The year finally got into the swing of things and I was bogged down by endless work. Grading papers and such. Sometimes I forgot why I took that job, but then I remembered that I loved…or at least I enjoyed…well, I had an inclination for…it was necessary that…well, nevermind. No, I really had no good reason at all to remain there. I hated children, I hated colleagues of any kind, I hated castles, I hated breath mints, I hated potions, I hated education, and I especially hated tapestries. I did love the color black, though. That is something…I’m not quite sure where that fits in, but I’m sure I’ll find its pertinence eventually.
My job dissatisfaction did not, however, interfere with my ability to do my work. I faithfully glared at students, made inspirationally sarcastic comments about their handiwork, and confiscated weapons. Like quills, for example. The students had the nerve to protest. They said:
“But professor, we’re merely taking notes!”
“How am I supposed to finish this assignment without a quill?”
“Quills are allowed, you know!”
“Yeah, we need them, I’m sure you understand.” Blahblahblah. Excuses excuses. Those impertinent little fools. They all deserved years of detention. Dangerous weapons, quills. Who was it that said the pen is mightier than the sword? No matter. It’s very true.
After my success with quills, I moved on to hats. I crept up behind and snatched hats off of those foolish enough to wear them. It was quite amusing. I would hide the stolen hat behind my back very quickly and they would whip around and see me there. Not one had the nerve to accuse their professor of stealing a hat, so they all blamed their friends, whom I would then give detention for stealing. Quite an entertaining game, I must say, and all of my own invention. A professor must have some educational way to amuse himself.
Unfortunately, I was on my sixth hat when a Hufflepuff named Billia Shee said, in one of those loud and obnoxious voices, “Professor Snape, why did you take his hat?” Just as she said that, the boy whose hat I’d stolen looked up at me, with the hat still in my hand. The surrounding group of students turned to stare, as if professors stealing student’s hats was something unusual and interesting.
Luckily, I had the presence of mind to get out of the situation. I bore down on the boy and said, “How dare you wear a hat in this school?”
“But Professor—“ he (Dean Thomas, a thoroughly stupid First Year Gryffindor) said.
“It’s the dress code, Professor!” said his friend, “They make us buy them before term starts! Besides, you’re wearing one, too.”
I ignored her and went on, “Outright promiscuity! Indecency! Direct and intentional disobedience! I don’t think you can even comprehend the gravity of your situation—“
“It’s a hat Professor!” Thomas said, “There’s nothing promiscuous about it. I don’t know what you’re—“ Unfortunately, at that moment five hats fell out of my sleeves with a great thump onto the floor. Everyone just stared at me. I stared back. It could have gone on forever, I tell you. Just staring, staring…staring…staring…About a half an hour later I moved to sweep dignifiedly out of the hall when the dungbombs I had been saving for McGonagall fell out of my socks and bounced around the students’ feet. I continued to glare around at them severely as I crawled around the floor and tucked every last dungbomb back into my socks. No point in just leaving them there. The students began to gape at each other. I heard one say, “Is this really happening?” And the other replied, “Highly unlikely.”
I then stood up, still with the utmost dignity and severity, took a sweeping bow, turned on my heels, and ran. Sadly, just before I turned the corner my hat flew off and the three peaches and a banana that I had been saving from breakfast stumbled out. I retrieved my hat, trying to look casual, but I glanced back and there was still a gaggle of students, looking like the possessed, just sort of ogling me. As if they didn’t have lives of their own, which, now that I think of it, is probably true.
That fiasco put me in a rather foul mood, so I limped around the castle looking for guilty faces when, wouldn’t you know it, I spotted three simpering little Gryffindors...well they weren’t simpering, really. It’s just the word simpering has this wonderful negative ring to it; I can hardly resist using it now and again. But in any case, I marched right up to those foul creatures (because it was Potter, Weasley, and Granger, of course) and confiscated Potter’s library book. It was Quidditch Through the Ages. Just because he’s going to be Seeking at that stupid game tomorrow doesn’t mean he can just waltz around with any old Quidditch book. The nerve.
Even worse, during class that day he did not for one moment look away from my feet. The little pervert. I am very seldom creeped out, but his obsession with them is getting to be a little much for my nerves. I think I have figured out a way to walk without letting my shoes poke out from under my robes, but I’ll have to wait until my limp goes away to try it out.
Oh yes, and I had to meet Harry one final time before the day was out. He decided to spy on the Staff Room. Filch and I were attempting to change my bandages (and failing, but I don’t want to go to Madam Pomfrey until it has been confirmed by at least three sources that she is not madly in love with me), when I saw these little eyes peeping through the door looking at my feet. I dropped my robes quickly. He tried to shut the door when he saw me.
“POTTER!” I yelled, though I didn’t actually know it was him yet. I just figured that first of all he is the only student I know who is obsessed with my feet and secondly, it is a safe bet that the only nosy idiot who would go poking around the teachers lounge and then have the ability to get caught would be descended from James Potter. Turns out I was right. He tried to mumble some excuse or something, but I couldn’t hear because I was too busy yelling, “GET OUT! OOOOOUT!”
He was just lucky I was in a good mood.
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