed. Looking left and right, she was about to pick the left road, remembering the old message about finding ones way in a maze, when footsteps started to echo around her. Squinting slightly, ignoring the childish prickle of fear down her spine, she could finally make out the familiar stride of Professor Snape.
"Granger," he greeted coolly as he approached her.
"Snape," she responded, equally coolly. Of all people, it had to be to Potions Master to find her. He was insufferable at the best of times, and now she had to ask for his help.
"I am surprised to see you so far into the dungeons. I can only assume that you are going to inspect Mr Potter's rooms, and yet you seem to be going in the wrong direction."
The vague sense of smugness annoyed Hermione's already rattled nerves. "I seem to have gotten turned around," she admitted.
A hint of smirk passed over his lips.
"The portraits can be rather misleading," he allowed, airily.
Resisting the urge to shout that she was right about the pictures in the dungeons, she crossed her arms. "Would you mind pointing me in the right direction then please?" she asked acidly. She didn't have all day to waste. She needed to see the scene of Harry's collapse if she were to find some sort of answer to his mysterious malady.
"No need. I am on my way there as it happens," he said, something flittering over his face for a brief moment before it was gone.
Simply nodding she started to follow Snape; back the way she had come coincidentally, which she found most galling.
They were silent as they walked; she had no desire to make small talk with the reticent man. Besides, he seemed to be contemplating something. No doubt the same as she was. Harry's sudden illness.
She had received the call this morning from Poppy in her office at St Mungo's where she was a consultant on hexes. Harry had not shown up for his classes this morning, and had been found in his rooms, apparently asleep. Nobody seemed able to wake him, and so they had called her.
After several twists and turns, they finally found themselves at a portrait of an owl. Wasting no time Snape said, "Hedwig," and the door swung open, the owl hooting softly almost in greeting.
Slightly taken aback at Snape's ease into which he entered her friend's rooms, she followed him. Hermione looked around. It seemed exactly the same as when she had been here last; the sitting rooms littered in keepsakes, but tidy enough. She had often thought it was years of having very little growing up, that made Harry particularly prone to hoarding now. In fact she noticed several different items that were new to his collection, and an extra photograph littering his mantle piece.
She looked for signs of tampering as Snape made his way into the room, but only found a little disturbance by the fireplace.
Moving towards it, she pulled out her wand.
"That was where he was laying," Snape said quietly. Hermione glanced up seeing the pensive look on his face. She realised something.
"You were the one that found him weren't you?"
Dark eyes glanced up to hers. Slowly he nodded, eyes looking back to the spot where he had found her friend. He seemed troubled.
Turning away, feeling almost voyeuristic at the sudden emotion on the usually taciturn Potions Master, she continued to look around the area. Unopened letters lay on his sofa and a mass of scrolls lay on the small table. She moved forwards and carefully leafed through the papers. Some were old and brittle, covered in tight lettering that had faded over the years. Squinting at the small print, she managed to decipher the name Charles Perrault before she shifted on one foot and kicked something that went skidding on the floor underneath the sofa with a clatter.
The sudden noise was loud in the quite room, and Hermione put down the papers to sink to her hands and knees, peering under the dark sofa. She reached out her hand and stretched, her fingers brushing against something smooth. Finally she grasped the end of it and pulled the object out. Sitting back on her knees, now being watched by a confused Potions Master, she looked at the object curiously. She wasn't entirely sure, but she thought it was a…
"A spindle?" Snape asked incredulously.
Hearing it out loud set alarm bells off in the back of head. This sounded very familiar. Gingerly she studied the small item with the pointed tip.
"How in the world did he manage to get hold of a spindle?" Snape asked, shocked. Hermione glanced up.
"Well I can't imagine they are common anymore, but relatively easily I'd imagine," she said snarkily.
Snape frowned at her mocking. "Far be it of me to correct you Miss Granger, but spindles and spinning wheels for that matter have been banned in this country for many hundreds of years."
Her eyebrows drew together almost comically. "Are you having me on?"
"I most assuredly am not."
"Why?" she asked curiously.
"I am not a history teacher, Miss Granger." Before he could say more, Harry's fireplace roared into green fire, Minerva McGonagall's head popping out almost immediately. "Severus, Hermione, you must come to the Hospital Wing. I think there is something here you need to see," she said slightly out of breath.
"What is it Minerva?" Snape asked.
