Expecting this kind of behaviour from his twin fathers, he caught it, and popped it in his mouth. A moment later, a four foot tall, white haired, bearded, and wrinkled man sat where the black haired young boy had just been. "Works!" Fred crowed, slapping his twin on the back. George pretended to stagger forward.
Sabastian, just arrived on the top of the stairs, barely gave the scene a second glance, his black eyes going straight to Fred. "Daddies, Dad wants to see you in your bedroom," the formerly identical twin of Salazar told them, looking almost scared.
"Is something wrong?" George asked, straightening.
Salazar cleared a spot on the stair he occupied to allow them passage. Both Weasleys climbed past. As he went by, Fred offered, "It should wear off in a few minutes." When they reached his other twin, he asked, "Did your dad say what was up?"
Sabastian shook his head. "Nuh-uh. But it's something bad."
Fred and George exchanged worried looks. "Guess we should go see what he wants." George nodded.
The bedroom looked just the same as ever. A large, neatly made bed filled a good portion of it. The darkly stained wooden closet door was fully closed. Matching dressers lined two other walls, and a deep green armchair sat in a corner. Snape sat in the chair, looking paler than normal, and completely expressionless. Troubled black eyes opened and landed on them when he felt their entrance. "Close the door."
Not a good sign, but the Weasleys did as instructed. When the man cast silencing and locking charms on it, they knew something was very wrong. "Did someone die?" Fred asked, jumping to the most obvious conclusion. "It wasn't Mum or Dad, was it? Oh no. The babies -"
"Are fine. Nobody died." But his expression - or lack thereof - did little to ease his worry. Only those black eyes gave anything away, and what they showed was nothing good.
"Harry fell playing Quiddich, and he'll never walk again." Magic could heal almost any injury, but something truly awful must have happened.
George elbowed him. "Snape would be dancing in joy if that happened, idiot. Let him tallk."
That George's quip didn't raise so much as an eyebrow proved that Snape was very . . . some negative emotion. Which emotion was hard to read from those shadowed eyes and blank face. "I." Snape closed his eyes and turned his head away. Fred had never seen him fumble for words before. His gut clenched and he lowered himself onto the bed, expecting the news to be absolutely unspeakable. Assuming Snape ever managed to articulate what was wrong. George followed his brother's example.
"What's wrong, Professor?" George prompted, using a voice he had picked up from dealing with hysterical four year olds.
That, at least, earned him a glare, but it was short lived. "There are several tenets in the unspoken contract between us," he began. Fred swallowed. Talks about the relationship between him, his brother, and Snape were scrupulously avoided. To bring it up now, in such an oppressive atmosphere, promised nothing but trouble. "Allow me to speak some of them now, and tell me whether these were my imagination or true." The twins nodded apprehensively. "The first and simplest is that you are allowed into my life, manor, and family without restriction."
That was simple? Fred didn't want to see the more complicated tenets. He exchanged a wide eyed look with George. The return look told him he was responsible for the answer Snape expected. "We . . . that isn't quite how we termed it. We saw it more like . . . "
"Mum forced you to let us know your kids because Fred was moderately helpful in their conception."
Snape huffed something that might have been a cough or a stifled laugh. "I suppose they resolve to the same thing. The second is, in the presence of my children, I am obligated to refer to the youngest Mr. Weasley as 'your Uncle Ron'."
Both twins would have burst out laughing at his distressed look if they weren't so worried about where this was leading. "Right," Fred agreed.
"The third is that the pair of you have sole right and priviledge to my bedchamber and my person. All future children are to be fathered by you."
Both twins gaped at him like trolls.
He gave them a low level glare. "That is for my own conscience. Whether or not you require it of me as well is immaterial." Then he looked away again. "And now I haven't even that small comfort." Fred looked at George and found his own stunned expression looking right back at him. Before either could ask if he meant what it sounded like he meant, Snape continued in a harsh voice, "I carry bastards."
Fred tried not to feel like someone had thrust a dagger deep into his gut and twisted. He tried to surpress the flash of jealously. He tried to convince himself that he had not been betrayed. A moment before, he had been about to say that he and George held no such expectation of their co-parent. That the older man's phrasing of the tenet sounded dangerously close to marriage. That there was no commitment between the Weasley twins and Snape.
Fortunately, George spoke before Fred did. "Don't take this the wrong way, Snape, but, aren't all your children bas- illegitimate?"
Fred must have blinked, because Snape was no longer in his chair, but pacing. "Not to me. Not the girls, and not the quads, especially. They were planned. Even the boys live with all of their parents now, so that lessens their stigma. Their other fathers acknowledge them, treat them like they were legitimate. It's entirely different. But these?" He jerked an angry gesture towards his stomach, and the knife in Fred's gut twisted again. "They're an insult to you and a mark of my shame. They're the embarrassment and proof of infidelity that bastards are supposed to be."
"You didn't want the boys either, at first," George pointed out reasonably. "Do you know yet how many more children we should expect?" His lack of reaction was beginning to grate on Fred's nerves. Shouldn't his twin feel at least some of the outrage that still coursed through Fred? Or, the incharitible thought shot through Fred's mind, is it because the other kids are actually mine and not truly George's? He tried to dispell the unworthy idea from his mind but it had hooked itself deeply into his brain and would not be dismissed so easily.
"Six," Snape whispered, "once the triplets twin themselves."
Fred closed his eyes, trying to gain some kind of control over his whirling emotions of jealousy, anger, fear, worry, and concern. "Will you be all right with six? Especially so soon after the quads?" And how had the bloody man gotten pregnant in the first place? It wasn't like it could happen accidently.
Snape returned to his chair, suddenly without the energy required to keep up his pacing. "Poppy says I should be fine. It isn't as if I've never done multiple births before. The parts are new, so I am actually safer than I was for the quads." Fred flinched in guilt.
"If I may ask, if you're so against these kids, why did you cast the spell before . . . um."
George's question was a good one, but he missed a point, "And whose bastards are they, anyway?" By the reproachful look George shot him and the guilty one Snape wore, he imagined his anger and accusation had spilled into his words more than he had intended.
Snape turned his head away again, and closed his eyes. "This morning was Draco's wedding, I believe you knew that." They nodded, though he couldn't see it. "The cermony was about as dull as you can expect for a young couple of that social standing. The reception took place directly after. I was once a respected member of that society. I had, after all, been Head of Slytherin House, as well as a high ranked Death Eater. I no longer hold either title, and there are whispers enough that I had betrayed Voldemort.
"If that wasn't bad enough, I have acknowledged my illegitimate children as my heirs. Worse, I bore them myself, thus putting me in the same class as an unmarried pregnant girl or mother." He opened his eyes and looked at the twins again, his face showing nothing of his thoughts. "I will get to your questions. But I must explain the situation before it can make any sense." He drew in another breath, and returned to the narrative, "Homosexuality is not approved any more than extramarital child bearing. Most knew Lucius was, but he was a Malfoy and he was discreet about it. He did have a wife and child, so it was never spoken of. I, by bearing my own children and with rumour ripe about whom I live with, flaunted it. Then, in addition to everything else, my partner is not even Slytherin.
"Had my relationship with Lucius come to light, it would have been a small scandal. Lucius would have made a few public denials on the arm of Narcissa that nobody would believe, but everyone would accept. My name would have gotten a little muddy, but it would have been able to recover. Lucius Malfoy, after all, had found me acceptable to take to bed. But Gryffindors? The only thing worse is muggles.
"Finally, let us come to the point that there are two of you. That is perversion on par with incest." He sat back in the chair and rubbed his eyes. "I am, quite bluntly, a disgrace to the House. To Hogwarts, as well, according to Minerva. My one redeeming grace was that we had made something resembling a family. Three pregnancies all by the same father. Said father taking an active role in the upbringing of his children. The only thing missing was the marriage contract. The only peculiarity was that there were no women and three men. But it was working. The children were happy. The parents didn't hate each other.
"Some Slytherins decided to take away that veneer of respectabiliy and make it clear to myself and all others that I am no longer accepted among them. I had taken my farewells to the bride and groom and left the reception early. I had no sooner stepped outside the Hall when my wand was taken from me. Eight men surrounded me." Snape's voice held no emotion in it, as though describing something had read about. His eyes stared into the middle distance, darting around, seeming to be reliving the scene in his mind as he told it. Fred and George barely dared breathe. All anger and jealousy had fled, replaced with fearful anticipation.
"I was brought to a gardener's shed, out behind the reception hall. I tried to break away, but they just petrified and levitated me. They locked the door and soundproofed the small building. Then they released the two spells holding me. I fell on my back, and was immediately held down by two of the men. I recognized only half of them. Marcus Flint's father. Blaise Zabini's father. Milicent Bulstrode's uncle. Alexander Cummings. Zabini seemed the ringleader and he was the one who cast the spell to remove my clothing."
George's eyes flashed dangerously, and Fred wondered where he could find these monsters.
"It would have been better if they had raped me as I had assumed they were going to do." Snape paused briefly, collecting his thoughts. "Zabini cast the hermaphrodite spell next. It was the first time it happened while I was naked, and I watched with the same fascination as the others as I saw my body change. One of the men holding me down touched my breast, tentatively, like he didn't believe it was real. I wish it wasn't.
