Albus spent the rest of the afternoon at Arabella’s as the three, soon to be four as Minerva arrived, adults discussed the quickest way to secure Harry’s future. Albus and Minerva, having previously thought that they knew the younger wizard well were amazed at what they didn’t know. Finally, Albus couldn’t contain his curiosity as to how quickly the Italian adoption papers had been acquired.
“Severus? Who is Petra and how did she get the adoption papers to your grandmother so quickly?”
“Finally worked out you don’t know as much about me or my family as you thought?” Severus laughed before he took pity on the older wizard “Petra is married to my cousin Bellerophon Principessa.”
It was now Minerva’s turn to look confused “I didn’t think either of your parents had siblings dear, so how do you have cousins?”
“They’re technically my second cousins I believe or something similar – they are the children of my mother’s cousins. We all grew up together on the Principessa estates so we’re quite close.”
“That’s wonderful. Now, we’ll need some people to witness the papers, the more powerful the better. That way we’ll be able to get the papers through quicker.”
“How many signatories do we need Albus?”
“I believe it’s four that we need. Do we have any ideas?”
“How do the joint heads of the Italian Auror Department, the French Minister of Magick and the International Liaison to the Russian Ministry of Magick sound?”
“That sounds wonderful dear boy if we could get them” he looked at Severus again suspiciously “More cousins?”
“Well, Bellerophon and Ciceron are related to me – they’re the joint heads of the Italian Auror Division. Andrei Petrovich, International Liaison, is related to me. He’s a second cousin or something of that ilk as well. The current French Minister of Magick, Cygnus Delacour, is related to me rather distantly. I can never remember how. He married Lucius Malfoy’s cousin if I remember rightly.”
“At least that’s the signatories sorted. They won’t mind being witnesses will they?”
“No, they’ve been pestering me to get an heir, never mind if it’s through adoption. They claim that I’m such a good uncle I’ll be a wonderful father. Sophia can brew the Paternitas for me – she’s a freelance Potions Mistress and yet another distant relative. Her husband Diego and Octavian can take care of all the legal side – Octavian’s been working as consiglieri for the Cosa Nostra. If he can help them he can help us.”
Minerva and Arabella sat with shocked expressions on their faces “I think I’m speaking for Minerva and myself when I say we’re both amazed and impressed. We never thought we would be able to sort things out this quickly. All that needs to be decided is what to do about you’re teaching position and what you’re going to call him.”
“Call him?” Severus looked startled “What do you mean call him?”
“Well, once you’ve adopted him and given him the Paternitas potion he won’t be a Potter anymore he’ll be a Snape and Harry Snape just sounds wrong. So, what are you going to call him?”
Severus looked down at the child in question where he rested on Severus’ chest as good as gold, playing with his shirt buttons. “Alexander” he stated firmly “Alexander Lucian Severus Snape after family tradition. Alexander for the Emperor, Lucian for my grandma’s uncle and Severus for me.”
“Well I think it’s a very strong suitable name. I think Alexander will suit him.”
The three of them looked indulgently at Severus who didn’t seem able to take his eyes ff of Harry, one long finger stroking a soft cheek. His normally stern face had softened completely and a small smile played across his lips. He was completely oblivious to the conversation playing out over his head.
“What are you going to do about a Potions Master for the next couple of years Albus? Teaching won’t be conducive to effectively being a single father to a two year old. I can’t imagine Severus wanting to let house-elves look after Harry while he teaches”
“I do believe you’re right Arabella. Besides after the life he’s had for the last nine months I think he’s going to need lots of love and reassurance and I don’t think that Severus could provide that whilst teaching. On the other hand potions professors are very hard to come by let alone masters of Severus’ calibre. I wonder…” she trailed off momentarily “Albus, do you think Horace Slughorn would consent to teach? He taught whilst Severus was a student and he’d be a good head of Slytherin as well.”
“I think it’s worth a trip to see Horace. We may be able to persuade him in person. We also need the guardianship papers – we only have adoption papers. Severus?” He had to call the younger mans name several times before he looked up and paid attention “We’re leaving now child. Is there anything you need from Diagon Alley?”
“Yes there is actually. I was going to owl an order to Madam Malkins but if you don’t mind it would be most helpful as long as Minerva keeps an eye on you.”
“I think I can manage to keep him reigned in. What do you want – things for Harry or things for yourself?”