Her attention was caught by something behind her and with a frustrated huff she called, "Incendio!" She looked back to them, "We could do with some help here," she said crossly. With that her head disappeared and the fire went quiet, the green flames evaporating immediately.
Snape turned to glance at Hermione, "What are you waiting for? Salazar knows how you and your little group managed to win the war. You're not exactly bastions of immediacy," he snaked as he turned on his heel.
Shrugging, she placed the spindle down gingerly onto the table. She collected the papers together and took them with her as she hurried from the room. Maybe they would shed some light onto Harry's illness.
The spindle rolled slightly on the uneven surface behind her.
Hermione had her wand in her hand as she and Snape ran towards the yelling. She wasn't sure what she had been expecting when she had turned the corner, but seeing several of the teachers being attacked by a giant tendrilled plant was not it. Snape threw an incendio at the plant which covered the door to the infirmary and was growing very quickly down the corridor, and a vine released Professor McGonagall in a dishevelled heap on the floor. Indignantly she shouted a spell, before ducking as another vine grew past her head, stealing the pointed hat on its way.
Taking the professor's arm, Hermione shouted her own few curses as she restrained the woman from going after the black hat.
"What in Salazar's name is happening here Minerva?" Snape bellowed as he gestured with lightening fast wand movements, fighting the plant back.
"I have no idea," she said, "it started growing about an hour ago, and we destroyed it, but it keeps coming back!"
"What about Harry?" Hermione asked desperately, already feeling the strain of the physical exertion as she ducked and dived out of the way of the oncoming vines.
"I don't know," came the strangled response of the Headmistress.
"What?" Snape snarled. His dark eyes glared at the woman and he drew himself up to his full height. He started to throw spell after spell, determined to repel the vines. His sallow cheeks turned pink, but after about half an hour, the plant started to recede under their combined firepower.
Finally they had managed to push the plant back so that they could get to the infirmary door. Hermione was ready to bolt as Snape laid his hand on the door, but as soon as he had, the vines suddenly curled back upon themselves creating an arch and settling, suddenly and eerily still against the brickwork around the door. A soft plop, as Minerva's hat fell to the floor, was the only thing to break the unusual silence. Suspiciously, Snape continued to open the door, but nothing stirred. They entered the room cautiously. Madame Pomfrey, who had been beside herself trapped outside of the room without her patient, hurried to Harry's side, but he was exactly as they had left him.
Hermione leaned closer to the plant to take a look at the green, spiky stems.
"It looks like a common garden briar; you would never think that it would cause so much trouble," McGonagall commented behind her. Hermione spun on her heel and looked curiously at the woman. Her fine grey hair had escaped from her bun, and her face was flushed as she dusted off her battered hat.
"A briar?" Hermione asked, wondering if she was hearing things.
"You would need to see Professor Sprout for a definite categorisation, but it seems to belong to that family."
"A briar, a spindle and Harry is asleep, probably for a hundred years," Hermione mused to herself. "But it can't be; it's only a fairy tale!" she muttered to herself.
"A spindle?" McGonagall asked sharply, "you shouldn’t have a spindle; they're strictly prohibited by the Ministry."
Hermione leaned against the doorway after casting a cautious look at the silent plant, and fixed her old Professor with a resigned stare, sighing. "Why exactly are they banned?"
"Have you ever seen a spindle in the Wizarding World?" she asked her.
"Well, no, but I have never seen a spindle in the Muggle World either. It doesn't necessarily means they were banned in case someone pricked their finger and died," Hermione said sarcastically.
"Well of course it does!" was the amused response, "it was the 1697 Treatise on Spindles, Distaffs and Assorted Textile Machinery by the Wizengamot. After the near death of a high ranking official, it was deemed that Spindles should be classed as a Dangerous Textile Implement," her face grew contemplatitive. "I suppose that in hindsight this may have been an unwise decision."
Hermione nodded, still unsure if what she was being told was the truth.
"After all, it did lead the implosion of the textile industry."
Hermione's eyes closed and she sighed.
Hermione rubbed her eyes tiredly. She was standing before Snape's private quarters and wanted to compose herself before she saw the stern man. She had been sitting with Harry for the last few hours, reading through the papers that she had collected from Harry's room. What she had learned did not bode well; Harry had been onto something that she herself had never even contemplated. She had left his side after McGonagall had persuaded her to get some rest, offering to sit beside Harry in Hermione's place.