"'Feels like a girl's,' he said. I tried to fight it, but two more men forced my legs apart, and fingers touched inside me. 'Definitely a girl in here,' that one said, then my legs were released and those two returned to the half circle surrounding me. I did what I could to preserve my modesty, but it really wasn't much. I was naked, held to the floor by two brutes, and gawked about by six more. Clearly, they weren't comfortable with raping a man, so they made me not a man. I tried to explain that if they raped me now, I would get pregnant, but they only laughed. 'Better our bastards than Weasley bastards,' Flint said."
Fred clenched his hands into fists, swearing bloody revenge on the evil prick.
"Then Zabini knelt on the floor beside me. 'There will be no rape here today,' he told me. He touched my face. 'You have this chance to prove you are not a slut.' I failed. Quite spectacularly. It was not until I had spread my legs for each and every one of them, twice, no less, that I was reminded of my condition. Seven of them had gone, leaving only myself and Zabini. Zabini held my wand, and I still lay on the floor, exhausted, sated, shameless, and dripping semen. 'Take this and your new bastard as payment, whore,' he said and tossed me the wand." He closed his eyes and waited.
Fred felt ill. George looked the same, but managed to say calmly, "So do you want us to officially adopt the new six to make a point, or just keep it unofficial like we've been doing?"
Both Fred and Snape stared at him as if he'd lost his mind. "Sperm do not make a father," George told them, adding rhetorically, "Or do you consider me less a father than Fred?" That anyone might think that apparently didn't occur to him.
"No," Snape denied immediately. "You and Fred are identical twins, George. Fred's genes are your genes. It doesn't matter which of you did the fertilization. You were both there in bed while it happened. But these, they're Slytherin bastards. You were at Zonko's while I submitted willingly to enemies. I do not expect you to have anything to do with the brats."
"They're Dora and Jill's siblings," George said simply. "That makes them our sons or daughters. We'll even give them the Weasley name if you don't want them to be Snapes. Then we can outnumber you again."
"Can't have that," Snape said quietly, looking as close to stunned as he ever came. "No, they are Snapes. But for first names, nothing that starts with S unless it is something very Muggle like Steven or Scott. We'll possibly call one Godric. Another Albus. Names that the Slytherins would hate. Decorate their room entirely in red and gold. We'll definitely need a James and a Harry, too. One set of girls will be Lily and Minerva." He sounded almost darkly gleeful at these plans. "And we can only hope that every last one of them goes to Gryffindor or Hufflepuff." A frightening smile touched his eyes then. "And once the paternity spells name their other father, I'll keep them informed of their bastard's progress, the owls addressed to their wives." He looked at them, "The pair of you will help me make those letters . . . entertaining, will you not?"
Wicked smiles blossomed on identical faces. "Charging Hippogriffs couldn't stop us."
A silence fell between them, growing more awkward by the moment. Finally, just to break it, Fred made the obvious statement, "So you're pregnant again." Now it was Fred's turn to get stared at, his sanity in doubt. "I just mean, so now we can, well, have fun at night again?"
Snape opened his mouth, then closed it again. Shook his head to clear it. Tried again.
"Fred, he was just raped he's not going to want -"
"I was not raped," Snape cut him off abruptly. "If you still wish to touch me," he sounded uncertain about the likelihood of this, "you may."
George frowned. "Are you sure?"
Snape nodded, "Yes, of course. But, I would like that it to be only the girl's hole first, so I can get the feel of them out of me."
Fred grinned. "If it is that urgent, we can do it now."
Blinking once in surprise, Snape shook his head. "I need to take a few more showers first."
Fingers on his face. Brushing along one cheek, exerting no pressure, only feeling his skin's texture, leaving a sensation in their wake. A sensation that was not welcome, but not entirely bad. The fingers trailed up onto his forehead, sweeping back greasy locks of hair, then running down over his eyes, making them close, raising his heartrate. This repeated, alternating between his cheeks twice, then gently rubbing along his jawline, coming up to breifly kiss his lips with the soft fingertips, then back to swirling around his cheeks again.
It was relaxing, or it would have been if heavy hands hadn't restrained his body against the floor. If his heart didn't pound its need to be away.
He allowed it, rathering the fingers caress his sharp face than his unnatural soft curves. But then lips pressed against his own, unwelcome, awkward from their relative positions. He turned his head away and glared, but that only earned a chuckle. "You'll want it soon enough."
Then the fingers began to trace his skin lower. On the neck, his shoulders, where they weren't pinned down by meaty hands, his sides, his stomach. His breasts. Oh, Merlin, his breasts. Lips touched him there, too, completely unlike the babies who had so recently stopped nursing. His body betrayed him. His cock twiched, and his breasts peaked. His breathing became ragged. He felt wet between the legs. He tried disassociating himself from his body, but that only resulted in an embarrassing moan, and his legs falling apart from each other.
He quickly regained control of himself and corrected the leg problem and tensed under the ministrations. It didn't last. Mouth and hands ravished him from the waist up. The mouth found a spot in the hollow between neck and shoulder that released his tension as if a dam had broke. Involunarily, he turned his head to give it more access. The wetness down below increased, and an itch he recognized but wished he didn't made itself known.
The hands holding him down moved to his wrists, giving his seducer more skin to work with. Every inch of his torso found an unlikely pleasure in being licked, sucked or kissed. His neck, his ears, too, were not spared. He was hard as stone and his breast rose and fell visibly with every gasping breath he took. The itch was a painful thing now, almost as bad as the tension in his weeping cock.
Lips returned to lips and he did not turn away, though neither did he respond. He became aware of one hand's absence only when it returned, gripping his prick. He gasped, allowing access for the other's tongue. He considered biting, but decided that was unwise with his own cock in the other's hand. A foriegn erection pressed and throbbed against his thigh. The itch redoubled and he thought he moaned again. The enemy tongue explored his mouth, and he allowed the invasion with tightly closed eyes. His fists clenched below the wrists pinned to the floor.
The mouth retreated, and resumed activities elsewhere. His tension eased from him again, somehow finding it less objectionable to be touched intimately than kissed.
The hand continued to work at his cock and he gasped as tremors shot through him. His legs moved apart, just a bit, just enough for the other hand to descend and begin to work away his reluctance. The fingers teased at him, magnifying that traitor itch. It was like being under crutaceous, needing to scream, but not, because you can't let them know it hurts that bad, even though they already know it does. Only now he needed that throbbing cock, still held against his thigh, inside him. Needed it like a starving man needs food.
Then the mouth found somewhere new to suck, and he did scream, raggedly, breathlessly, because nothing had ever prepared him for this. His cock was abandoned as both the hands grabbed his hips to help the man get better purchase with his mouth down where no mouth had business being. His body betrayed him again, arching and spreading his legs as wide as they would go, to let the mouth get at him. Tongue plunged deep and another ragged cry escaped him.
He felt on fire. He couldn't stand this. Mouth pulled away, and eyes met his, reading his need. "Shall I continue?" the slightly raspy voice was smug with triumph.
He closed his eyes, and braced himself for needful but unwelcome invasion. "Go."
He was not disappointed. The blunt tip rested breifly against his opening. "Last chance to say no." The man was insufferable in his victory.
It pressed inside, delicious and filling. He arched, to get more, deeper. The other pulled back, and he made a pathetic noise. The next thrust went deep, breaking past his maidenhead. Both gasped in surprise, he in minor pain. "Virgin, Snape?"
Ignoring the words, he shifted, burying the man still deeper. He just needed to get this over. The man laughed. "All right, my ugly slut, we'll do this your way." He ignored those words, too, concentrating instead on the next thrust which finally went hilt deep, sparking his orgasm in both sets of parts. The man didn't last much longer, and pulled out right away, casting a cleaning spell on himself but not his prey.
"Well, Snape, I guess that proves how easy you are, hmm?" Zabini taunted as the first man covered himself up again.
Still held down at the wrists, he could only glare in fury and flush in shame.
"Still defiant? Walters, why don't you give him a go." And another man took his place. "Remember, Walters, no rape. Give him a chance to say no."
"Of course." Walters didn't even need to use his mouth. His fingers alone were enough to tingle him to anticipation and burning need. He didn't understand how the other man did it, since he avoided touching him everywhere that he would have thought would drive him to distraction. When he was ready to black out from mere fingers on skin alone, they dipped inside, and the sheer unexpectedness drove him over the edge with his own second orgasm.
"Do you wish something more substantial here?" the fingers wiggled.
Resistance already seriously weaked by the first man and the second ejaculation, he only said, "Yes." Again, the blunt tip rested not quite inside him yet. "Are you sure?"
Irritation. "Yes." It pushed hilt deep in one go. It felt good, too good. Guilt and shame wreaked havok within his gut, but his body continued to meet the quickening thrusts that buried a complete stranger's cock deep inside him. The second complete stranger to do so in the last however long it had been. At least this one had a name. He had a fairly strong suspicion that two more complete strangers would soon be taking their own turns with him. Walters finished with him, and he lay still on the ground as the man pulled out and tucked himself back into his trousers.
A man he recognized only as 'Milicent Bulstrode's uncle' settled between slightly bruised legs next. The uncle frowned thoughtfully as he looked at the as yet unwilling body before him.
