Written for the Kinda Lush 2006 Challenge, with the prompt "Recipe."|
Note for the Australians: the story takes place in Severus's seventh year...in late January. In other words, he just turned 18.
Many thanks to Femme for the beta.
Anything But Temptation
"You really should try some of this Turkish Delight. Young Douglas - you remember the Gresham boy, don't you? - sent a box just this morning."
Minerva gave Horace a small smile, but shook her head.
"Oh come now, Minnie," said Horace, leaning back in the wingback chair by the fireplace and licking the powdered sugar off his fingers, one after another. "Nothing wrong with a bit of indulgence now and again."
"No indeed, Horace," Minerva said, snapping her fingers and summoning a small plate of shortbread. "However, my idea of indulgence is a wee bit different from yours, I believe."
"Perhaps you're right." Horace lifted another of the delicacies to his lips - a rose-coloured one this time - and closed his eyes. "Lovely. Did I ever tell you about the first time I tasted Turkish Delight? It was during the war with Grindelwald - late December, as I recall - and my...."
Before Horace could share the sweet memory, the door to the staff room flew open. Lily Evans, one of the Gryffindor prefects, peered around the corner of the door.
Minerva leaned forward in her chair. "Miss Evans?"
"Pardon me, Professor McGonagall, but I was actually looking for Professor Slughorn."
"Lily, my dear," Horace said warmly. "What can I do for you?"
The girl took a deep breath and stepped into the room. As soon as she came fully into view, he could see that Miss Evans was not alone.
"It's not me, precisely, who needs the assistance, except...well, except with the obvious."
Standing directly behind Miss Evans was Severus Snape. His eyes were closed, his mouth was agape, and he was currently engaged in sliding his hands over Miss Evans' breasts. From what Horace could see of the young man, Severus's normally sallow complexion was covered in red blotches, which Horace could only imagine was a quite understandable display of mortification.
"Oh dear," Horace said unconvincingly, swallowing an altogether inappropriate chuckle. "You appear to have acquired an admirer, Lily."
She rolled her eyes - a bit disrespectfully, to be sure, but he would forgive a little spirit from a young woman with Lily's combination of charm and cleverness - then nodded, all the while attempting (rather more gently than Horace suspected most of the girls at Hogwarts would have done) to tug young Snape's hands away from her breasts.
"I suppose you could say that, Sir."
"Full of yourself, aren't you?" Snape muttered under his breath, but Horace noticed with interest that he showed no sign of stopping his exploration.
"Mr Snape," Minerva said, flashing Horace a quick glance that said she was well aware that he was too caught up in his own amusement to take charge of the situation. "Unhand Miss Evans at once, and be prepared to offer an explanation."
"I can't, Ma'am," Severus said, all the while nuzzling the side of Miss Evans' cheek.
Minerva frowned. "You refuse to offer an explanation for this entirely unacceptable behaviour?"
"No, Professor McGonagall. I can tell you why I'm...well...doing what I'm doing. I just don't think I can stop doing what I'm doing, if you see the difference."
Horace leaned forward in his chair - or as far as his stomach would allow - growing intrigued, despite himself.
"Are you under a spell, Severus?" Horace asked. "What do you think, Lily, my dear? Is our Severus under a spell?"
Minerva drew her wand out and said "Finite Incantatum," but Lily was already shaking her head.
"No, Sir," she said. "It's a potion. And in case you were going to ask, the boys had nothing to do with it, this time. Severus took it himself."
"Was it something from one of Professor Slughorn's classes, Miss Evans?"
Oh, and didn't Minerva sound smug as she asked that, Horace thought. Just because they weren't having to deal with a student who'd transfigured his ears into bricks for once. Another few minutes, and she'd probably invent an excuse to leave the room so that she could carry the tale to Albus.
"No ma'am," said Lily, flushing a bit as Severus started kissing each of her long, slim fingers. "Professor Slughorn always warns us about the dangers of aphrodisiacs, and...."
"...it's not a bloody aphrodisiac," Severus said angrily, glaring up at her through his perpetually unwashed hair before returning to his task.
"No?" Lily snapped. "Then why did I have to rescue you when you tried to snog Sirius? Don't tell me you fancy him."
