"Thank you for coming, Ollivander," Dumbledore said, watching the spry old man set up his cart.
"Always glad to make be of service for... special occasions." Ollivander waved his wand, and the cart, which looked a bit like a wardrobe on wheels, sprang open to reveal over two hundred wand boxes, each labeled with a distinct half-crescent moon. "These wands are much harder to manufacture, and so easily destroyed..." Ollivander shot a sharp look at the headmaster.
"Price is not an issue, Ollivander, you are to send the bill to me." Dumbledore said sternly.
At that moment the door to classroom 17 opened and Anzie peered in.
She still looks so frightened, Dumbledore thought to himself. "Come in, Miss Stern," he said with a smile. "I believe you know Mr. Ollivander."
Anzie came into the room and shut the door behind her. "Of course. Good to see you again, sir."
"Twelve inches, willow, wasn't it?" Mr. Ollivander grinned.
"It was," Anzie said, and half her mouth raised in a grimace.
"Not to worry, not to worry. Try this one - thirteen and a half inches, maple." Mr. Ollivander offered her a wand.
Hesitantly, Anzie wrapped her hand around the wand, only to have it explode, tiny fragments of wood splintering in every direction. Anzie yelped.
"Yes, I thought it might do that..." Ollivander said, selecting the next wand with more care. "Here, this one, thirteen inches, ash." The moment Anzie's hand touched the wood, there was a tremendous WHUMP! and the room filled with thick gray smoke. The wand had disappeared.
Anzie coughed and waved the thinning smoke away. Mr. Ollivander was already proffering the next wand.
"Thirteen and three quarter inches, yew." It melted.
"Thirteen and a half inches, hemlock." It cracked in half.
"Thirteen and sixteen thirty-secondths, hemlock." It caught on fire.
"Thirteen and nine thirteenths, spruce." It screamed and went limp.
"Thirteen and four fifths, cherry." It sputtered like a Muggle car and vibrated violently back and forth.
"Thirteen inches, cypress." Anzie felt a cool, tingling sensation as she took the wand in hand. With a laugh of triumph, she raised it over her head and brought it down in a shower of silver stars. Dumbledore clapped enthusiastically and Ollivander smiled. "Well done, Miss Stern, well done."
"Indeed," said Snape from the doorway, arms folded, scowling. Anzie whipped around, startled, and Snape stared.
Soft sunlight from the dirty classroom windows gave Anzie a radiant glow, and silver stars caught in her hair and robes, giving her a shimmering texture. She blinked, and bits of stardust fell down her cheeks. Snape fought to regain himself. "If you're done playing in the dust, Miss Stern, I believed we had arranged for remedial potions."
"Oh! So sorry, Professor," Anzie said apologetically. "I'd lost track of time."
"My office, Miss Stern."
"Yes, Sir," Anzie said as Snape swept into the hallway. She turned to Ollivander. "Thank you, very much. It is a beautiful wand. And thank you, Headmaster." She dipped a small curtsey, something her German grandmother had always insisted on, and hurried from the room.
Ollivander removed a piece of parchment from his robes and began happily calculating the price of the broken wands, plus the price of the cypress, plus travel expenses. "That is not your ordinary werewolf," Ollivander said, scribbling the sum with a flourish.
"I quite agree," Dumbledore said, taking the bill from Ollivander. He adjusted his half-moon spectacles as he read. "Ah... Ollivander, I see you've forgotten my discount."
"If my memory serves me correctly, the illegal manufacture of werewolf wands is punishable by - "
"Foolish me," Ollivander said, snatching the bill back. "I have forgotten your discount."
Snape was arranging potions ingredients on his desk when Anzie entered. "I expect you to treat any remedial potions as a class, Miss Stern," he said, setting a dragonsalt and next to the boomslang skin. "Ten points from Gryfindor for your tardiness." There was a moment of silence - Snape expected her to argue, or at the very least, whine.
Instead, she was summoning her parchment and quills from her rooms below. The zoomed up the staircase into her arms. She conjured a chair for herself and sat quietly, ready to take notes on the lesson. Snape was secretly pleased at her tranquility, and launched himself into a discussion of the wolfbane potion. "The wolfsbane potion is one of the most complex brews in stoichiomagicry, and first you will need a thourough understanding of the arithmatical proportions behind it. The unbalanced equation is - " Snape drew a glittering arithmancy equation in the air, and Anzie stared at it intently, before scribbling a quick calculation and announcing the correct proportions.
"Fourteen parts dragonsalt to six and a half parts wolfsbane to nine parts boomslang skin and one part ashwinder egg ...and... fifty nine and half parts icewater."
"Correct. It should then become apparent," Snape rearranged the equation, "Why sugar makes this potion useless."
"It's the purity of water, isn't it?" Anzie said, tapping her chin and examining the equation. With so much water in the potion, any change in the vapor pressure wouldn't allow the ingredients to simmer correctly..."
"Again, correct. Select your ingredients and begin work. I will be monitoring your progress, but I was not hired to babysit. You'll excuse me while I do the work I am paid for." Snape looked down his nose at her, haughtily.
"Certainly, Professor," Anzie said, undaunted by his sarcasm. She was already holding the ashwinder eggs to the light, checking for blemishes.
Snape pointed Anzie towards the cauldron in his office fireplace, and she happily trotted off to the hearth. Snape shuffled his papers and began marking exams. Anzie hummed a Weird Sisters ballad under her breath as she prepared the fire. "Miss Stern, if you insist on making noises while brewing, try to broaden your taste in music," Snape drawled, marking a bold T on an unlucky fifth year's paper.
"Is there something you'd prefer, Professor Snape?" Anzie asked, measuring out dragonsalt.
"Heart of Darkness," Snape retorted, naming a band well before her time.
"Bridge over bloodshed/A silent burning," Anzie crooned their hit song. "The night is silent/The tide is turning..." She hummed the refrain under her breath. Snape raised an impressed eyebrow and returned to his work. Anzie grinned to herself.
There was half an hour's quiet before the cauldron exploded. Anzie had the peace of mind to grab Snape's notes out of the spilling potion before scrambling out of the way. Professor Snape stood from behind his desk, pointed his wand at the potion, and barked a commanding "Confuto venenum!"
The potion halted and he vanished the mess. "Well, Miss Stern, what do you have to say for yourself?"
Anzie's face was black with smoke from the explosion. "Nothing, Sir, I followed your directions."
"Did you read the part about the proper tarantulation of the wolfsbane?"
"Yes, but Sir, it's implied that the process is adiamagic, and therefore should occur directly at the end of - "
"Have you no sense?" Snape sneered. "Adiamagic tarantulation will throw the ashwinder eggs into combustion! Trust a Gryfindor to ignore that. Ten points from - " Snape halted. Anzie was smiling. She carefully unrolled the parchment and pointed to a line, in Snape's own hand, indicating the incorrect order he had just described. Snape snatched the roll from her hands. "That will be all for tonight, Miss Stern, we will continue tomorrow after your classes. Report to Dumbledore's office in the morning before breakfast, he has some things he wishes to discuss with you."
Anzie grinned, wolfishly, the ash on her face crinkling around her eyes. "Goodnight, Professor." She dropped a quick curtsey and left.
Snape scowled, sat at his desk, and failed the next six OWL papers.