This once used neither mouth nor fingers, but his wand to stimulate every nerve in his body. When the man touched the wand tip to his entrance and cast again, the sensation was indescrible. "Oh!" He would have ejaculated again, but he hadn't had time to get up yet.
Bulstrode's uncle smirked, "Was that invitation?"
He tingled everywhere, seeking friction that wasn't there. "Bloody Merlin, just go!"
The cock slid in without second questioning only because he pushed himself onto it without waiting for him to ask. Even when the man came, it wasn't enough. The spell, whatever it was that Bulstrode had cast, required sensation fulfillment and Bulstrode just hadn't been large enough to satisfy. He pointed at the brute at his right. "Him now."
Disgust and smugness warred on Zabini's face as he nodded permission to the brute. The big man awkwardly tried to prod him with fingers, but he received a glare for his efforts. "Cock, in, now."
The brute didn't argue. He was far larger than Bulstrode, larger than Bulstrode and Fred combined, even. It was pefect. The brute filled him completely, easing the pinings of the spell. Then the thrusts began and he fought to maintain consciousness and the long, thick cock delved deeper into him than he had ever been penetrated in his life. It was fantastic, and he never wanted it to end. "Oh, GOD!" he cried out in agonized escatsy as the brute came, shooting seed so fast and hard it was almost like an exension of the cock.
"Good dream or bad?" Fred asked, towelling off his hair as he entered the bedroom from the attached bathroom.
Severus jerked his eyes around the familiar setting, recognizing his own furniture and the implications that he was safe and home. He regulated his heart and breathing to more normal rates, and a cleaning charm took care of the mess he had made in the sheets. "Both," he answered Fred's question, still sounding a little breathless.
"Worst kind," Fred comisserated. "What was it about?"
Fred stilled. "Oh." A moment's hesitation, then, "What was good about it?"
Severus looked away, feeling more than a little guilty. "The sex," he said quietly.
He couldn't see the flinch or the flash of jealous anger, but he knew they were there. "What was bad about it?" the question sounded forced between nearly clenched teeth.
"The humiliation. It only took four people before I was ready to take literally anyone who asked. They were right."
"About what?" Fred asked quietly.
"I am a slut."
Fred looked ready to argue, but after a glare, he switched to a smirk. "Well, as long as you're our slut, that's fine." He tossed the towel back into the bathroom, and stripped off his terry cloth robe.
Playing along, Severus threw off the sheets, and laid back on the pillow, spreading his legs and lifting his hips provocatively.
Fred sent a torn look towards the closed bedroom door, then settled into place, his erection already solid. "George can sit this one out," he decided, then slid in with no preparation. Already wet and aching from the dream-memory, Severus didn't mind at all.
"Daddy, are you having babies again?" Dora Weasley asked as the family settled around the dining room table. August sun shone through the windows, leaving patches of light on the table and high chair trays that one of the ten month old quads kept slapping his tiny hands into. Snape froze as he was lowering himself into his own seat. He had begun showing not quite a month ago, but he hadn't thought any of the children would pick up on it yet. Fred, George, and Snape had decided not to let the kids know of their impending siblings yet. Hermione Granger still believed she could find a way to pause the pregnancy so that the six new ones would not be born until the quads turned four.
"What makes you think that, Dora?"
"Your belly's bigger." The other three children looked at their daddy's belly to see if this was true.
"Jora, you shouldn't call your daddy fat," George told her, with a hint of mischief in his eyes. "Jill! Where are you going?"
Dora's twin slipped out of her chair, and scrambled under the table, popping up again as she squirmed up and onto Daddy's half-occupied chair. She placed her hands deliberately on his chest, and nodded. "You are." It was one of the things they didn't quite understand, but all four twins knew that Daddy had a Mommy shape when he was pregnant.
"But nobody's going to be four this year," Sabastian noted, sounding confused.
Her mission of discovery complete, Jill returned to the floor, scrambled under the table, and returned to her own seat. As Daddy finished sitting down, Dora asked, "Why did the daddies put more babies inside you?"
There was a sudden stillness in the room, and even the quads quieted at the tension growing from the three adults. Daddy finally answered, his words slow and careful, which all four children knew meant they had hit upon a subject that adults wouldn't like hearing about. "It wasn't the daddies this time. Bad men put them there, but your brothers and sisters are still your brothers and sisters, understand?"
They didn't, but they nodded anyway. "Why did bad men give us babies? Aren't babies a good thing?"
"When you want them, yes. But the bad men knew that the quads were too little to stop being littlest. Doctor Granger is trying to find a way to make the babies grow slower so that they won't be ready until the quads turn four."
"That's good," Salazar decided, "That makes the bad men helpful, and that always annoys them."
One of the daddies didn't quite manage to stifle a laugh. The other grinned at the oldest boy, "Our revenge is already planned and awaits only the birth."
"Then why wait?" Sabastian asked. "Shouldn't revenge be swift?"
Daddy shook his head solemnly. "No, Sabastian, the best revenges are always the slowest."
"Snape, don't say stuff like that in front of the girls. You can make the boys into Slytherins all you like, but the girls are supposed to be Gryffindors," Daddies Fred complained, but the kids all knew he wasn't completely serious. All four knew that the boys were expected to go to Slytherin, and the girls Gryffindor, but they also knew that if they didn't, it wasn't the end of the world. Especially for the girls. Salazar was fairly certain that if he didn't get Slytherin, Daddy would be somewhat disappointed, despite assurances to the contrary.
Over the next few weeks, Daddy's belly continued to grow, and the babies started kicking. Then it stopped growing, though the kicking kept going, proving the babies were alive. Time passed. Weeks turned to months, months turned to years. Daddy and the babies stayed the same while the quads grew and began walking and talking. The girls began at Hogsmeade Pre-Wizarding School. The boys got their Hogwarts letters shortly before Daddy started growing again. Fred and George brought them to Diagon Alley because Daddy refused to 'lay foot in that cesspit'.
Sabastian and Salazar did not find it to be a cesspit at all. Ollivander sold them wands - hickory and dragons heartstring for Salazar and ash with pheonix feather for Sabastian. Both nine inches long. Their schoolbooks were found easily, though, while they waited in line to pay, a man they didn't know approached them. "So the Weasleys begin at Hogwarts again," the stranger remarked, with a glance at Salazar's Standard History of Spells (Grade 1).
"Our sisters are Weasleys," Sabastian corrected politely. "We're Snapes."
"Hmm," the man murmured. "Usually a child takes their father's name, not their mother's." His eyes flicked up to the increasingly furious faces of Fred and George. "Oh, but I forgot. These are bastard children, aren't they?" Fred's only answer was a flying tackle.
"Get him good, Fred!" George cheered, unable to join, burdened as he was with a stack of two copies each of A Beginner's Guide to Transfiguration, A History of Magic, and Magical Theory.
"Get his nose, Fred!" Salazar chimed in, while Sabastian urged, "Rip his robes, Dads!"
The fight was broken up quickly by two store employees, one of which gave Fred a bemused look. "Following your in father's footsteps, Mr. Weasley?"
Fred shrugged, sparing the man a brief grin before returning to the glare at his opponent. "Better I follow mine than yours, Flint. Your father's the real bastard, Marcus."
The tackled man appeared taken aback by the venom in Fred's voice. The store employee cleared his throat nervously, and managed to usher them towards the door, "Well, you both need to leave the shop."
Fred nodded, then met George's raised brow gaze. "Meet you outside." George nodded, a smirk playing about features.
"What was that all about?" Sabastian asked as soon as door closed behind both men.
George sighed and tried to ignore the attention still fixed on him and the boys. "Some wizards, espeically former Slytherins, take offense at the fact that your father, Fred, and me aren't married."
"Do boys marry boys?"
"Some. Not many in the wizarding world though. Most wizards don't think it's right."
"Then how come they want you and Dads Fred and Dad to marry?"
"They don't." Realizing his answers were only confusing the boys more, he added, "It's just that children are supposed to have married parents. If they don't, some ignorant people reach the conclusion that the children are unwanted, and the word for unwanted children of unmarried parents is bastard. It's a rude word and an insult and it doesn't apply to either of you, the girls, or the quads."
The twins nodded. But then Salazar added, "Or the babies."
George did not answer.
"Or the babies, right, Dads George?" Salazar insisted.
"Here is not the place for this talk, Salazar." By the obvious disappointment of the people directly behind and in front of them in line, the proof of George's words was plain. "And the babies are very much wanted. Just try to tell the quads otherwise." The boy grinned. The quads had known for as long as they could understand English that the kicking bulge in Dad's belly was their fourth birthday present.
When the four twins returned to Snape Manor, with all of the younger pair's Hogwarts necessities, no further incidents had occured. Safe within the walls of their home, Sabastian asked the question that had been bothering him since Flourish and Blotts. "Why are the babies bastards if we're not?"
Dad looked at them in surprise from where he sat in a chair reading. "George, why is my son calling his siblings bastards?"
"Because Marcus Flint called him and Salazar the same at the bookstore." Something dangerous flashed in those black eyes but it was quickly surpressed. "I explained what a bastard was - a child of unmarried parents who wasn't wanted - and told them they, the girls, and the quads did not meet the definition."
"Which leaves the babies," Salazar pointed out. "But they're wanted, right?"
"By half their parents, yes," Dad answered. "Remember what we said about how I got the babies? The Dads didn't put them in me this time. That makes the bad guys their fathers."