"Of course I don't, you silly cow," Severus said. "And you didn't...."
"That is more than enough," said Minerva. "You may be finding it impossible to control your actions, Mr Snape, but the same does not hold true for your tongue. Fifty points from Slytherin for language."
She approached the boy and peeled his hands off Lily's arms. "All right now, there'll be no more of...Mr Snape, just what is it you think you're doing!"
It took all of Horace's self-control to keep from sniggering like a schoolboy at the sight before him. Severus had, indeed, relinquished his hold on Lily, but he now seemed to have switched his attentions to Minerva.
It was impossible to say which of them looked more appalled, but Minerva was already reaching for her wand, and Horace suspected that if he didn't sort things out in the next few moments, it was quite likely he'd have to do without the services of his most-talented classroom assistant tomorrow morning.
When Minerva cast a Petrificus Totalus on somebody, they stayed petrified.
"Now, now, Severus," Horace said, grasping both of Severus's skinny wrists firmly in one hand and pulling the young man away from the two witches. "I think you and I ought to go upstairs to the Seventh Year's potions lab and see what we can do about reversing this unfortunate condition you've got yourself into."
"Yes, Sir," Severus murmured, then leaned his head to the left and wiped the side of his mouth against the shoulder of his robes, trying to remove the drool that had dried there. Really, Severus was so utterly graceless. With any luck, the boy would secure a research position and be settled in a dungeon someplace where he wouldn't have to interact with other people.
It wasn't much of a distance to the NEWT's laboratory - only one flight up and at the end of the second corridor - but the journey took twice as long as it should, because almost every time they passed another student, Severus veered away and attempted to touch them. It was all Horace could do to keep Severus on track without having to resort to hexing the boy or putting a dog lead on him; never before had Horace so wished that it was possible to Apparate within the confines of the castle.
Finally, however, they arrived, and Horace locked the door behind them.
"All right, Severus," he said, opening the cabinet and removing a small silver-lined cauldron. "Now you just keep your hands to yourself while I gather the ingredients to counteract whatever aphrodisiac you made. Cupiditis, was it?"
"I wasn't lying downstairs, Professor," Severus said indignantly. "It wasn't an aphrodisiac that I brewed."
Horace turned around and frowned. "Then what was it? What is it you...Severus Snape, what do you think you're doing, young man?"
"I'm sorry, Sir," Severus said, his voice sounding as hoarse as if he were on the verge of tears. "You said to keep my hands to myself, and...I am trying."
Horace could tell that was the case. Severus was clearly trying to remove his hands from his robes, but it appeared as if the allure of the activity in which they were currently engaged (i.e., fondling his nether regions) was too powerful.
"So I see," Horace said, pushing surreptitiously against the edge of the table as he waged his own private war against the sudden tightness in his trousers. "Perhaps if I put a limited binding spell on your hands?"
Severus, looking more miserable than he usually looked, nodded, and Horace cast the spell. "Now, if the potion wasn't an aphrodisiac, what was it?"
"It was...well, NEWT's are coming up in just a few months."
"Yes," said Horace, "although, as I recall, this particular pursuit doesn't appear anywhere on your timetable."
"No, Sir," said Severus, scowling a bit, but no longer looking as if we was going to cry. "But I'm going to be taking nine NEWTs, and I've been a bit distracted from my studies recently."
Horace nodded. He knew only too well how persuasive Tom Riddle could be, and it made sense that he had already found a way to make contact with the most promising potions maker in Hogwarts.
He took a deep breath, then let it out slowly before speaking.
"I...I hope you know I'm always available to talk about, well...these sorts of things."
Severus's eyes widened. "But...you said...sir, I distinctly remember you telling us when we were Fourth Years to talk to Pomfrey if we had to talk about sex, and, well...I didn't need to, not then, but now, well, I just can't talk to her, but if you really...all of a sudden, I'm thinking about sex all the time, or at least parts of me are, if you know what I mean, and...."
Severus continued to talk, and Horace didn't know whether to be relieved that Riddle hadn't seemed to have approached the unaffiliated Seventh Years yet or horrified that Severus Snape, who generally seemed disinclined to say anything unrelated to his work in class, suddenly expected some kind of sex counseling from him.