Before she could go to sleep however, she wanted to speak to Snape and see if he had found anything. She knocked sharply on the door. Seconds later and the door was hurled open enough to see Severus Snape looking rather haggard and worn. He had slipped off his own robes and the top few buttons of his shirt were open. Grey circles were visible under his eyes. Hermione blinked at the unexpected sight.
He sighed and pushed the door open a little further. "I suppose telling you to go away would not work, so you may as well enter," he said somewhat resignedly.
He turned away and strode back across the room to his sofa. He adjusted the papers somewhat and put a lid on the ink pot that sat on the coffee table.
Hermione hadn't been sure what she had been expecting when she had come. Maybe somewhere in the back of her mind she clung to the childish image of bats and darkness when she thought of Snape, but she should have expected the spacious and immaculately clean quarters, books lining the walls and a large cabinet that probably held more books. The scent of sandalwood hung in the air.
"Were you never taught manners, Miss Ganger? Sit." He gestured at the sofa opposite him. She settled herself and caught sight of a pile of Quidditch Monthly magazines which were painfully out of place in the rooms.
"You enjoy Quidditch?" she asked, regretting it instantly. She was too tired to mind her tongue.
He frowned. "No," he said, his eyes lighting on the magazines she had spotted. His gaze darkened, and his mouth tightened. "It is late, Miss Granger," he said pointedly.
"I was wondering what you had learned about Harry's condition?" she asked.
"Ah." Hermione gritted her teeth. He leaned back in the sofa. "My results haven't been conclusive," he started, gesturing half heartedly at the papers next to him. "It seems that Harry has managed to get himself a rather dangerous and highly illegal sleeping potion."
Hermione frowned and pushed a strand of curly hair behind her ear as she settled backwards into the sofa, her discomfort forgotten for a moment. "How?" she asked. "We both know his potions skills aren't exactly fantastic, and it would be front page news of the Prophet if he even tried to get hold of something like that."
Snape shrugged. "And yet he managed it."
She chewed her lip for a second, hoping against hope that it was not what she thought it was. "How long does it last for?"
"There are only traces left in his system, and even a small dose could kill; a sip would be enough to kill Hagrid." He put his papers to one side, and rubbed the bridge of his nose with a grimace of pain.
"I can only estimate a couple of drop would render him unconscious …indefinitely."
Hermione's heart plummeted. Angrily she pressed shaking fingers to her eyes to stop the sting of tears.
"Miss Granger," Snape's voice asked, sounding odd ad stilted. She opened her eyes and after a moments hesitation she reached out for the white tissue he was holding out to her. She concentrated on the strangely kind behaviour and was able to stem the tears and compose herself.
"Is there an antidote?" she asked blinking furiously.
His steady gaze met hers. "I am unsure. This potion is an old one. Its properties liken it to one that was banned in 1697 and have yet to find much reference to it," he admitted.
She nodded decisively, her mind already anxious to be in the library. Snape however seemed to know. "You are tired, and Harry…Mr Potter, would wish for you to get some rest. His condition will not change."
He raised a hand to silence her protests. She noticed that his fingers were black with ink stains, a carelessness for a material she had never thought of the Potions Master.
"Sleep, Hermione," he spoke as if her name was foreign on his tongue, and she supposed it was. "I shall sit with him for a while," he promised. She plucked the arm of the sofa as she studied him. For some reason she gave in. As she headed towards her own room, something tickled the back of her mind, but she was too tired to concentrate. She was too tired to even notice the small, flying blue light swoop past her door heading towards the infirmary.
She turned the corner to the Hospital wing but paused as she heard someone talking quietly.
"You are still incredibly inconsiderate, Potter," came the acidic voice. "Merlin knows how you have managed to dose yourself with a sleeping potion this advanced. You are lucky it didn't kill you."
"I thought it had for a moment," came the almost inaudible response. "Potter...Harry..." a sharp intake of breathe, then, "who's there?"
Hermione stepped around the corner, blushing hotly at Snape's angry stare.
"Eavesdropping, Granger? I would have thought that beneath you. But I forget, you were all very fond of extendable ears as children weren't you?"
She swallowed. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to..." she straightened her shoulders. She had every right to be here. She looked past Snape's shoulder to look at Harry, noticing clearly that Snape's body had moved directly in front of her friend. "I couldn't sleep."