"So their other father doesn't want them." Dad nodded slowly. Sabastian went to put his hand on Dad's belly. "Well, good. Now we can keep them. And the Dads want them, so it's all better this way." Dad smiled.
"Why did Fred call the man a bastard after they fought?"
Dad looked up at Dads Fred, who blushed faintly. "I didn't call Marcus a bastard. I called his father one."
Dad gave the small tight smile that he wore when he was pleased about something that normally would result in a lecture. "Well, Salazar, bastard is a vile insult that many people, especially those of Slytherin families like Flint's, find greatly offense, even if it isn't strictly true. It has also come to be synonomous with 'nasty unwanted bad guy,' which Mr. Flint very much is."
It had been over eight years since Salazar and Sabastian stood in the Great Hall. Despite that, it felt like coming home. The enchanted ceiling shone with stars above them, and Santa Claus still sat in the center of the Head Table. They new he wasn't Santa, now, of course, but that was how they'd known him for most of their lives. "Snape, Sabastian!" Professor McGonagall called out from next to the Sorting Hat. The Hall didn't quite fall silent, but it was close.
Sabastian took the stool and the hat fell down over his eyes. Slytherin, he begged it.
*What have we here? A Snape? What shall I do with you?*
Slytherin, he thought at it as hard as he could, Dad'll be so disappointed otherwise.
*Hmm. Cunning and ambition you have, a thirst to prove your worth. Yes, I think your father is right. SLYTHERIN!!!*
Only a handful of Slytherins clapped and cheered for their newest member. When he was seated, he waited patiently as McGonagall called, "Snape, Salazar!"
Salazar took the stool and the hat fell down over his eyes. Slytherin, he begged it.
*Another Snape! I suppose you want to be with your brother?*
Absolutely, he thought cheerfully at it, I'll hex you if you don't!
Sabastian cheered loudest of all as his twin joined him at the Slytherin table. The rest of their House was as enthusiastic as they had been for Sabastian. "We're gonna be popular," Salazar remarked sarcastically, staring down a few glares from elsewhere at the table.
"C'mon," Sabastian grinned back, "it'll be fun. There are enough Wheezes in our trunks to take care of most any problem."
"And enough hexes in our heads to take care of the rest," Salazar added.
Sabastian shook a mock chiding finger at his brother, "You know the Dads told us not to do too much of that."
"The Dads are 'idiot Gryffindors'," Salazar countered, doing a halfway decent impression of their father. "Who're you gonna listen to, them or the former Head of Slytherin?"
Sabastian pretended to think about that. "And the former Head's advice was to hex first ask questions later, right?"
Salazar grinned back. "You got it."
As one, they turned to the pair of second years eavesdropping on the short conversation. Together, they drew their wands, and, in unison, they cast a charm that turned their hair red. "What are your names?" Salizar asked, intent on following his father's instructions to the letter. Ask questions later.
"Jacob Walters," one of them answered, checking himself for the the effect of the spell he had just been hit with, a glance at his friend resulted in a small shriek. "Erik! Your hair!"
Erik looked up from his own self-review, and gaped at his friend. "Yours, too!"
"Bloody hell! Turn it back!"
Both twins shook their heads. "We've got questions first," Sabastian told them. "First -"
"Why is everybody hostile to us?"
The second years exchanged looks, and Erik answered, "You're Snape's bastards."
The twins frowned. "No we aren't. The babies aren't born yet."
"All of our parents want us."
Jacob scowled. "That doesn't matter. They're stil all unmarried men. And there's three of them."
Salazar shrugged. "So?"
"Do you know anyone else with three fathers?"
The twins exchanged a look. "Well, no," Sabastian admitted.
"The babies will have four."
"But the bad one doesn't want them."
"So it's like having three."
The second years looked blank. "What babies?"
"The ones that have lived in Dad's belly for the last three years. They'll be born in November finally." Sabastian nodded confirmation of Salazar's words. "Do you think Santa will let us go home for the birth?" he added, asking his twin.
Sabastian shrugged. "If he's not still mad at Dad, maybe. Okay, second question," he changed directions abruptly, focusing on the second years.
"Who's the Head of House?"
"Professor Grecio, the DADA teacher."
"Who teaches potions?"
"Professor Westlake. She's a Ravenclaw mudblood."
The twins looked at each other. "Potions: Westlake, a Ravenclaw," Sabastian repeated. "Head of House: Grecio, DADA. Was that everything Dad wanted us to find out?"
Salazar looked at the Head Table. "Flitwick, McGonagall, Santa, and Sprout still present."
"Filch and the cat," Sabastian added, catching the pair loitering at a side door. "Still present."
"Shouldn't that cat be dead yet? It was old when we were babies."
Their conversation was interrupted by a plaintative, "Would you turn our hair back now?"
The twins looked at the second years in surprise. "Oh, yeah. Forgot."
Severus raised an eyebrow at the letter from the twins. "Well, a week in and they've already got detention."
The Weasleys grinned. "What did they do?"
"Turned the entire first year Slytherin class into canaries."
The twins frowned. "And they got detention for that?"
"They did it during Transfiguration class."
Fred blinked, and George frowned. "Then it wasn't Canary Creams."
"Nor the base potion I mixed up for them."
Both twins turned to stare at him. "You remember the base potion for Canary Creams?"
He frowned back, "Of course. We spent almost an hour discussing it."
"Twelve and a half years ago."
"I am a potions master even if I am unemployed."
"Huh," Fred laughed. "Ever consider gainful employment?"
"In a joke shop?"
Severus looked at them in horror. "No!"
They shrugged. "Worth a shot. Hey, so if it wasn't the base and it wasn't the Creams, then how did those two devils turn their entire class into canaries?"
"Transfiguration?" George suggested uncertainly.
"That's far too advanced for them. Two of them, turning seven other people into canaries?"
"We don't know that it happened all at once."
"Minerva would have stopped it before it got through seven students."
They fell into a thoughtful silence. "I suppose we'll just have to ask them when they come home for the births."
"The Headmaster gave permission?"
Severus nodded. "The owl came this morning."
As the time until the births drew nearer, the dreams started again. Except they weren't dreams. They were memories.
"Will you take me?" "May I?" "Ready for me, slut?" "All set?"
"Yes." He spreads his legs and takes the offered organ into him. Some were fast, some were rough, some were even gentle, slow, and leisurely. As if he weren't a slut being fucked again and again on the dirt floor of a garden shed. The reminder of that would come soon enough, when one man finishes with him and another takes him place, never letting him him just fall into the exhausted slumber he so desperately needs.
"Slut?" "Ready?" "May I continue?"
"Just go." Two times each. Eight men. Three hours. After the first four he had been too tired to care anymore and gave permission as soon as they asked. Some took advantage of that lassidute and just screwed him. Others enjoyed touching him, making him react in ways that both exhausted him more and would later mortify him. At the time, though, he simply didn't care anymore and let his body do as it pleased.
The dreams jumped from one man to another, not neccessarily going in order, but after four nights of it, he had relived every last time at least once. Some got replayed four or five times. The first four in particular. The last one, too.
It was the brute again. The one who had gone after Bulstrode in the first round. The one who had finished him off and made him scream louder than even Fred and George together ever had. "Go," he gave permission without waiting to be asked. It filled him again, feeling just as good without Bulstrode's spell to confuse the issue. "Yes," he whispered, and the brute actually smiled at him.
He plunged deep with his second thrust, eliciting Severus's last ejaculation of the day and his second, "Oh, GOD!" Large hands brushed sweaty hair out of Severus's eyes, and the gesture of seeming concern prompted Severus to wrap his legs around the man and pull himself even farther onto that great cock. Meaty hands planted on the floor on either side of Severus's head, and the thrusts began in earnest. Agony. Sweet, perfect agony. His lower back was slammed into the dirt time and time again, the giant prick fought its way unbelievably deep within him. That he couldn't feel it in his throat was a source of astonishment.
When the brute came, Severus did black out.
"Water broke!" Fred's shout snapped him from his sleep. The bed was drenched from the rupture of three amnionic sacks. George was already at the fireplace calling for Poppy.
It took longer than normal for her to arrive, but the appearance of Salazar and Sabastian right after her explained the delay. The boys were sent to join their siblings in the quads' room.
The swearing began a few hours later, with far less focus on Fred and George than the last two labours had produced. Flint, Zabini, Bulstrode, Walters, Cummings, and Bloody Brute all took turns being flayed about everything from hygiene to ancestry to their prospects in the afterlife, including how they'd get there. The insults and death threats were far more savage than anything ever hurled at the Weasleys.
Hermione Granger-Weasley arrived in plenty of time to assist with the actual births, two of which were breach. Two boys were born first, then two more boys, followed by two girls. In order of birth, they were named Albus Godric Snape, Godric Albus Snape, Harry Filius Snape, Filius Harry Snape, Lily Minerva Snape, and Minerva Lily Snape. Sylvia claimed Lily as hers. Severin wanted Harry, as Uncle Harry was one of his favorite relatives, much to the dismay of his father. Sildore took Filius because his twin took Filius's twin. Sabrina collected Minerva. The remaining two went to Dora (Godric) who was quite pleased to finally get her boy, and Jill (Albus).