“Things for Harry please. Pyjamas and a blanket or something. I was going to get them for his birthday but now I think if you could get them owled as quickly as possible. He seemed to like the all-in-ones that I transfigured him.”
“I think we can manage that. If we go now we can get there before the alley shuts for the evening. Come along Albus” the witch spoke briskly. She gave Arabella a brief hug before stooping to press a kiss to Harry’s forehead and Severus’ cheek “Congratulations Severus. You’re going to have a fine son. I would advise you to make a floo call – I’m sure your grandparents would like to know that they are going to have a great-grandson. Oh for Merlin’s sake Albus, will you stop pulling faces at the child. We have to go. We’ll call back tomorrow.”
With that Minerva chivvied her husband out of the front door and past the wards so that they could apparate. Silence reigned in the tiny house until Arabella broke it
“Right, well I’m going to go shopping. We need some food and I hadn’t budgeted having Harry with us. Why don’t you floo your grandparents whilst I’m out? I’m assuming that you’ll be staying with them until Harry’s old enough to move to Hogwarts and I’m sure they’ll need some notice in order to make provisions.”
“I think you’re right. Come on little one, I think it’s time for you to be introduced to your great-grandparents. What do you think?”
Harry said nothing, just continued looking up at the man who was going to be his new father. Making sure that there was no way for Harry to get floo powder in his face Severus took a pinch of floo powder and threw it into the flames shouting “Villa Principessa” as he did so. To his relief both Antonio and Lucrezia were in the kitchen and the two of them started at seeing their grandson in the fireplace complete with a small child.
“Sev, is there something you want to tell us lad?”
“Erm, this is Harry and erm, I guess it’s just easiest to say this straight – I’m adopting Harry. I was wondering whether you would let us live at the villa with you for the next couple of years. Of course if it’s too problematic we can find somewhere else.”
“Well of course you’re staying here. We’ll need to get the old nursery ready – it’s a good thing it’s next to your room although I’m assuming that he’d like a crib in your room for the time being. When will you be able to bring him home?”
Severus just smiled at that phrase ‘bring him home’, “Well his relatives are returning on Tuesday and we need them to sign over guardianship before I can adopt him. I can’t envisage that taking too long – by Friday at the latest and then I will be able to bring him home. The adoption papers and Paternitas potion can be taken care of at the villa.”
Lucrezia clapped her hands in glee “Oh this is so lovely. It will be so nice to have a child around the place again. Are you going to tell the rest of the family now or after everything has been signed and made official?”
“I’m planning on involving then in the process to make sure that things go as quickly as possible and that everything is completely legal. We were going to see if Bellerophon, Ciceron, Andrei and Cygnus would witness the adoption papers and I was going to ask Diego and Octavian to check all of the legalities and get Sophia to brew the Paternitas potion.” He stopped talking as he felt a tiny hand fist into his hair “I think this little one’s getting a bit fidgety so we’re going to go now. I’ll keep you updated with how it’s going. Bye grandma, grandpa”
The two of them withdrew themselves from the fireplace, back into Arabella’s sitting room. As soon as they had cleared the fireplace Harry wrinkled his nose and sneezed before looking up at Severus with a pleading look on his face
“And what’s that look for little one?”
“P’ay?” the toddler enquired
“You want to play?” It took Severus a minute to decipher the toddler’s speech “Well, we can play with a ball like we have been. I haven’t got very many other toys here.”
He broke off as he saw several owls winging their way towards them, packages attached securely to their talons. He unwrapped them swiftly, seeing that one of them was the clothing parcel he had requested from Madam Malkins. Upon opening the second parcel he saw that Albus had successfully dragged Minerva into Drosselmeyer’s, the wizarding toy shop in Diagon Alley. Out of the parcel came tumbling several books, some new paints and a wizarding colouring book. Severus swiftly got Harry settled down with the colouring book and paints; the toddler was completely entranced when he discovered that, once fully coloured in, the pictures moved. With Harry suitably engrossed he unpacked the clothes that Minerva had purchased and sent. There were several pairs of trousers and some little shirts, a tiny pair of black robes and three pairs of little all-in-one sleep suits; one in plain Slytherin green, another in black with dragons and a third in navy blue with fluttering golden snitches and broomsticks. There was also something else that had been wrapped further that had a hand-written note taped to it that caused Severus to gape in shock as he read it:
Dear son, I saw this and I couldn’t resist it. Consider it the first gift of many to our new grandson. We’ll see you tomorrow. Love Grandpa Albus and Grandma Minerva
Severus started at the tangible proof that the elder couple regarded him as a son. His relationship with his birth parents had completely deteriorated by the time he had started attending Hogwarts. He had regarded the Headmaster as a surrogate father since he had been eleven and since becoming a Death Eater and subsequently a spy, the transfiguration professor had become almost a surrogate mother. Both Poppy Pomfrey and Minerva McGonagall had looked after the younger professor many times after Death Eater meetings, healing his injuries and soothing him to sleep. He’d never felt confident enough to tell the two professors what they meant to him and to see his feelings reciprocated and in ink on parchment made him choke up slightly. Setting the note aside he opened the package to reveal a beautifully made miniature patchwork quilt. The squares were all different shades of green and black with silver edging and the Slytherin crest embroidered in the middle. Attached to this was another little note reading ‘I have no doubt that with the future Head of Slytherin as his new father that little angel will be a future snakelet’ in Minerva’s instantly recognisable hand.