He nodded barely and left Harry's side. "I shall leave you to it," he said quickly as he pulled his robes closer around himself.
She settled herself next to Harry and pulled out her notes and started to read. It couldn't have been more than a few hours before she had what she thought she needed. Lifting up her friend's hand, she checked his fingers. As she had expected, a small red dot was on his middle finger. She knew without a doubt that he had suffered the most grievous of wounds. He had pricked his finger on a spindle. The truth was more terrifying that she had ever thought to believe and the cure involved … a Prince.
Rubbing her eyes, she abandoned the sheets of parchment and stood, exiting the small private room that Harry had been put in.
"Poppy?" Hermione called as she wandered out of the room. The Mediwitch couldn't have gone far. With a quick glance back at Harry's sleeping form, she left in search of the other woman.
"Poppy?" she tried again. The room seemed eerily quiet for a moment and Hermione felt chills shiver down her spine. Slowly she pulled her wand from its holster at her waist and crept into the main wing.
Her gaze immediately settled on the figure behind the curtain at the far end of the room that surrounded a bed. "Poppy?" Nerves cramped her stomach. Poppy Pomfrey had ears like a bat, and her years as a Mediwitch had given her a keen sense as to when someone needed her. Hermione walked slowly forwards, coming closer to the drawn curtain and the woman's seated silhouette.
Wand outstretched and her heart pounding she reached her free hand out and pulled the curtain back. Poppy lay spread eagled on the soft chair, her wand hanging loosely from one lax hand, her chin resting on her prodigious chest, eyes closed. A gentle snore could be heard and Hermione's eyebrows creased in confusion.
Before she could move closer to the woman a small blue glow screeched angrily at Hermione's face. War-sharpened reflexes helped her as she darted back, narrowly missing a shot of magic that had been aimed directly at her head.
An angry squawking had her rushing back out of the curtained area quickly. As she moved away, the blue light followed her, and only instinct had Hermione protecting herself by yelling a shield spell just as another blast of magic was thrown in her direction.
The initial shock had worn off and now she was annoyed. Crouching behind a bed she looked around trying to spot the tiny menace. She spotted the little blue light tittering angrily somewhere in the far corner. "Stupefy!" she yelled in its general direction. The shriek of rage made it clear she had missed. Ducking in time she leaned against the side if the bed and watched the shots of magic from the pest hit the bed opposite her exploding in a shower of…sand?
Before she could think any more about it. The door to the hospital wing opened, and the creature cackled in glee.
"Hermione? Are you in here?" Minerva called as her head popped into the room. She had gone a few steps when Hermione shrieked, "Get out, Professor!"
She stopped, frowning. "Look Hermione, I know you are under a great deal of pressure, but I think that…" A spell hit her and she fell to the floor in a heap, snoring.
Hermione sighed. The creature's laughter grew louder as she rubbed her forehead tiredly. "Right! That's it you little pest!" she yelled. Standing up, she let loose several stupefy's at once; a trick she had learned when facing several Death Eaters. Finally a squeak, a small thud and silence. Cautiously, in case of a trick, she moved out from behind the bed and walked towards the corner of the room.
A whispered spell and the little blue blob floated up to her face where she peered at it curiously. It had stick-like blue limbs with translucent pearl wings and its pointed blue face scowled at her. It's ridiculously oversized floppy hat covered in stars and teddy bears, sinking down over its pointed ears slowly, somewhat ruining the menace.
She partially released the spell and the creature started cursing her in a very high pitched voice causing some very interesting results.
Hermione scowled and poked it sharply. "That's enough out of you, you foul-mouthed little beast!" she said angrily. An indignant squawk and the creature was silent.
She woke Minerva quickly with a wave of her wand. "Headmistress, are you alright?" Hermione called.
A disorientated groan emerged from her position on the floor, but it wasn't long before the disgruntled woman was peering at the creature next to Hermione. "It appears to be a Sleeping Fairy, or ‘Sandman’ as I believe Muggles have named it," she finally concluded. "They, like most fairies, are attracted to high levels of magic. I would imagine that Harry's condition is what attracted it here in the first place."
Hermione sighed. "Does that mean that there will be more of these?"
The Headmistress sighed and settled her hat more firmly on her head and sighed. "I shall call for Hagrid to come. He will no doubt have an interesting suggestion to make," she said somewhat resignedly.