Severus nursed Godric and Albus, while each of the quads were allowed, under strict supervision to hold their sibling and feed him or her a bottle. Giving Albus over to Mimi the House Elf to tuck him into bed, Severus looked over at Poppy. "I thought we agreed on November 11 as their birthday."
Poppy smiled at the exhausted man. "So we missed it by eight days. Would you have rather it been November 19 instead of the third?"
Severus gave her a bemused look. "Frankly, after three years of being noticably pregnant with them, sixteen days really doesn't make a difference."
Poppy laughed. "I suppose it doesn't, at that."
"Help me up."
She stared at him. "Severus, you just spent nine hours in labour, and birthed sextuplets after over three years of pregnancy, you should sleep."
He glared at her. "I've spent three years in this house, most of that time in this room. I'm going into the nursery now to find out their parentage, and I will do it with or without help." He scuttled over towards to the side of the bed to prove it.
Poppy frowned but snapped her fingers and called, "Grady!" The house elf popped into the room expectantly. "Fetch Fred and George." The house elf popped out of the room. The twins arrived a short while later. The mediwitch turned her scowl on them. "Your . . . Severus would like to go to the nursery now. He's not going anywhere without two people to help him stand."
Fred grinned as Severus glowered. "Our Severus, huh?"
"All right, our Severus, up we go," George said, as both twins hefted him to his feet. They made their way slowly to the nursery, where Severus stopped at the first crib he came to. One of the girls slept there.
"Paternis." First the name Severus Snape appeared in pink letters over the girl's slumbering form, then blue letters appeared below that Elijah Walters. Severus memorized the name, ignoring the physical flinch the name produced from Fred. The next wore a braclet with Mimi's neat script on it, spelling out the name Albus Godric. "Paternis." Again, his own name in pink letters, and below it, blue. Zachary Goyle.
"Oh, no," George moaned.
Severus closed his eyes, trying to remember the eight faces. None of them had been Gregory Goyle's father. Goyle Sr. had been sent to Azkaban along with Crabbe Sr. and Lucius. The brute, then, he had something of Goyle's features in his face, and his size was certainly appropriate for one of that line. Merlin, of all the people he had sex with that day, why was it a Goyle whom he enjoyed the most and who managed to create a child? It was even more humiliation to pile upon a day already drowned in it. And he gave Albus's name to that brute's bastard.
He moved on along the cribs until he reached the boy with a bracelet proclaiming him to be Filius Harry. "Paternis." His name appeared in pink, while the blue letters spelled out Tambric Albright.
"Three different fathers," Poppy said, managing to keep all judgement from her voice, but not her eyes.
Severus only nodded, filing the three names away for future study and investigation. "I'll go back to bed now," he decided, before any of the rest of them could do it for him.
The next day, he wrote three letters.
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Walters,
It pleases me to announce the birth of your twin daughters, Elijah. They were born on November 3rd of this year; 6 pounds, 2 ounces. They are in excellent health. Their names are Lily Minerva and Minerva Lily, after Lily Evans Potter and Minerva McGonagall. No support or acknowledgement is expected from you, however, I felt you should know. Thank you, Elijah, for this gift to my family.
Mrs. Walters, conception occured on May 17, three years ago, during the reception of Mr. and Mrs. Draco Malfoy's wedding. You may have noted his absence during this time. Development arresting spells prevented birth until yesterday, and as your husband failed to give me his full name, it was not until the girls were born yesterday that I could learn how to contact you of their existance.
PS. I have told my sons to inform your son at Hogwarts of his half-sisters.
This was tied to the leg of brown owl and told to deliver it to Mrs. Deborah Walters.
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Albright,
Congradulations, Tambric, you are a father. Your twin sons were born on November third of this year; 6 pounds 4 ounces. Their health is excellent. I have taken the liberty of naming them Harry Filius and Filius Harry after Harry Potter and Filius Flitwick. Support and acknowledgement of these sons are neither expected nor welcome, I am simply informing you of the addition to your family tree. Thank you for the addition to my own. They will be raised with the best of care among Weasleys and Potters.
Mrs. Albright, I thank you for the loan of your husband on the seventeenth of May, three years ago, during the reception for the wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Draco Malfoy. You, perhaps, noticed his absence. Spellcraft arrested the children's development until my own older children had reached their fourth birthday. Having never been given a name, I fear I could not inform you of your husband's indiscretion until the boys were born.
PS. I have told my daughters to inform your children at Hogsmeade Pre-Wizarding school of their half-brothers.
A black owl left Snape Manor, bearing the letter and instructions to give it to Mrs. Emily Albright.
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Goyle,
Congradulations on your recent marriage. Mrs. Goyle, I commend you on your choice. Your husband is an excellent bed partner. Though I have only felt his seed flow through me twice, I still dream of it. One of these times did, perhaps unfortunately, result in a child, two of them in fact. Twin boys named Albus Godric and Godric Albus, named for two of the world's greatest wizards, Albus Dumbledore and Godric Gryffindor. As you did not know of the children or your husband's past association with me, Mrs. Goyle, I expect no support or acknowledgement of the boys. My partners, Fred and George Weasley, are willing to accept them as their own.
Rest assured, Mrs. Goyle, Zachary was unmarried at the time of conception: May 17, three years ago, during the reception of Draco Malfoy's wedding. I do hope he was not courting you at that time. Due to personal reasons, Zachary's children's development was halted, so my other children could grow older before giving them another sibling. Seeing as how the children are illegitamate, I will not insist that Albus be named as Zachary's heir, despite being his eldest son.
A snowly owl flew this letter toward Mrs. Amanda Goyle.
"Hey, Jacob Walters!" Salazar called out as the second year with that name entered the Great Hall for lunch. The twins had missed morning classes, but their father had sent them back with a mission in time for the midday meal. "You've got half-sisters! Lily and Minerva. They were born yesterday."
Jacob frowned. "What are you talking about?"
"We have sisters in common," Sabastian explained, loud enough for half the Slytherin table to hear. "Your dad put them in ours. They were born yesterday."
"Dad sent your dad an owl about it a few hours ago."
"The girls are cute. Our other sisters, Sylvia and Sabrina, claimed them as their own."
"Dad named them after Lily Potter and Minerva McGonagall." Eyes moved toward the head table where the transfiguration teacher was talking to the Headmaster, unaware of either her namesakes or the Slytherins' attention.
"You'll have to come visit sometime to meet them."
Jacob seemed dumbfounded by this unexpected attack in an undefended quarter. His friend Erik moved away from him, and other students began sneering at him. A seventh year laughed. "So your father lowers himself to touch Weasley property, Walters?"
All three, Salazar, Sabastian, and Jacob, looked furious at this remark. "Our father-" the twins said together, at the same time Jacob began, "My father-"
"- is not Weasley property!"
"- did no such thing!"
Both twins turned on Jacob, "Yes, he did!" Salazar continued, "The paternity test proves it. Paternis!" he cast suddenly at Jacob. Pink letters: Deborah Walters, atop blue letters: Tambric Albright.
Both twins stared. "All right," Sabastian said carefully, "We were wrong. You are not Lily and Minerva's brother."
Salazar grinned gleefully, "You're Harry and Filius's!"
Jacob stared at the fading blue letters in horror. Evil looks appeared on many of the Slytherin's faces. "Welcome to the unmarried parents club!" Sabastian declared cheerfully. "Let's see if we can expand our ranks. Paternis!" he cast at Erik.
"Paternis!" Salazar cast at another first year who was standing too close.
Both spells revealled names with matching last names. "Shucks," Salazar said in mock disappointment, then perked up immediately, "Try again?"
Sabastian grinned, "You bet!"
"Paternis!" they said together. They had just managed to read the matching last names again, when they felt a looming presence behind them. They turned, and found McGonagall standing over them.
"May I ask what is going on here?"
Salazar smiled at her happily. "Sure. We were just telling folks about our new brothers and sisters."
"They were born yesterday."
"Dad named the girls after you."
"Minerva Lily and Lily Minerva."
"And we were just explaining -"
"That Jacob was the girls' half-brother."
"And we demonstrated the spell that proved it."
"But it didn't."
"Because it proved he was Harry and Filius's half-brother, not Minerva and Lily's."
"So we invited him to the unmarried parents club."
"Then we decided to find out if anyone else should be invited."
"But those four don't qualify."
Both twins smiled up at her with the innocent looks the Dads had taught them.
She closed her eyes and looked like she was counting.
"We weren't hexing anybody," Salazar added, because it probably needed to be said.
"Just sabotaging the Walters' respectability," Sabastian finished, though putting it so bluntly made both Salazar and Jacob flinch. Sabastian ignored it. "Revenge for what the bad men did to Dad." He grinned savagely, "Didn't expect to be able to pull in Albright, too."
"Speaking of Albright," Salazar picked up, "Would you tell Professor Flitwick, Dad named one set of our brothers after him, too. Filius and Harry."
"And the Headmaster," Sabastian added. "Godric and Albus are the other set."
McGonagall stared at them. "Severus named one of his children Godric?" she asked in disbelief.
The twins nodded. "He though it would annoy the bad father more than it embarassed him."
"Typical," she muttered, wandering away without taking points or giving a detention. The twins drew their wands again, turning back to their housemates, feral grins on their faces. "Paternis!"