He grinned and turned his attention back to Harry who was still happily colouring away at his feet. He tried not to laugh as he saw the tip of Harry’s tongue sticking out between his teeth in concentration and he just couldn’t help himself. He scooped Harry up into his lap complete with colouring book, ignoring Harry’s squeal of surprise.
“Hey little one, are you enjoying the colouring? It looks wonderful” he praised
Harry looked up with surprise, a shy but pleased grin on his face
“Are you hungry? Shall we get you some supper and then I think it’s time for all little ravens to be tucked up in bed hmm?”
“Stowy?” huge emerald eyes looked up pleadingly
“Yes I’ll read you a story as well. Shall we go and see if Arabella’s back with food yet?”
Severus transferred Harry onto his hip, the colouring book still clenched in the toddlers grasp. Upon exploration of the downstairs they discovered that Arabella had not returned from shopping.
“Arabella’s not back yet so there’s no food at the moment so why don’t we go and get you bathed and into your pyjamas and then we’ll hope that you don’t get too dirty having your dinner. Once you’ve had dinner then we’ll read a story.”
It was at this point that Harry’s spirit decided to show itself. “No baff daddy. Stowy now p’ease”
“I’m sorry Harry but you’re having a bath. You don’t want to smell do you? I promise, just a quick bath and then we’ll read a story.”
Harry pouted but made no more protests about having a bath. The items that had been delivered were charmed to levitate behind them as they walked up the stairs and into the moderately sized bathroom. The taps were turned on and a flick of a wand caused bubbled to start emerging from the taps in addition to the water. As the tub was filling up Severus gently undressed Harry, noticing as he did so just how slender the child was as well as the numerous bruises covering the tiny frame. He hadn’t noted them previously as he had just transfigured Harry’s pre-existing clothes into items that were both better fitting and in better condition. He quickly conjured a camera in order to document the injuries knowing that it would help his petition for adoption before casting a spell used predominantly by healers in the case of abused children. The spell would document any mistreatment the child had suffered to date. He sent the parchment flying back to his room and turned his attention back to Harry.
He tested the temperature of the water to make sure that it wasn’t too hot before placing Harry in the water. He transfigured several pieces of soap into a couple of rubber ducks. Harry giggled, immediately distracted, and failed to notice as Severus washed his hair successfully. Once this was done however, he looked up with a mischievous look on his face. Severus barely had time to wonder at that look before his shirt was soaked through. He looked down in disbelief before looking up again at the giggle Harry had emitted.
“Ha ha, very funny little one. It’s not amusing to splash Daddy. Now, I think you’ve been in there long enough. If I leave you in any longer you’ll probably get me even wetter!”
With that he scooped Harry up and wrapped him in the fluffy towel that was lying ready. He dried him off and then dressed him in one of the new sleep suits that Minerva had owled, the one that was covered in broomsticks and snitches. He had just finished buttoning it up when he heard the front door open and Arabella come in.
“That sounds like Arabella’s back. Let’s go and get you some food, then we can read a story and you go to bed raven.”
Harry clapped his hands in glee at the one word in the sentence that he understood and liked “Stowy!”
“Yes brat, a story. We’ve got quite a few for you to choose from now; How the Hippogriff found his Wings, The Baby Dragon who couldn’t Breathe Fire, How the Phoenix learnt to Sing, The Pegasus who had no friends and the first in the Greco the Gryphon series”.
By the time he had finished talking they were downstairs in the kitchen. Severus looked up from talking to Harry to see Arabella watching them with a fond grin on her face.
