Severus loved when his evenings ended completely student free like this. He made sure there were no detentions to oversee and he had gone out of his way to leave his grading in his classroom adjacent office. His precious free time, what little of it he had, he preferred not to spend it with students or thinking about students. Regardless of what the inhabitants of the school believed Severus did not go around assigning detentions for every little student infraction. Well, at least, not anymore. He was well aware of how many detentions a week Argus was willing to oversee and he tried not to go beyond that limit. Severus knew that every detention a student had to serve with him, the dreaded Potions master, was the same as throwing away his evenings.
He preferred to spend his free evenings in front of the fireplace in his rooms, a heavy book that he had not read before in his hand and the recent addition of an orange half-Kneazle in his lap. The old thing purred and rolled over so Severus could scratch his belly. The soft clink of a quill against the rim of the inkwell drew his attention to the other occupant of the room.
The biggest reason he hated supervising detentions sat at his desk, her wild hair running amok about her face. He didn’t let his happy contentment show, just marked his place in his book to focus on watching her. Her quill poised above the parchment, letting it drip as she stared at the wall across from her. Her eyes flickered back to her quill, now dry, and bit her lip as she dipped it again. Finally putting tip to paper to write a few comments before drifting off again.
After the third time he watched her quill run dry by dripping onto the blank parchment he finally spoke. “Where have your thoughts gone, Madam Snape?”
Hermione startled at his voice, dropping her quill, but turned a nervous smile to him. “I was actually thinking about what you said earlier this week, when we were discussing decorating the house?”
They had bought a house not far outside of Inverness at the beginning of the school year. It was an old, out of the way cottage that they had yet to completely occupy. They had boxes and crates of belongings deemed unnecessary to keep at the school under protective wards until the couple were able to sneak up each weekend to unpack them. They had spent many weekends attempting to put the place together.
“Thinking of colors again?” His lips curled upwards. “I stand firm. There will be no Gryffindor red in our bedroom.”
“No – I,” she sighed and seem to take a moment to fortify herself. His stomach churned in response. “The spare room upstairs? I know we were going to turn it into a guest room but…” She chewed her lip, her eyes falling back to the pool of ink.
“I truly don’t mind sharing a study with you, Hermione.” He said, setting down his book to stand and walking over to her. “You don’t need to move your things on my behalf. I…was in a foul mood when I said that.”
“Oh it’s not that, I knew you didn’t mean it, it’s just…” She reached for his hand and met his eyes with some amount of hesitance. “The room…I just think it might be more prudent to turn it into a nursery.”
“Now why would you think that?” His voice came out harsher than he anticipated. But she squeezed his hand, and he convinced himself that it was her hand and not his that started trembling.
“Because I’m pregnant, you big git.” She laughed and it sounded alarmingly watery. “Now if you think you’ll be alright, if we'll be alright, give me a kiss before I am completely overwhelmed.”
He bent over and pressed a brief kiss to her lips before sighing heavily. “Yes, I think we may just be alright.”