The world of Harry Potter is the property of JK Rowling, Bloomsbury, Scholastic, WB, and other entities NOT ME. I make no profit off this story! It's just for enjoyment and I hope you enjoy.
This story is in response to the TPMM birthday challenge, in celebration of JK Rowling announcing 9th January as Snape's birthday. It takes place during Order of the Phoenix, two days before Snape has to tell Harry he's going to teach him Occlumency. Allusions are made to my stories "I Have Many Skills" and "The Joys of Magical Mistletoe." This story should be seen as part of my Snape/Tonks series. Sorry, there are no lemons in this story, as it could only be written in an hour. However, I may opt to write a lemon after the competition is over.
Without further adieu...
Snape sat at the edge of his bed and ran his fingers through his hair. It was a good thing term hadn’t started yet, for he could not be bothered with people today. He awoke with a headache, and a general feeling of dread. Never mind Potter. Never mind the Dark Lord. Never mind the potions prep work he had to do. Today was the 9th of January. Today was his birthday.
He stood up and scratched his bum, then slumped over to the toilet for a quick pee. Gazing into the mirror, he debated whether to even get dressed today.
'A fried breakfast, delivered by a house elf, some tea and ‘Potions Monthly’ I should think,' he agreed with his reflection.
He scratched his scrotum and put on his dressing gown and shuffled over to the floo to summon a house elf when he saw Dumbledore poke his head into the floo.
'Severus,' he summoned. 'Would you come here please?'
'Yes, headmaster, he sighed with a degree of resignation.
'I require your presence,' he said seriously. 'Do make your way to 12 Grimmauld Place by noon. We have an urgent matter discuss.' He paused, then continued, 'Oh, and happy birthday.'
Being summoned on his birthday was bad enough. But being summoned to 12 Grimmauld Place on his birthday was somewhat akin to punishment. Also, something about the way Dumbledore wished him a happy birthday annoyed Snape down to his aching knees.
'Very well, headmaster,' he replied.
Several minutes later, Severus was fully dressed and rushing to finish the fried breakfast he’d hoped earlier to enjoy at leisure. Quickly swallowing the last of his tea, he gazed at the timepiece on his dresser and considered the most optimal mode of transport. Feeling more than a bit lazy, and resentful of the request, he opted to floo to the Leaky Cauldron, then apparate from there. This passive-aggressive maneouver allowed him to feign expediency whilst knowing full well that the Leaky Cauldron public floo was as busy as Victoria Station during rush hour. If he was late, so be it.
Unfortunately for Severus, the Leaky Cauldron was uncharacteristically absent of travellers. He was able to go through right away. Arriving At 12 Grimmauld Place early, he sneered at the door and went in.
He was greeted by Molly Weasley, who informed him that Harry Potter and company were off doing something of great fun for Gryffindor minors. 'Thank merlin for small favours,' he thought, as she directed him to the kitchen below, where some others were already waiting. Molly busied herself taking down the faery lights that were meant to be removed on 12th night.
Snape entered the kitchens and found himself in company of a very small group: Minerva, Tonks, Lupin, and Dumbledore.
'Severus, thank you for coming,' Dumbledore smiled.
Annoyed with being thanked for something he was more or less ordered to do, he curled his lips slightly and sat down at the table.
'We have been discussing Harry’s visions, and his seeming connexion with Lord Voldemort,' he explained. 'And I have decided it is in Harry’s best interest that he be taught Occlumency. I do not think it is wise for me to teach him, owing to the power Lord Voldemort seems to have in penetrating the boy’s mind and manipulating him from a distance. Therefore, I think you are the best candidate for the job.'
Snape’s colour turned a deep brick red. It was bad enough to be forced out of bed on his birthday. But to be summoned to THIS HOUSE and instructed to privately tutor Harry Potter. . .
An ugly scene ensued, in which Snape used every Slytherin tactic at his disposal to change Dumbledore’s mind without being directly insubordinate.
In return, there were stern looks by Minerva. There was coaxing and ego stroking by Lupin and Tonks. 'You’re really the best at it,' he tried. 'You did such a magnificent job teaching me,' Tonks chimed in. 'I shall lend you my pensieve,' Dumbledore tired to reassure.
But resistance was useless. Snape eventually conceded that this was the best plan all round. With narrowed eyes and a cold voice he asked, ‘Will that be all, headmaster?’
‘Er, no,’ Dumbledore smiled back. He cracked open the door and summoned Molly Weasley.
In came Molly, carrying a glorious birthday cake of dark chocolate with chocolate icing, and a great smile on her face.
'HAPPY BIRTHDAY!' she sang out, and placed the cake in front of him.
Severus scowled and gritted his teeth. 'I prefer to celebrate in private,' he said, almost like a warning. But the group would have none of it.
Moments later Sirius Black came sauntering in, recently awake and apparently unaware of what was happening. Looking over at the cake, then at Snape, he turned eight shades of purple and demanded to know why no one had informed him earlier.
'I was not aware that wishing an Order member a happy birthday after an impromptu meeting required your approval,' Dumbledore responded warningly.
Noticing Sirius’ extreme discomfort, Snape smiled a hideous smile, picked up the serving knife and drawled, 'If I must…' Slowly, he sliced into the cake while his eyes lingered on Sirius.
In an attempt to break the tension, Molly set out plates and summoned her kettle and filled their cups with tea. Sirius stormed out of the kitchen, muttered something about slimy gits ruining breakfast and slammed the door behind him. Satisfied with Sirius’ reaction, Snape pulled out his wand and charmed the serving knife to give slices to everyone at the table.
The small group sat and amiably chatted for a few minutes. Tonks noticed that Snape wasn’t touching his cake. She walked over and sat down next to him. 'Hey, Snapes. I didn’t know today was your birthday until Dumbledore told me,' she smiled flirtatiously. 'I thought for sure you were a Scorpio, not a Capricorn. Especially after, well, you know.'
'Of course I’m a Capricorn,' he responded coolly. 'Was there any doubt?'
Tonks smiled again, reached for her fork and spilled her tea. She pulled out her wand to clean it up and observed the others all engaged in conversation. Through the corner of her eye she noticed Snape take a bite of his cake when he thought no one was looking.
Giggling to herself, she turned back to him and whispered in his ear. 'Surely there are other ways you’d rather be spending your birthday...in private,' she suggested. She ran a single finger up his inner thigh, under the table.
'Truer words were never said,' his deep voice vibrated in her ear, though his face betrayed nothing to the rest of the room.
'Well, I am supposed to be on auror duty, investigating a suspicious delivery of Daily Prophets to a muggle newsagent,' she grinned. 'Did I fail to mention that newsagent happens to be round the corner from my flat? And that the newsagent is run by a squib?'
Severus felt a twitch in his crotch as he considered her offer. The day was certainly winding up better than it had started, even if the prospect of tutoring Potter lay on the horizon.
Making their excuses, Snape and Tonks managed to find a way to leave the gathering without giving away their intentions—or so they thought. . .
‘As if we didn’t know,’ Lupin shook his head. ‘Molly only just took down the magical mistletoe today,’ he laughed when the two were out of earshot.
‘And pink hair seems to stick to black winter robes worse than cat hair,’ Dumbledore chuckled in return.
‘Happy birthday, Severus,’ they chimed in amused conspiratorial unison.