Nobody dared even run as the twins cut a swathe of blue and pink letters along the table, because of the doubt doing so would cast upon their own legitamacy. It was like a second Sorting. In the end, seven more members were added to the Unmarried Parents Club, though they nearly missed one, until somebody called out, "But your father's name is Patrick, not Evan!" And so the boy with an uncle for a father almost missed his opportunity.
"And yourselves?" Jacob asked acidically when they had finished.
They grinned and shrugged at each other, pointing their wands. "Paternis!" In pink came their father's name: Severus Snape, and below were the blue words: Fred Weasley. Sabatian shot a smirk at his brother, "Real shocker, huh?"
"Well, I guess it dispells that Melanie rumour once and for all."
Dora Weasley raised her hand, almost before her teacher finished taking attendance. "Yes, Jill?" the teacher asked. Jill started in surprise, wondering why she was being called on, then grinned at her sister. "Go on, Jill."
"Dora, ma'am," Dora corrected primly, wondering what the point of assigned seats was if they still got mixed up. Maybe she should start wearing Grandma's sweaters more often.
"Dora, I'm sorry, what is it, dear?"
"Jill and I have new brothers and sisters," she announced proudly. "I just wanted to share. They were born yesterday."
The teacher smiled at them. "That is good news. What are their names?"
"Mine is Godric," Dora answered, "Jill's is Albus, and the quads got Harry, Filius, Lily, and Minerva. All Snapes," she added, sounding slightly disappointed, then her dark eyes lit up again, "Though, Dad promises, the next lot will be Weasleys!"
The teacher's smile became strained, but she kept it. Dora continued, bubbling along happily, "Our brothers' twins, Harry and Filius, were fathered by Christopher and Meredith Albright's father. They go to this school. Christopher is in the next year up, and Meredith will go to Hogwarts next year. They're like our new siblings-once-removed or something because we share half-brothers." Finished with the speech her father made her practice until she got it dimple-perfect, she smiled brightly. Step two would be a joint project with Jill on the playground after lunch.
Morning exercises dragged by interminably, and lunch was little faster. When they were finally allowed onto the playground, instead of running to the swings or monkey bars like most of their year group, they sought two particular people whom they had never met before. "There, those are in Meredith's year," Jill decided. "I see Wendy's brother with them." Dora nodded, and the two approached the older students. When they got close enough to be noticed, Jill developed a shy smile, and Dora began to fidget with her skirt. "We're looking for Meredith Albright," Jill told them, rocking from heels to toes and back again.
"I'm Meredith," one of the girls said, stepping forward and giving them an appraising look. "Who are you?"
"Weasley," they finished together. The girl's expression turned distasteful. "We wanted to let you know," Jill began.
"That you have new brothers," Dora finished.
"Harry and Filius," Jill named the boys under discussion.
"They're our brothers, too," Dora added.
"So that makes us related," Jill said brightly.
Meredith made a face of distaste. "What are you little brats talking about?"
"Our brothers -"
"Who share a father -"
"With you," they said together. Dora continued, "So we thought we'd introduce ourselves-"
"Since you're like a long-lost sister now."
Meredith looked at them as if they'd gone mad, and the twins just giggled and ran off, content in their success of breaking the news in front of witnesses. Daddy had been very insistant about that part. Proud and skipping in their delight after completing their father's mission, they decided that it would be fun to repeat the process with Christopher.
Severus had expected uninvited guests on the first Saturday since the babies' arrival. Planned for them even. The house elves had prepared a nice selection of cauldron cakes in between tending the sextuplets that he could not care for by himself. Rare were the moments when they were all asleep, and most of the time at least one of them was crying. In the four days since their birth, he usually did not bother to completely button his shirt. He would need to nurse the next child only twenty minutes later.
The girls and the quads helped with feeding them the supplemental bottles, but it was the elves who took care of diaper changing and baths. The twins supervised the feedings or fetched things for Severus, when they weren't at the store, but it was a Hogsmeade weekend, and so they had left for the day.
When the wards rang, warning him of visitors on the premises, Severus stood, with surprising ease for a recent mother of six. He was not yet down to his normal too thin frame, but he was well on his way, to Poppy's worry and his relief. Handing Godric off to Mimi and fastening all his shirt buttons closed, he left the the nursery, calling behind him, "Dora, Jill, come with me." The girls exchanged mystified looks, but followed readily. As did all the quads except Severin who was feeding Harry.
Like ducklings, they trailed their father through the halls, down the grand stairwell, and into the large, welcoming foyer. He opened the door just as Albus, Minerva, and Filius arrived at the front door. He nodded politely at them all and stepped aside, "Come in," he invited. He saw their eyes drift to his not-quite-flat abdomen, but ignored it. He wore only black trousers and a grey button-down shirt that did nothing to hide his unusual figure. To the professors' credit, their gazes shortly switched to the children swarming around them.
"Professors, I would like you to meet Dora," Jill smiled and waved. Severus frowned at her, and she sighed. "Don't listen to her, that one's Jill," Severus told his guests, "the other one is Dora." This time it was Dora who smiled and waved. "The boy is Sildore. Severin is upstairs. Sylvia is that one," he pointed to the appropriate quad, then his finger drifted to the one next to her. "And she's Sabrina. The twins are nearly eight and the quads almost four." He raised a brow at his guests and said a bit bitterly, "But I expect you are more curious about the ones named for you, since I've not had visitors before."
Jill tugged on his sleeve, "The Daddies and the Weasleys and the Potters and the mediwitches visit."
"Mediwitches don't count and neither do family," Severus told her, and noted that this response earned him a stunned look from Minerva and a surprised blink from Filius. The Headmaster just twinkled, which Severus counted as a good sign. Though he would never admit it, the Headmaster's absense from his life these last eight years had bothered him. Something off that would worry at him, noticible by its absense, like a dark patch on a wall where a favourite painting had once lived.
"And the Daddies don't visit anymore," Dora told her sister, "They live here now."
A sudden distance and coldness appeared in the body language of both Filius and Minerva. Albus did not change, except in that his twinkle grew a shade more wicked. "Don't you wish to show off the rest of your brood, Severus?" he suggested. "You put even Molly to shame."
Severus did his best to restrain the faint blush the not-quite-disapproving words threatened to raise. "Yes, of course, this way." Feeling uncomfortably like a muggle tourguide, he lead his five children and three guests back to the nursery, pointing out a few paintings, rooms, or histories that he thought one of his former collegues might be interested in. When they entered the nursey, decorated in the best Gryffindor style that Severus, the Weasleys, and the Potters could manage, he watched their reactions, hiding his small smile of anticipation.
He was not disappointed. Filius gaped shamelessly. Minerva quietly cursed Melin's beard. Albus . . . Albus started laughing so hard he had to sit down. Severus raised an eyebrow, as if curious about what they found so unusual. Filius mangaged to speak first, "Goodness, Severus, this not the decorating scheme I was expecting."
Severus frowned, allowing himself to play up a sudden thought that had just occured to him, "Should I have included more Ravenclaw colours? I'm sorry, Filius, with a Godric, a Minerva, a Lily, an Albus, and a Harry, I fear I got carried away with the Gryffindor theme."
Minerva stared at him, while a fresh peal of laughter erupted from Albus. Severus watched the old wizard in concern. While Dumbledore was forever annoyingly cheerful and chuckling, this was a few steps up from that and Severus worried for his heart and blood pressure. "There's going to be a Godric Snape?" Filius asked in disbelief.
Severus nodded at one of the cribs. "Godric Albus Snape is right over there," he agreed. Filius squeaked and ran over to take a look. He had to use the same stepstool the quads did to see over the bars of the crib. Minerva followed, still looking dazed. Albus recovered himself enough to stand and join the Heads of Gryffindor and Ravenclaw, still chuckling merrily. Severus firmly told himself that his mentor was not laughing at him.
"No-one has called a child Godric in over two centuries," Filius informed them of the obscure fact, "I find it ironic that when somebody finally does, he has a Slytherin for one parent."
"Both parents," Severus corrected quietly, though everyone in the room heard it well enough. Albus' chuckles abruptly dried up. Though Severus did not look up from Godric's sleeping form, he felt their three gazes like brands. "Fred and George did not father this set." When he drew in the courage to look up, only Filius looked surprised. "You knew?" he asked carefully, aiming the question at the headmaster.
"Minerva mentioned that your boys said something of the sort."
Severus nodded, that was all right then. "I don't know if you know Elijah Walters, Tambric Albright, or Zachary Goyle?"
"Walters and Albright, yes. They were inseperable. They were seventh years your first year teaching, I thought," Filius remarked.
Severus frowned, trying to remember. His first year as a teacher had been mess, and half of it had been spent in Azkaban. He had been the potions master for only four weeks when someone denounced him. Albus had got him out as quickly as he could, but it was after Christmas break before he resumed teaching. But he would have thought he'd recognize their names at least if he had ever taught them, even that first year. He shook his head, "I don't recall them."
Albus brushed his fingers through Godric's silky black hair. "This one is Zachary Goyle's?" he asked.
"Albus as well," Severus confirmed. "I'm sorry."
The headmaster smiled at him, "Whatever for, dear child?"
Unable to meet the wizard's eye, Severus watched the old hand continue to stroke baby-fine black locks. "For giving your name to a Goyle's bastard."
