Written for Josan for merry_smutmas 2006.

Many thanks to Femme and Kai for beta'ing!

by Beth H
(c) December 2006


"What did he say? Is he willing to allow you to work in the wizarding world if...."

"He said," Severus spat, "that his hands were tied."

"Oh, bloody hell," Kingsley said, shaking his head unhappily. "I am sorry, Severus. Anyone with half a brain - even Scrimgeour - has to know that the law was never intended to apply to you, and...."

"You're sorry? You're sorry?" Severus could feel the vein in his temple start to pulse. "For what? For leading me to believe that things might have changed at the Ministry? No, it's I who should be sorry...sorry that after all this time, I'm apparently still enough of a damned fool to harbour some hope that...."

"Severus." Kingsley's broad, long-fingered hand was warm as it came to rest on Severus' shoulder. "It won't always be like this."

"If you truly believe that," Severus snarled, pulling away from Kingsley, "then you're a bigger fool than I."


The knife in Severus' hand was one which he had brought from home and which served as a reminder of a time when he had been surrounded only by instruments of the finest craftsmanship. The knife felt heavy in his palm, perfectly balanced, nothing like the sub-standard, stainless steel monstrosities with which he was forced to work whenever his current...master's eyes were upon him. Its blade was so sharp that if Severus had been called upon to do so, he could have made the slices he was cutting so thin that they would have been transparent.

He was not called upon to do so, however.

"Oi, Snape!" shouted the lead bartender over the din of the Saturday night crowd. "How many times do I have to tell you the punters want wedges in their gin and tonics, not slices?"

Severus stiffened, but kept silent for once (he could ill afford to lose another job), then reached for another lime from the plastic bucket under the bar and began to cut it into...wedges.

What bloody difference it made whether there was a slice of lime or a wedge of lime in the drinks was beyond his comprehension. This wasn't potions making, after all, where the slightest variation between two ingredients might mean the difference between a beard-removing potion and a potion capable of eating the flesh off a man's face more quickly than acid. This was nothing more than a slightly disreputable Muggle bar in a neighbourhood which bore more than a passing resemblance to Knockturn Alley, patronized in the main by large, leather-clad men and occasionally by the odd stranger who'd somehow got it into his head (rightly so, as it happened) that this was the place to come for 'a bit of rough.'

It was the strangers, generally, who ordered the gin and tonics.

"That's better," the bartender said, slapping Severus on the shoulder so hard that he almost knocked the bowl of lime wedges onto the floor. Severus itched to take out his wand and cast a spell that would meld the man's fingers together, but once again, his instinct for self-preservation came to the surface and he reined in his temper.

"Listen, Snape...I've got plans tonight, and the boss told Ian and Dave that they could leave early, so it looks like you're going to have to close up the place. You think you can handle that?"

For the third time in barely as many minutes, Severus refrained from hexing the idiot with whom he was forced to work.

"Of course I can," Severus gritted out between clenched teeth.

"All right, then. The check list is tacked to the wall next to the keys, and don't forget to muck out the back rooms. If the guv opens up tomorrow morning and sees johnnies stuck to the floor, well, I don't like your chances of keeping your job, is all."


Two hours later, Severus wasn't certain that holding onto this particular job was worth the vile task that he'd been asked to do. Even being able to use magic to clean didn't quite make up for the fact that the stench from the first room was now probably lodged permanently in his memory, quite beyond the power of even the most powerful Obliviation charm.

The second room wasn't quite so bad as the first. The threadbare carpet was stained and worn from years of rough usage, but in the dim light, Severus could see no dubious-looking items on the floor, just what looked like a pile of dirty, ragged blankets pushed into one corner of the room. He aimed his wand, cast a quick cleaning spell, and --

-- a noise emanated from the pile of blankets that sounded very like a moan.

Severus frowned, then cautiously, still holding his wand in his right hand, cast Wingardium Leviosa. The ragged, grey blanket at the top of the pile rose a few inches, and Severus cast another spell to send it to the far side of the room. Beneath, lay something quite different from the filthy, flea-infested pile of cloth he had, at first, assumed he'd find lying underneath.

Instead, what lay there was some rather nondescript items of clothing and a man.

A naked man, to be precise, lying on his side in a fetal position, his ankles bound with a pair of leather leg cuffs, and his arms tied behind his back with a long leather thong, its frayed ends wrapped loosely around the man's bollocks.

The man was wearing a ring gag, and his eyes were covered with a leather blindfold, but his hair - surprisingly long for a Muggle - had been left unbound, and it fell in a sweaty tangle of red and brown and grey about his shoulders.

Unsurprisingly, Severus could see tension in the other man's shoulders and an almost undetectable tremor that spoke of fear, but unless he was very much mistaken, Severus could also read just the slightest hint of arousal beneath the tension and the fear. How extremely interesting, Severus thought, as he moved silently toward the bound man. It was, of course, Severus' responsibility to unbind the abandoned customer and send him safely on his way, but there was nothing in his conditions of employment that required him to unbind the man particularly quickly, especially not if the stranger turned out to be the kind of man who would appreciate a bit of a...delay.