“Do you know what, you’re already a father Severus. I don’t think Harry could ask for anyone better.”
“It’s not been decided completely yet Arabella. The Dursley’s still need to sign over the guardianship rights. Until I have those I can’t adopt him. Although I can’t see that being a problem.” The last sentence was uttered so darkly that it caught Arabella’s attention.
“I’ll tell you later once he’s asleep. Is it okay to get him fed and then I can read him a story and put him to bed.”
“That’s not a problem. Just give me a few moments to find something and then we can get him settled down for the night.”
Within ten minutes Arabella had the dinner ready and Harry was strapped into the high chair so that Severus could feed him more easily. Less than fifteen minutes later and Harry was falling asleep in his remaining dinner causing both Severus and Arabella to chuckle. Severus stood up and picked Harry up out of the high chair and toted him off upstairs where he read him a story before tucking him into his crib under the patchwork quilt that Minerva and Albus had sent. Once he was satisfied that Harry was asleep, at least for the time being, he made his way downstairs to Arabella, the parchment listing Harry’s mistreatment clutched tightly in his hand. They kept the conversation light whilst they ate dinner but once they had moved into the sitting room and each had poured themselves a glass of spirits – Arabella whisky and Severus vodka, the conversation turned serious.
“What did you mean earlier Severus? When you said that it shouldn’t be a problem to get guardianship of Harry?”
Severus handed her the parchment detailing all of the mistreatment that Harry had suffered at the hands of his relatives and spoke the spell that would allow the camera to print the photos he had taken.
“That parchment details the results of a spell that is primarily employed by healers in cases of abused children. It is designed to document any mistreatment, physical or emotional, to said child at the hands of their parents and/or guardians.” Severus rubbed one hand over his face before he pinched the bridge of his nose “Take a look at the list Arabella.”
The middle-aged squib did as he asked and gasped in shock “Severus, this is terrible. They’re his family! According to this he’s been half-starved since he’s lived there, he’s got multiple bruises, had bruised ribs, a broken wrist, concussion three times and multiple sprained ankles. He’s only been with them nine months! And what they’ve been calling him; freak, boy, telling him that he’s worthless and a burden. There’s no wonder he took to you so quickly. You were probably one of the first people to show his kindness. Now, you have photographic proof yes?” At Severus’ nod she continued briskly “Well that’s fine then. We’ll get the guardianship papers from Albus tomorrow and we can fill them out and have everything ready. Then on Tuesday Albus and Minerva will be coming for his birthday and we’ll get them to bring Poppy so she can check Harry over. As soon as the Dursley’s arrive home we’ll get them to sign the documents, which, having seen that list, shouldn’t be too problematic. And then you can take Alexander Snape home. Now, go to bed.”
Grinning, Severus bade her good night and then followed her command.
As Arabella had said the next morning’s owl post saw the delivery of necessary guardianship papers from the British Ministry of Magick as well as their Italian equivalent. They spent the rest of the day filling in the paperwork and organising the witnesses. An auror friend of Albus Dumbledore, Alastor Moody, had agreed to witness the signing as had Octavian Salieri, a Sicilian lawyer and Severus’ second cousin by marriage. Octavian had already been briefed to inform Antonio and Lucrezia if everything went as smoothly as they were anticipating as the relative ease with which everything had been accomplished meant that Severus and Alexander would be arriving three days earlier than they had originally thought.
That night Severus went to bed with the knowledge that at the same time the next day, if all went well, Harry would legally be his son. Before he went to sleep he flicked his wand at the presents he had bought to wrap them. As much as he wanted to do it himself it had never been one of his strong points.
The next morning dawned and Severus was up earlier than normal due to the nerves that had taken residence in the pit of his stomach. He walked downstairs to find Arabella sat at the kitchen table, a pot of tea and a wrapped present in front of her.
She smiled up at him “Couldn’t sleep?”
He shook his head as he pulled the teapot closer. “No. Harry’s still out like a light though. I’ll give him another hour and then I’ll wake him up.”
The two then retreated into a comfortable silence for the next hour that was only broken when Arabella stood to make breakfast. Seeing the wide variety of food that she was making Severus raised an eyebrow in question
“It’s the boys birthday Severus and I think a choice of breakfast is the least he deserves”
Severus’ lips quirked at her response before he moved upstairs to find Harry curled up in his blankets on his side, one hand fisted in his blankets and the thumb of the other stuck firmly in his mouth. Severus started to smooth his hand through the child’s hair talking softly to him as he did so and was gradually rewarded with sleepy green eyes staring at him.