"Severus." Severus waited for whatever lecture was about to follow that chiding tone. "Look at me." He had followed Albus for too long not to obey his softly spoken instruction. "The boy is your child and I am honoured you would give him my name."
Severus looked away, embarrassed by graditude he didn't feel he deserved. "Sildore was subtlely named for you as well. He's at least legi-" Severus stopped as he realized what he was about to say.
Albus smiled, amused but sympathetic, "Legitimate?"
"As close as this family will get," Severus answered, lowering his eyes to look at Godric again.
In the periphery of his vision, he saw Albus' smile widen, and Minerva look surprised once more. "You could marry them, you know," Albus pointed out.
Severus shook his head, and was acutely aware of the held breath and rapt attention from his six older children. "No."
"May I ask why? For all intents and purposes, it appears you already are."
"Then why bother?" Severus snapped more harshly than he intended. The kids all flinched as if struck, and he felt guilt immediately assail him. Bending down to eye level with the quads, he met each black-eyed gaze, "Look, I don't want any of you trying mastermind any plots to get me and at Daddies together. We're already together."
"Then why aren't you married?" Dora asked, repeating Albus' unanswerable question.
"Because I used to be their teacher."
"Severus, that was twelve years ago!" Minerva exclaimed.
Severus looked up at her, and she fell silent from the indescribable look of pain and maybe sorrow on his face. "Even in bed, they still call me Professor." All three Hogwarts staff flinched.
"It's your first name," a voice from the door said. The four adults turned toward George in surprise. "Hi, sorry to bug you, but have you seen the Crackling Crunchies samples?"
"They were in the lab, last I saw them," Severus answered, running his eyes over the six children. His gaze landed on one of the eight year olds. "Where are they now, Dora?"
George flashed a grin at his daughter. "Stinks having a former Head of House for a Pop, don't it?"
"Ruddy awful," she agreed.
"Language," Severus warned, then shot a glare up in George's direction, both for teaching her the word and setting him up as the bad guy. "Do you want your samples back or don't you?"
"Then you can get her to tell you where they are." Dora flashed dimples and fled the room. Severus did not expect to see her again until dinnertime. He raised an eyebrow at George's betrayed look. "Something wrong, George?"
"You just gave her permission to keep them!"
Severus appealled to Albus, "Did I say any such thing?"
His eyes, already twinkling madly, managed the impossible and twinkled more. "Not in words." Blue, bespectacled eyes fell on George. "What did you mean earlier, about Severus's first name?"
The twin shrugged. "Oh. Professor. It's his name. 'Bout four or five years ago it started feeling wrong to call him Snape all the time. I mean, we were bedding-" he flushed bright red, and Severus closed his eyes as his own display of embarrassment. George forged on, "bedding him and everything. Fred and I talked about it, and decided using Professor wouldn't sound as rude."
"Had it never occurred to you to use Severus?" Severus asked.
The look George leveled at him clearly stated that it never had and it never would. Severus felt equal parts relief and disappointment. For all that they shared a bed, he wasn't sure he wanted them that close emotionally. He shook the mood by standing and striding over to Minerva Lily's crib. "Minerva, this is the one named for you." He checked the nursery clock and the schedule on her headboard. "It's just about time for her to eat. Up we come, wake up," he told the baby, lifting her from her crib. He realized his shirt was done up, and said, "Minerva, here, hold her for a second."
The transfiguration teacher accepted the infant, and immediately began to smile and coo at the small girl. Severus unfastened his buttons, paying little heed to the presence of others. This was his house. These were his babies. He be damned before belated modesty made one of his children go hungry. If he had worried for his modesty, he should have thought of that before inviting strangers to plant their seed in him. Albus and Filius both politely looked away as he bared his left breast and took the child back from her namesake. Minerva watched curiously as the baby began to nurse. George had left in the meantime, presumably to seek out Dora.
"Does that hurt?"
Severus shook his head, giving his youngest daughter a small, fond smile. "It's really quite soothing, actually. Even after four pregnanies, it still feels surreal." He looked at her, his eyes for once without their masks and barriers. "I'm a mother," he told her in wonder.
Before she could make a suitably serious response to this old revelation, "Does that mean we can call you Mommy?" rose from the peanut gallery.
His eyes sought out the guilty party and landed on Severin, still holding a now-asleep Harry. "No," he answer firmly, nipping all plans of doing so in the bud. Or so he hoped.
"It would make everything less confusing," Jill pointed out.
Severus leveled a cool gaze at her. "No."
"Yes it would," she argued, as Sylvia supported her with a bobbing head.
"No, you cannot call me that."
Albus' eyes twinkled as he opened his mouth to add his own two knuts. Severus sent his glare in that direction, "If you say one word to encourage them, I won't ask you to be Albus' godfather." The Headmaster's mouth closed with a snap of teeth.
Still nursing Minerva, he wandered to another crib. "Filius, this is the one named for you. Would you be his godfather?"
The tiny Head of Ravenclaw squeaked as he involuntarily looked toward the nursing man. Squeezing his eyes closed he nodded vigously as he blushed. "Honoured, Severus."
"Filius, I won't get pregnant again if you look at me." The little professor's blush deepened from pink to red. He did not open his eyes. A malicious light entered Severus's eyes. The children recognized it immediately and began to grin at each other. "Really, Filius, I don't think I could get pregnant yet if I tried. I haven't so far." Red turned to deep crimson. "I'd have to check the library or ask Hermione, but I think the Hermaphrodite spell only gives me eggs at the inception of the condition. It would explain why it didn't happen during the months I was nursing the quads." Deep crimson turn to purple, and even Minerva was red. The kids clearly weren't understanding the conversation that flew over their heads, but they knew their dad was winning.
"Really, Severus, this is hardly an appropriate discussion for a nursery," Minerva told him stiffly.
"Why the babies certainly don't understand, and the worst Jill will get out of it is that I made a pass at Filius." Filius sqeaked again and turned another shade darker. Severus sighed under Minerva's disapproving look. "You all know I didn't mean it. He's not exactly my type."
"I would not have thought the Weasley twins or Goyle were either," Minerva snipped.
Severus flinched, and looked away.
"I'm sorry, Severus, that was uncalled for."
"No," he whispered, then tried again at normal volume, "No, you're quite right. Given enough persistance, I'd probably take any-" He bit back his tongue, and closed his eyes, unable to meet any of their eyes. He really shouldn't talk while nursing. It was worse than veritaserum.
The stilted silence was broken by Albus. "So this one is my godson?" Severus opened his eyes to see Albus standing over Albus's crib.
When Minerva Lily finished her meal, they retired to the sitting room for tea and cauldron cakes, and the conversation remained carefully neutral. All three professors accepted their invitations to be godparents for the child named for them, and Severus added that Harry was Harry's godfather as well. Charlie had taken Godric, and Ginny Lily. When asked why each child didn't have both a godmother and a godfather, Severus had just stared at Minerva for a moment, then asked, "And where do you expect me to find all these godparents? The other eight didn't have any at all, which is why I still have a pool to draw from."
They stood to leave when Minerva and Filius had to take their shifts supervising Hogsmeade weekend. As he walked them to the door, Severus invited them, "You know you are welcome for Christmas. The Manor is larger than the Burrow, so we've taken to hosting the holiday."
With indistinct promises of 'seeing how many students stay', the three were gone. He closed his eyes and breathed, telling himself that it could have gone worse. For example, he could have actually taken Filius to his bed. Or they could have refused to be godparents. Or - his eyes snapped open as the wards rang once more. Had they forgotten something?
Opening the door again, he looked for Albus's blue conical hat and snow white hair and beard. But what he saw was something entirely different. A couple, both dressed in black robes strode down his walk. The man was very tall, and wide about the shoulders. The woman was about a head shorter, which still put her in the topmost third of the female population. As they got within shouting range, he recognized Zachary Goyle, the brute whose attentions he had most enjoyed the most that shameful afternoon.
Fear and dread began prickle in his stomach.
As they reach the stoop, he nodded politely, "Mr and Mrs Goyle, I pressume?" Despite the three years since their last meeting, Zachary looked younger than he remembered. Possibly younger than the Weasley twins.
"Mr. Snape," they returned, inclining their heads to confirm their own identities.
"Why are you here?" Ettiquette called for him to invite them inside now, but he considered them enemies, and there was no way he was going to let them enter his home, where his children were, without a damn good reason.
Dora spied down on the new visitors from her hiding place under the eaves of the front porch. Daddy didn't like these people, that she could tell from the way he stood even before he spoke. So she stayed quiet, hoping Daddy wouldn't know she was there, because she was sure he'd send her away if he did. And then she'd never find out who these strangers were, and she couldn't have that.
Willing herself to silence and invisibility, she leaned forward to get a better look at the pair. The man was tall, taller even than Daddy. The woman was also tall, closer to Daddy's height than the Daddies were. Both were dark haired, though neither was as black as Daddy.
"We've come for our son," the woman said. Dora frowned and narrowed her eyes, taking an immediate dislike to the lady. And what did she mean, their son? There weren't any kids here but the Snapes, herself, and Jill. Were they neighbors who lost their kid? But why would they think he came here?
"Unless my reasearch was incomplete," Daddy said coldly, in a tone that implied that the possibility was impossible, "then you haven't a son."