Severus leaned down and reached his left hand behind the man's head to undo the buckle of the gag, but before he could unfasten it, the man moaned and rubbed his cheek against the inside of Severus' wrist. So he did want to play for a bit, Severus thought, insinuating one long, thin finger through the opening of the gag and into the man's mouth. The man moaned again and Severus' eyebrows rose slightly as the man curled his tongue around Severus' fingertip.

Sliding his finger out of the man's mouth, Severus unfastened the buckle with his other hand and removed the gag. Ever so slowly, the man closed his mouth, grimacing as he did. Severus had no way of knowing how long the man had been tied up in this room, but he was certain it had been more than enough time leave quite an ache in his jaw. Without asking himself why he was bothering, Severus pressed his thumbs into the tender spots by the man's earlobes until he sensed a release of tension. The man shifted his jaw from side to side a few times, then smiled.

"I was wondering if Victor might still...but, no, you can't be Victor. I can't imagine him ever doing anything like that. Has anybody ever told you that you have marvelous hands?"

Unseen, Severus glanced down at his hands briefly, then...he frowned.

That voice.

It was raspy from the hours the man had spent wearing the gag, but Severus knew he'd heard it before, and not just at some point during the evening from his spot behind the bar.

"I'll need to be getting back home, but perhaps if you give me your felly...telephone number, we could arrange to meet another time. Of course," the man said, with a laugh, "you'll have to untie my hands first."

Instinctively, Severus' grip tightened on his wand. It was all he could do to keep from casting the Cruciatus right then and there.

Rufus Bloody Scrimgeour.

'My hands are tied, Snape,' Scrimgeour had said, less than a fortnight ago. If only Severus had known just how accurate those words had been, their meeting might have ended in quite a different fashion.

He swallowed the bile that had risen in his throat and returned the wand to his pocket.

"Perhaps...you needn't go so soon," Severus said silkily.

Scrimgeour turned his head as far as his still-bound state allowed and inclined his head. "What, exactly, did you have in mind?"

His voice was breathless.

"I imagine," Severus said, "that you might like to get the taste of the gag out of your mouth."

The corners of Scrimgeour's mouth curled up. "Did you...have something in mind?"

"I have many things in mind."

Severus could practically hear Scrimgeour's heart-rate speed up from where he stood.

"Are you going to untie me first?"

"Oh, I don't think we really need to think about untying you just yet, do you?" Severus watched as Scrimgeour tried, without success, to moisten his bottom lip. "Well?"

"No, Sir."

"No, I didn't think so. Now get up on your knees, and I'll find something to stick in your mouth."

"Yes, Sir."

Severus watched as Scrimgeour tried to do as he'd been told, but there were limits to what even a wizard's body could accomplish after it had been tied up for as long a time as he'd been. Scrimgeour growled in frustration, but kept rocking back and forth, trying to find a way to get up on his knees until finally Severus, growing increasingly aroused by the sight before him, could wait no longer.

"Never mind," he rasped, stilling Scrimgeour with one hand. "Stay where you are."

As he'd been instructed to do, Scrimgeour lay back against the moth-eaten blankets, while Severus unbuttoned his own trousers and pulled them down just below his hips. He took his already-hard erection in hand, then knelt down and rubbed the head of his prick against Scrimgeour's mouth, trailing precum along the man's bottom lip.

Breathing shallowly, Severus watched as Scrimgeour lick the clear fluid from his lips, then slid a hand between his own legs and cupped his bollocks, squeezing lightly as Scrimgeour swallowed.

"You look hungry," Severus murmured, pressing his knuckles softly against Scrimgeour's lips. "Ready for the entree, are you?"

Scrimgeour opened his mouth slightly, but Severus was in no mood to hear anything that bastard had to say. Before a single word could pass Scrimgeour's lips, Severus had thrust his hips forward and pushed his aching prick into Scrimgeour's warm, wet mouth.

It took rather less time than it usually took to bring Severus to the brink, but the sight of the Minister for Magic, naked and bound and down on his knees before him was absolutely intoxicating. Severus thrust forward - four, five, six times - his bollocks slapping against Scrimgeour's chin, each driving motion accompanied by a moan and more achingly perfect pressure from Scrimgeour's hot, tight mouth.

When he came, so hard and so fast that he came close to blacking out, the greedy manner with which Scrimgeour lapped up every last drop of come from Severus' spent prick was almost enough to bring him to orgasm for a second time.

"Thank you, Sir," Scrimgeour murmured breathlessly, licking a last drop of come off his bottom lip. "That was wonderful...exactly what I needed."

"In that case," Severus said smoothly, as he straightened up and re-fastened his trousers, "perhaps you might be so kind as to do something for me in return."

For a moment, Scrimgeour said nothing; the only sounds in the room were of Severus releasing, by hand, the buckles and ties that bound the other man until only the leather blindfold remained.

"I...can't see why not," Scrimgeour said slowly, his voice cautious and unsure for the first time in Severus' memory. "What is it you'd like me to do for you?"

"What I'd like," Severus said, untying the blindfold with one hand and holding his wand with the other, "is to see you strung up by your bollocks in the middle of Diagon Alley. What I'll settle for is a different matter."