“Good morning little one. Happy birthday! Would you like to come downstairs and have some breakfast?”
The child nodded shyly and then, looking nervous, held his arms out in a childish gesture to be carried, something that Severus obliged him with, placing a soft kiss on his forehead as well.
They walked downstairs into the kitchen and Harry’s eyes grew to the size of saucers at the sight of all the food laid out on the table.
Arabella smiled at him “Happy birthday child. What would you like for breakfast?”
Harry looked rather overwhelmed so, as Severus sat down with Harry on his knee, she placed a plate of boiled egg and soldiers in front of him, so that Harry could feed himself and Severus could help him if necessary.
Once Harry had finished his breakfast, smearing egg across his face in the process, Severus took him upstairs and cleaned the egg off his face before dressing him in a pair of trousers and a little white t-shirt emblazoned with a Hungarian Horntail. Just as they finished getting dressed they heard the floo activate and the voices of Albus and Minerva floated up the stairs.
“Shall we go and see Albus and Minerva little one? Then we can open your birthday presents.”
Shock radiated from the tiny form perched on his hip “Pwesents? For me?”
“Yes, presents for you child. Surely you got presents at Christmas?”
Harry shook his head “Duddy gets pwesents, boy doesn’t get them. Me get cupboard.”
Severus clutched him tighter “Well, that’s going to change little one. I know for a fact that there are lots of presents waiting for you downstairs. Let’s go down and start opening them and then why don’t we go to the park for a picnic?”
They walked downstairs and once again Harry’s eyes grew wide at the sight of the presents that covered the sitting room. Just as they made it downstairs Poppy Pomfrey and Octavian Salieri came through the floo both bearing a present or in Octavian’s case a sack of presents. He just smiled ruefully at Severus and said one word “Lucrezia” at which they both laughed. Severus sat down on the floor with Harry in his lap and summoned the two presents he had bought for Harry that were now wrapped up in Slytherin colours.
“These two are from me little one. Which one do you want to open first?”
Harry hesitated momentarily before he reached out and took hold of the slightly more solid package. Taking hold of one corner he started to carefully tear the paper. He looked back at Severus as if for a second confirmation that yes they were his presents and when Severus nodded he giggled before he shredded the paper. He gasped as he pulled out the mobile and smiled happily
Severus smiled himself “Yes little one, stars. And the moon as well. It’s a mobile, so we can hang it over your bed. Do you like it?” The last question was asked both hesitantly and nervously
Harry nodded furiously and threw himself at Severus, hugging the older man tightly around his neck “Thank you!”
Severus chuckled in relief “You’re very welcome child. Now, sit down and open the rest of your presents”
Harry plonked himself down in Severus’ lap and reached his hands out, grasping the other present wrapped in Slytherin green. Finally acting his age without hesitation he ripped off the paper to reveal a black plush panther with emerald green eyes.
“Cat! Daddy, it’s a cat!”
“It’s not a cat, it’s a panther. What are you going to call him?”
“Blackie” came the emphatic answer from the two year old after several minutes of deliberation.
Albus and Minerva looked on indulgently as Arabella handed over a gaily wrapped present that was obvious by its shape that it was a book
Harry ripped the paper to reveal a beautifully illustrated collection of A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh stories. Harry grinned and said a shy “thank you” to Arabella before looking up at Severus “More stowies”
“Yes brat, more stories. Muggle ones as well.” He looked up as he heard a sniff to see Poppy Pomfrey reaching for her handkerchief. “Raven, this is Poppy. She works with Grandpa Albus and Grandma Minerva and she used to, and still does look after me.”
Harry smiled shyly at the middle-aged matron “Hi Poppy”
“Hello pet. You can call me Aunty Poppy if you’d like. Would you like to open this present from me and Alastor?”
“Where is Alastor Poppy?” Minerva enquired “I would have thought he would have been here by now”
“He got called into the auror headquarters for some sort of emergency. He said that he’d be along as soon as he’s got things down to a controllable level so that Auror Shacklebolt can take over. Anyway, the present is from both of us – Alastor wouldn’t have a clue what to buy a child”
Harry smiled as he took the brightly wrapped present and started to open it to reveal several books about the magickal world designed especially for children including one on quidditch. Harry smiled in thanks before a small nudge from Severus prompted him to speak.