"Yes, yes. And so because you couldn't concentrate on your revision...."
"I adapted the recipe for the Focusing potion to include a compulsion charm as one of its components."
"Did you indeed?" Horace shook his head. Young Severus was really quite spectacularly talented. He couldn't think of another student who would be able to combine charms and potions in such a way. "And how did you adapt the charm to adhere to your desire to revise?"
Severus swallowed hard and stopped wriggling in his chair for a moment. "Was that...necessary?"
"Of course it was. Without that alteration, you'd be setting the compulsion to whatever happened to be your primary focus at the time you took the potion, which was...."
Horace didn't need to even say the word 'sex.' The ashen look on the boy's face told him that Severus realized what he'd done.
"Oh bloody hell," Severus muttered.
"While I might have chosen a different set of words, I wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment," Horace said, lighting the flame beneath the small cauldron. "Hormones. They're wasted on the young. Luckily, there is a very simple brew that strips non-potion additives from any potion ingested in the past 72 hours."
"Why haven't we done this in class?" Severus asked, coming around the table and standing beside Horace to get a better look at the technique he was using to put this particular potion together.
"This counter-agent isn't part of the curriculum," said Horace, adding three lacewings to the mixture, "because up until now, there was no need for it to be. Could any of your classmates combine a charm with a potion, let alone adapt an already existing recipe in this way?"
"Of course not," Severus said with a sneer. Amazing, thought Horace as he sprinkled the simmering brew with grated dragon fewmets, how arrogant the boy could sound even as he was pressing his legs together in a desperate attempt to find some sort of sexual release.
"And now," Horace said, "We let it simmer for ten minutes and...Severus!'
"It's not...oh, god. Sorry, sir!" Severus, his voice sounding strangely ragged and desperate, had slipped behind Horace and was rubbing frantically against Horace's backside, pressing against him so heavily that Horace couldn't move enough to the left to reach his wand. ""I'm very sorry. Truly I...oh fucking hell...sorry, oh...please don't expel me, sir!"
Good lord, but Severus had a fine sense of...rhythm. If only just another few months had passed. Once Severus left school, perhaps they could...oh lord, what was he thinking? He had to say something immediately.
"You, er...you should stop this."
Could he have sounded any less like he meant what he was saying if he'd tried? If only it hadn't been so very long since Horace had--
"I know! I know, I know, I know...." Over and over, Severus said the same two words, thrusting his hips forward each time. "I just...oh, I can't, Professor. I can't, I can't, oh...oh, yes, yes...oh, oh, ohhhhh!"
Finally, panting heavily, Severus came to a complete stop and dropped his forehead on Horace's shoulder. Horace could feel the warmth of Severus's ejaculate seep through the back of his trousers.
"I'm...in trouble, aren't I?" Severus said quietly, then stepped back, allowing Horace to reach his wand.
Horace released the binding spell on Severus's hands, then took a look at the still-bubbling cauldron.
"The counter-agent is ready," Horace said.
Severus nodded and carefully decanted the liquid into six small vials.
"It's...I think the potion I made has worn off on its own, Professor."
"Yes, well...best to be on the safe side."
Again, Severus nodded, then swallowed a single dose of the potion Horace brewed.
"Am I expelled?"
Horace took a long look at the tense, frightened...and extremely talented young man who stood before him and shook his head. "No, I don't think that's necessary."
Severus frowned. "Detention, then? House points?"
"Actually, I feel that taking points in these circumstances isn't exactly appropriate."
"No?" Severus said, frowning even harder. "But surely...surely you're not just going to forget about it, are you?"
Horace shook his head. "No, Severus. I shouldn't think I'll be forgetting about it any time soon." He waited, but not for long - Severus was a clever lad, after all.
He could see the very moment that understanding dawned.
"Perhaps...I could assist you in some way?" Severus said blandly, reaching out and lightly caressing Horace's belly with his knuckles.
Horace inclined his head and smiled.
"Oh, why don't we just think of it as both of us assisting each other."
Note: The title is taken from the following quotation: "I can resist anything but temptation." (From Oscar Wilde's play, Lady Windermere's Fan)