Hermione plucked the little wand from the Fairy's hand, transfigured a small cage from a vase that was sitting on one of the side tables and placed the creature in it before she released the spell. As Minerva left the room, she made her way back to Harry's room. The sooner she solved this, the better.
"But Snape, you are the only one who can!"
"I said no!"
The imposing Potions Master stopped his swift stride and swirled to face Hermione who only just managed to stop herself from running bodily into the man. "Miss Granger, I have no desire to become involved in your half-witted schemes. You have no idea that this will work."
She waved the piece of parchment she clutched in her hand in front of his face angrily. "This proves it!"
He raised an eyebrow and sneered. "Proves what, exactly?"
"I found this in Harry's room. To Muggles it is the fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty, written by Charles Perrault in 1697. To the Wizarding World it remains an historical account of an assassination attempt," she said triumphantly. He turned away.
"Look," she said urgently, "you said it yourself, the potion hasn't been heard of since the 1600's, the same time spindles were banned. It makes sense," she insisted.
Snape gave her an incredulous look. How does believing that a Muggle fairy tale is actually based in historical wizarding fact make sense?"
"But you can't deny it matches!" She counted off points almost violently on her fingers. "Harry is in a magical sleep that no one can awaken him."
"Of his own doing!" he protested, folding his arms and all but tapping his foot in annoyance.
Ignoring him she continued. "Two, he pricked his finger on a spindle."
"And who knows why he thought that pricking his finger on a spindle dipped in potion is a correct procedure for administering anything. I ask you! He is as delusional as you are."
"Three; briars have grown around his room and only let you in without any difficulty."
"Finally something obeys me," Snape muttered.
"Four, people are falling asleep all over the castle," she finished triumphantly.
"We have an infestation!" Snape threw his hands up in desperation.
"Which all leads to the fact that only leads to one conclusion. You must kiss Harry to wake him."
There was silence. Hermione had watched Snape's face almost flush purple in annoyance over the last few minutes, his whole body almost vibrating with agitation, but now he stood very, perfectly, still. His cheeks flushed to a normal, if embarrassed, pink.
"You don't know what you're asking."
"Listen to me, it's perfect; you are a Prince, and unless I've been reading too much into this, you care for Harry!"
"I understand that insanity runs in the family. I suggest that you never reproduce."
Hermione scowled and pointed imperiously at Harry. "You know the passwords to his rooms, and you have Quidditch magazines in your room!"
"Have you ever thought of taking a calming potion for this hysteria of yours?"
She took a slow step forwards, and for a brief second she saw hesitancy in his face.
She took another step,
Snape looked positively nervous now; an angry Hermione Granger was a sight to behold. She stopped inches away from him. Her arm rose and pointed at the sleeping figure. "Kiss…"she said quietly but dangerously, "him."
They stood head to head for a moment. Severus Snape, once Death Eater, spy, and all-round git, was the first to crack.
"I'm not sure that inappropriate behaviour under duress is exactly what your story dictates, but," he said after seeing her face turn to thunder, "I suppose I have no choice."
She folded her arms and watched him as he moved over to the bed.
"It's not a death sentence," she said softly, as he paused by Harry's bedside. He reached his fingers out ghosting over the man's cheek for a brief second, sighed and turned to face her.
"I know," he said equally softly.
With a hint of satisfaction that she had been right she watched as Snape's leaned down and brushed his lips over Harry's. Hermione cringed, waiting for the screams and shouts that she knew had to erupt.
She was about to ask Snape to try again, when the man swooped down and took Harry's lips firmly. She held her breath as her friend's eyes fluttered open. But instead of the yells she had expected, he smiled as he saw the man waiting a breath away. Snape's hair lost its battle with gravity and fell over his face, hiding his expression.
"You've been shirking your duties, brat," he told Harry reproachfully, and with, Hermione wondered, Affection?
"I'm sorry," Harry replied, his voice raspy with disuse.
"What were you looking for?"
"My fairy tale?" It was more of a question than an answer.
"I thought you would be tired of stories by now. Gryffindors and their ridiculous sentimentality."
A sad smile flickered over Harry's face and he reached up to push Snape's hair behind his ear, his fingers lingering against the older man's skin. Their lips met again in a slow, tentative kiss.
Hermione smiled and turned away. She could give Harry hell later. For now, she would let them have their happily ever after.