“Thank you Aunty Poppy”
Poppy sniffed yet again and wiped away a stray tear “You’re welcome pet”
As Harry flicked through the books pointing things out to Severus, Albus and Minerva had retrieved several presents from their cloaks and with a tap of their wands returned them to their original size. With that done they placed them in front of Harry before they sat back.
“Happy birthday child, may it be the first of many”
Harry smiled once again as Severus helped him with the first of many present from both Albus and Minerva as well as presents from Octavian’s sack. Spread around them by the time they had finished were books of stories, children’s toys such as balls and building blocks and various articles of clothing.
Just as they were getting ready to leave for the park they heard a car pulling up, the sound of car doors slamming and then a loud obnoxious voice
“Come on Pet, let’s get Duddy inside. We can leave the freak at Mrs Figg’s until later.”
Severus looked down as he felt the form in his arms start to shake. He hauled Harry further up into his arms so that the child could wrap his arms around Severus’ neck and bury his face in his shoulder. Severus felt hot tears start to soak into his neck and the collar of his shirt and wrapped his arms tighter as he whispered so quietly that only Harry could hear him.
“Hush baby, it’s alright. Everything’s going to be fine I promise. You’re not going to be going back there my raven. You’re mine now little one. We just have to go and see them for fifteen minutes. That’s all. I’m not going to let you go once. You don’t even have to look at them if you don’t want to.”
“Then you my daddy?” came a tiny, scared whisper in his ear
“Then I’ll be your daddy” Severus confirmed with a nod “Do you think you can be a brave little boy for me?” Harry nodded and Severus pressed a kiss to his forehead “Well done little one. I’m very proud of you.”
It was at that point that the front door slammed open and in stomped Alastor Moody muttering under his breath about “Bloody obnoxious muggles” and “rude, fat little pigs”. He stopped mumbling as he saw everyone staring at him “Right, well are we going to go and sort this out only we’ve just had a huge tip-off. I’ve got an hour and a half before we raid Walden Macnair’s manor.”
With that he turned back round and stomped out of the door, followed closely by Octavian and Albus with Severus in the rear, Harry still clinging to his neck. The four wizards made their way to the Dursley residence and as Albus knocked on the door Severus pressed another reassuring kiss into the mop of hair situated on his shoulder.
Thus it was that Petunia Dursley opened her front door to the formidable sight of four fully trained adult male wizards. Alastor Moody, dressed in full auror robes and with a magickal eye, part of his nose and half a leg missing, had the ability to terrify fully fledged Death Eaters never mind a weak-willed, easily scared Muggle such as Petunia Dursley. This was without the addition of both Octavian and Albus in full wizarding robes never mind Severus, who had transfigured his Muggle clothes to resemble his teaching robes and had transfixed Petunia with one of his deathly glares.
Severus stepped forward and started to speak in a silky voice that spelt trouble to all who knew it “Mrs Dursley I presume? We’re here to speak to you about your nephew. Harry Potter. Would you be so kind as to invite us in?” the latter was said in a tone that brooked no refusal
Silently Petunia stepped back and shakily directed them into the sitting room where Vernon Dursley was sprawled “Who the hell are you freaks? What are you doing in my house?”
Again it was Severus that spoke “We’re here about your nephew Harry”
“You want the freak? He’s yours for two hundred pounds. We want something for having to put up with him. What do you want him for anyway? Worthless freak, he’s no good for anything. Useless piece of shit that he is”
Severus shot a sideways glance at Octavian to make sure what was being said was being recorded “On the contrary, Harry is a very special little boy, not a useless piece of shit. As for what I want to do with him, I want to adopt him. Now, will you sign these papers?”
“Will I get 200 quid if I do sign them?”
“No Mr Dursley you will not. If you do not sign these papers I will go to the Muggle Child Protection Services where I can produce enough evidence to have your son taken away and you and your wife put in prison for child abuse, cruelty and neglect. Now, will you sign the goddamn papers.”
Severus smirked as he watched first Vernon and then Petunia shakily sign the documents that would make Severus Harry’s legal guardian before both he, Alastor and Octavian signed them. As the parchments disappeared in a flash of smoke to their respective departments he rose and bowed mockingly to the cowering Dursley’s.
“Thank you. I am ever so much obliged to you” before stalking out.
Once outside he plucked Harry off his shoulder and spun him round in the air before clutching him close again