Not neighbors then. Wait. Hadn't Daddy called them Mr. and Mrs. Goyle? That sounded familiar. And there were three people in particaliar that Daddy had 'researched' recently. The bad men. This was one of the bad men. Harry and Filius were Mr. Albright's. That she knew beyond doubt because it was Elizabeth and Christopher Albright she and her sister had to talk to. Lily and Minerva were from the bad man whose other son went to Hogwarts. Which meant these people wanted Godric and Albus. Her brother and Jill's. She bit her lip and held her breath, not daring to miss a word.
"Your owl the other day said otherwise," the woman countered, equally cold.
"As I recall, my owl absolved your husband of all responsibility toward my twins."
"As your letter said, you bore my husband's firstborn son. We have rights to him."
'Him'? Not 'them'? They only wanted one? Dora tried to imagine life without Jill and couldn't do it. Until now, she hadn't really understood why Daddy called the men who gave him the new babies 'bad', but if they wanted to seperate Albus and Godric, that certainly qualified. The woman, Dora thought, was just as awful.
"You have none. They are bastard-born," Daddy said harshly. Dora recoiled a bit at the venom in her father's words. She'd never heard him talk about the new babies like that before. From the day he'd announced their peculiar parentage, he'd insisted that the sextuplets were to be treated as if they were full-siblings.
"Who do you think a Ministry judge will favour, Snape? A young barren couple or you, with a Death Eater past, and how many is it? Ten bastards? What's one less?"
Dora scowled down at the woman. Her daddy was not a Death Eater! And only six of her siblings were bastards.
"Fourteen," Daddy said, in his quiet you're-in-trouble-now voice. "I will see you dead before you take even one of them from me."
Wait, wait, wait. Back up. Was Daddy implying they were all bastards? Even her and Jill? That wasn't right. Her daddies were the good ones.
"A death threat," the woman laughed. "From a Weasley brood mother? Who would take care of your, my mistake, fourteen bastards when you went to Azkaban?"
Daddy sneered, "You are assuming I would be found out. I am far better than that." Dora felt a small trickle of sweat on her back. Daddy wasn't a Death Eater . . . was he? "Not all murders are flashy, Amanda. Some are mistaken for natural causes." Daddy's voice was low and silky and very scary. He wasn't acting like Daddy at all. Goose pimples sprouted all over the spying eight-year old.
The woman seemed rather taken aback by Daddy's words, but then she recovered and sneered right back. "If I turn up dead or missing right after I make a court appeal to take my son from your questionable care, I think there would be an investigation."
Daddy raised his eyebrows and made an uncaring gesture. "Certainly. But is it worth your death to test my skills? I am confident of them. It would be a shame to leave Gregory alone to carry on the Goyle name."
Daddy snorted in amused derision. "Is not infallible. Shall you die so I can prove that to your ghost? Albus and Godric are mine. I would suggest you remember that, so we can all live long and healthy lives. There are potions for infertility, if you really wish for a child that badly. I can mix you up a batch tonight and owl it to you by tomorrow."
The woman looked like he had suggest she drink bat dung. Which, Dora supposed, Daddy might have. Dora wasn't really sure which ingredients went into fertility potions. She and Jill had sworn off peppercup potion once they learned how it was made. Well, they did until Sabastian called them sissy Hufflepuff girls without any taste for adventure. Apparently, Sabastian thought adventure tasted awful and was made with dragon toenails.
"He wouldn't be first-born."
Idiot woman, Dora thought at the lady, Daddy's not giving you Albus. She had thought that was made eminently clear. "What ruddy difference does that make?" Dora demanded, irritated. The three adults looked up at her in surprise. Gaped, really. She leaned forward, resting her elbows on the beam she sat upon and let her legs straddle the wood. "First born, second born, third, fourteenth, it doesn't matter. Albus isn't first born. He's ninth born. Even if birth order mattered, I'd think first born by one parent and second born by the other would outrank ninth and first. Unless," Dora narrowed her dark eyes at the bad lady in doubt, "yoou are one of those old fashioned fools who think girls aren't as good as boys? Plus, don't you society folks make a big deal about parents being married? 'Course, I wouldn't know. I'm just a Weasley." Dora rolled her eyes, to show what she thought about people who dismissed her for that reason.
"Dora, what are you doing?"
"Well, I was hiding from daddies George, but then he left and I was about to get down when you came out with the Hogwarts Professors, so since then I was, um, eavesdropping." She looked around at her location in the eaves and appreciated the irony. "If I drop will you catch me, Daddy?" she asked, smiling sweetly and desperately hoping he wouldn't ground her. His frown told her she would need to quickly move on to plan B. "I promise I won't tell anyone what you said, Daddy."
Oh, big mistake. "Twenty points from Noel." She winced and made a face. "To your room, and where are the Crackling Crunchies?"
There was a time for arging and a time for tactical retreat. Now was definitely the latter. "The library, under the cushion on the green armchair."
"Drop," he ordered. She did so immediately, barely waiting for him to move into a position to catch her. "Now go inside, and I trust you will keep that promise." She nodded quickly. "I'll be in to talk to you in a few minutes."
"Okay, Daddy," she agreed, but had to get in a parting shot to the lady who wanted to take Albus away from Jill. "And you better leave Albus alone because Daddy doesn't lie. If he says he'll kill you, he means it."
"That's enough, Dora."
"And if he says he can get away with it, he can. He knows everything about potions, and he tricked Santa once."
"That's enough, Dora."
"And he -" she was cut off as Daddy pushed her through the front door and closed it in her face. She blinked at the darkly stained wood a few times, then went up to her room when it became obvious that she wouldn't hear anything through the thick door and whatever wards and spells Daddy had put on it.
Jill was already there, writing an essay on a book they'd read for class recently. She barely looked up as Dora entered and plopped onto her bed. "Sylvia said your House just dropped twenty points. If that was your fault, thank you. Ellis is almost even now."
Dora sighed. "You might want to be scarse when Daddy comes in to 'talk to me'. I got caught eavesdropping." She giggled at her own pun, then sobered. "One of the bad men came. His wife and him want to take Albus away." Her promise didn't cover what the Goyles said, and this concerned Jill most of all. Albus was hers.
Jill, being a smart girl, decided she really couldn't continue with her essay without checking another book in the library. Whether or not that's where she was actually going was anybody's guess.
Daddy arrived sometime later, carrying a nursing baby, and took a seat at the foot of Jill's bed. "Dora," he said seriously, "I am sorely tempted to obliviate you."
Her eyes widened and her jaw dropped in her astonishment. Surely, what she'd heard wasn't that bad.
"I won't, however, because I've seen what happens all too often when children get memory charms placed on them." Dora relaxed in relief, slumping into her pillow. "In leiu of that, we do need to have a talk." The emphasis he placed on that last word filled her with dread all over again.
"I won't tell anybody, not a word, cross my heart and hope to die." She added the appropriate hand gestures to seal the vow.
"Not even Jill."
That was harsh. But she nodded. "Not even Jill," she promised.
Daddy nodded curtly. "Now we will discuss what you won't be telling anybody." He cast silencing and anti-eavesdropping charms at the doors and windows, then looked back at her. "Have you any questions before we begin?"
Dora nodded. "Were you a Death Eater, Daddy?" He hadn't denied it when Mrs. Goyle brought it up.
Daddy looked down at the baby at his breast, and ran long fingers over the silky fine hair. "Yes," he whispered. Dora bit her lip, and searched Daddy's face for signs of a lie or trick. Her declaration of her father's honesty to Mrs. Goyle had been more to unsettle the lady than because she believed it. But there was no hint of dupilicity on his face now. There was little hint of anything on his face now. The only sound in the room was of the baby suckling.
Okay. Her daddy was a Death Eater then. After this afternoon's eavesdropping session that didn't surprise her as much as it would have yesterday. "Oh." She frowned at him, like she would at a passage in her science book that didn't make sense. "But you're not a bad guy."
He gave away a small laugh. "Dora, you witnessed me make a threat on two people's lives today, and you still believe that?"
She nodded. "Of course, Daddy. You were just protecting Albus. It would be badder to let those mean old," she scrunched up her face looking for an insult vile enough for them, fell short, and settled for one of Daddy's favorites, "dunderheads to take Albus away from us and Godric and Jill. Lots of mommies do stuff worse than that to save their kids. I mean, when you talk about dangerous animals, you always say 'the mama dragon' or 'the mama bear' or something. Because mamas have more motive and would risk more than just an angry one," she explained logically. "And you're still mommy-shaped. Besides, the bad lady deserved it." She jerked her head in a conclusive nod.
Daddy did start chuckling for real this time. "Dora, I fear for your chances to get into Gryffindor."
Dora shrugged, "Gramma and Uncle Ron and Uncle Percy will be more upset than the Daddies, I think. I just hope Jill gets in the same House." she frowned suddenly as another question, far more important than whether or not daddy used to be a Death Eater occurred to her. "Are they going to try to take Albus away?"
He smiled reassuringly at her. "No, I made a - what I thought was a facetious comment - but Mrs. Goyle latched onto it, and I assume will carry through on my suggestion."
"What did you say?"
"I was building on your first and second born out ranks a fourteenth and first remark. I said that if it really bothers them that their son would not be his father's firstborn, they could cast hermaphodito on each other and she could be the boy's father. The look on Zachary's face was priceless."