Severus yanked the blindfold away from Scrimgeour's eyes and dropped it to the floor. He watched with satisfaction as Scrimgeour, still naked and curled up on the floor, blinked in the unaccustomed light for a moment, before looking up with horror.


Severus inclined his head. "At your service, Minister."

"But what...."

"Surely you don't think you're in any position to question me," Severus said. "Or...do you? Perhaps if you want to wrestle with a conundrum, you'd be better served by considering the dilemma of precisely what your political future might hold were I to share the knowledge of how you spend your free time."

"But would anyone believe you?"

Severus raised an eyebrow. "Don't be a fool. All it takes is one - the right one - and however begrudgingly, the young hero of the wizarding world seems, against all odds, to have finally learned to trust my word. In any case," he said smoothly, "I'm certain that any number of members of the Wizengamot, especially the more...traditional amongst them, would be quite interested in a pensieve record demonstrating their Minister's cocksucking expertise."

"You are a complete and utter bastard."

"Was there ever any doubt?" Severus asked with a smirk.

"All right. What do you want?"

"Hmm...that is the question, isn't it? Perhaps you'd like to be wearing some clothes when we conduct our negotiations?"

Severus handed Scrimgeour his trousers and the wire-rimmed spectacles he'd found in the pocket of the jacket.

Scrimgeour looked relieved to no longer be naked, but as his hand slid along the side of his trousers, he couldn't disguise his worried frown.

"You won't find what you're looking for," Severus said. "I've taken the liberty of removing your wand, as well as the not-very-cleverly disguised back-up wand you'd secreted in the lining of your jacket."

Scrimgeour grabbed the remainder of his clothes from Severus' hands, scowling angrily as he dressed.

"You may be Minister now, Scrimgeour, but as far as I'm concerned, you still think like an Auror, and not a particularly bright one." Severus twirled Scrimgeour's wands in his hands. "I've spent half my life under the watchful eye of Aurors, one way or another. Surely you didn't imagine I wasn't watching them, as well?"

After slipping his jacket on over his skintight Muggle tee-shirt, Scrimgeour leaned back against the wall, crossed his arms over his chest, and glared at Severus.

"All right, get talking, Snape," he said, unable to keep the petulant note out of his voice.

"But of course," answered Severus. "Since you asked so nicely."


It took less than a half hour for the two men to reach an agreement. Scrimgeour would, within a fortnight, find a means of reversing the law that had kept Severus from taking magical employment in the post-Voldemort wizarding world, and Severus, in turn, would keep the secret of Scrimgeour's extracurricular activities.

Neither man trusted the other, of course, so a wizard's vow was taken.

Severus's oath precluded him from sharing Scrimgeour's secret by speaking, writing, using a pensieve, or by enlisting any other means that a wizard could imagine.

If Scrimgeour had spent more time in the Muggle world (or at least more time that involved activities other than the ones in which he'd been engaged that night), he might have thought to ask whether there was a security system in place at Severus' place of employment...and whether it involved the use of video cameras.

Then again, he might not.


Kingsley looked at Severus for a long time. "You're not just saying you're pleased with the new job to be polite, are you?"

Severus snorted. "When have you ever known me to worry about being polite, even to you? No, it's not what I see myself doing ten years from now, but being allowed to do research and working with Arsenius on his new book? Of course I'm pleased. Thank you."

"All right," said Kingsley. "And you're sure that if it ever came down to it - if I ever found myself in need of a little...political leverage - you wouldn't object to my using the videotape?"

"For the last time," Severus said with a scowl, "I cannot discuss anything to do with...that."

"Sorry. I just wanted to...well, you know."

"I trust you to make whatever decisions you may have to make in the future," Severus said, before laying back down in the bed.

Kingsley leaned over and kissed Severus. "I love you, and I think you're really very frighteningly clever. You know that, don't you?"

"Hmm. I believe you might have mentioned that once or twice before," Severus murmured into the warm skin of Kingsley's neck, then returned to his self-imposed nightly task of licking every inch of Kingsley's bare flesh.

"Clever and hot," Kingsley said, reaching for the remote control and rewinding the videotape to the precise moment at which Scrimgeour began drooling after first sampling the flavour of Severus' cock.

"Turn over," Severus ordered. "I believe there's still a bit of shoulder-blade I haven't tasted this evening."

"But then I won't be able to watch the tape," Kingsley said with a grin. "And it is so very entertaining."

"You've watched it five times already this evening. Aren't you getting tired of it by now?"

Kingsley laughed. "Tired of watching you come? Never."

"What am I doing with an idiot like you?" Severus muttered, trying unsuccessfully to hide the flush on his sallow cheeks.

"At the moment, nothing," Kingsley said, turning toward Severus and letting the remote control slide to the floor. "But I believe what you were doing was licking."

"So I was," Severus said.

"Well?" Kingsley asked.

"Well what?"

"Are you waiting for me to beg you to continue?"

Severus raised an eyebrow.

"Are you waiting for me to beg you to continue...Sir?"

Severus smiled.

Comments, critiques, chit chat: beth-h (at) mrks (dot) org

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