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Chapter Thirteen
Sev's First Order Meeting

“ Try harder, Sev.  Harder!”

“ I don't know if I can.”

“ I know you can.  Now, go lower.  Really try.”

“ I am trying.”

“ Not hard enough.  Again.”

“ Do I have to?”

“ Yes!  You can do it!  Get them lower.  Really feel it.”

“ I don't feel it, Harry.”

“ You will, you just need to practice.”

“ I have been.  Every day in front of the mirror.  I'll never be as good as you.”

“ I've been on the receiving end for years, I have a lot of experience.  Ok, just once more.  You've nearly got it.”

Sev let out a deep breath before contorting his features into his most intimidating scowl.  Harry had spent the last two weeks trying to turn his young friend into the perfect spy, starting with facial expressions.  Although Sev had mastered sneering years ago, Harry was finding it difficult to teach the boy to scowl properly.  He knew from the future that Sev had a whole catalogue of scowls used for a variety of occasions, but so far he had only mastered `mildly annoyed', `I'd move now if I were you' and `you really don't want to mess with me'.  He was having trouble with a few of the worst ones, such as `if I was allowed to maim you, I would' and `you are going to suffer a prolonged and painful death any second now'.  Sev had been working on the latter for four days, but he just couldn't get the hang of it.

Since Sev had been initiated into the Order, he had yet to attend a meeting.  His first was to be in a few days time, and he wanted to perfect his act by then.  Harry had explained that a good spy could hide their emotions and lie flawlessly.  While Sev's time in Slytherin had taught him a lot in these areas, it was not enough when dealing with Voldemort.  The Dark Lord would be able to see through most deceptions, so Harry had to prepare him for all eventualities.  This is where the training on facial expressions came in.  Sev had to learn to fake joy in the face of Muggle torture, but also disgust for anyone who Voldemort did not like.  Harry knew that these lessons could save him from giving himself away, and thus save his life, but at the same time he was also reluctant to go through with them.  The Sev he had grown to know in this time was so different to the greasy Potions Master who had taught him for four years.  He was more human, showing his emotions when he thought it appropriate, and more open and trusting.  He had a good sense of humour, and was hardly ever sarcastic.  It broke Harry's heart to have to turn such a sweet boy into the evil git he would be seen as in Harry's time.  What really got to Harry was the fact that he had hated the man when he was younger, but that he was the one that made him that way.

“ Sev, how about we move on to something else?”

“ Like what?”

“ Well, we've covered sneers, scowls and smirks.  How about we work on your mask of indifference?”

“ If we have to.  Are you sure this is necessary?”

“ Yes.  I know Shirley well, and he can see through most deceptions.  You need to be able to pull this off to survive.  I'm working on your weapons training, animagus and spell work; just call this another aspect of turning you into the perfect warrior.”

“ What if I don't want to be a warrior?  What if I just want to be a normal boy, grow up to have a respectable job and a family, and die happy?  What if that's what I want?”

“ I never said it was what you wanted.  But it is what you need.  Life has placed you in this position, and you have to make the best of it.  You may not like it, in fact you will probably hate it, but you have to accept it.  I mean, I would give everything to be normal, but that has never been an option for me either.  Just think, though, that life can only get better.  I want you to live to see that time.”

“ I know.  I'm sorry, Harry.  I just get frustrated, you know?”

“ I know.  I really do.”


January 27th was the first Order meeting after Sev's initiation.  None of the members had been informed except Dumbledore, not even Harry's friends.  They were going to be surprised when he turned up at the meeting that evening.  Harry had been working on Sev's spying skills since the start of term, and the younger boy was starting to get the hang of deception and manipulation.  While Harry was proud of his progress, he still hated what he had to do to his friend.

When eight o'clock came, Dumbledore sent the customary tingle through the Order tattoos to indicate a meeting was being called.  Sev was in Harry's room as usual, practicing his skills with a sword.  He had made terrific progress since the start of school, and Harry was confident he would be very good by the time he had to go to a new time.  Harry knew when the meeting was to be called, and when Sev stopped half way through his practice and clutched his arm, he simply smiled at his friend.

“ That's what it feels like when an Order meeting is called.  As you will notice, it feels quite different to Shirley's callings.”

“ It tickles!”

“ Yes, but at least it doesn't hurt.”

“ True.  What do we have to do now?”

“ Well, now we have to go to Domus Corvus Corax, the place you went to when I was in hospital.  There are three ways of getting there; by floo powder, by apparition or by portkey.  I don't have a portkey, and it's a long way to the other side of the anti-apparition wards, so we'll be taking floo powder.”

“ I thought you couldn't floo in and out of Hogwarts,” Sev said, one eyebrow raised.

“ How do you know that?”

“ I read it in `Hogwarts: a History'.”

“ Oh no, you're starting to sound like Hermione.”

“ Why?”

“ She's always quoting that book.”

“ Oh, right.  So, how will we be flooing there?”

“ Do you remember that room we were in when we were planning those pranks on the Marauders?”

“ Yeah, the one you said was hidden?”

“ That's the one.  The fireplace in that room is the only place you can get in and out of Hogwarts by fire.”

“ Isn't that a little insecure?”

“ Nope.  I've set the wards so that you can floo out to anywhere, but you can only floo in from Domus Corvus Corax.  As Corvus Corax is even more secure than Hogwarts, it's not going to be breached.”

“ Amazing.”

“ Thank you.  Now, we'd best go before we're late.”

Harry went over to the wall and created a door.  He then used wandless magic to alter the wards a little, allowing Sev to enter the room whenever he needed.  Once they were inside, they took a pinch of floo powder each and threw it in the fire, turning it green.  Stepping inside one at a time, they called out their destination and disappeared into the floo network.


Dumbledore had called a full meeting this time.  Harry could tell as soon as he walked in the door.  For normal meetings, only the most senior members were called, and they then passed on the appropriate information to those who needed to know it.  This prevented too many secrets from being known by too many people.  Different people were called under different circumstances, for instance chief researchers played no part in battles.  However, as soon as Harry saw how many people were there, he knew it was to be a meeting for all members.  It didn't happen very often, only when something important happened.  When he and Sev took their places at the table, there were already over three hundred people in the ball room.  Sev looked a little overwhelmed, but Harry simply rested a soothing hand on his shoulder and gave it a comforting squeeze.  He knew it would be daunting for his young friend, but at the same time knew that his inner Slytherin would let him adapt fairly quickly to the situation he found himself in.

~Calm down, Sev.  Don't look so nervous.  It'll be alright.  The Order members are all good people, and they will accept you no matter what.  We have all sorts here, including vampires, werewolves and centaurs.  A young Slytherin forced to be a Death Eater won't bother them~

~But what if they judge me…~

~I could say the same thing.  I'm a little different to the last time they saw me.  Don't worry, it'll be alright.  I need you calm so you can show off your skills.  They'll expect you to prove you can cope in front of Shirley, so there will be a test~

~TEST!  You never said anything about a test!~

Harry could feel the rising panic in his young friend and sent waves of calming energy through the mental link.  Just as the boy was starting to calm down, Harry spotted someone walking through the door who he really wanted to speak to.  Quickly telling Sev to stay put, Harry bounded across the room, a large grin on his face.

“ Gaerwyn!  Long time no see!”

The elf whirled around at the sound of her own language and smiled at her young friend.  Opening her arms, she gave him a big hug, which he returned gratefully.  When she pulled away, Harry could see a twinkle in her eyes.

“ Hello, Harry.  It's been a long time.  How have you been?”

“ Not too bad.  Apart from the fact that I'm part vampire now, thanks to an accident at the last battle.”

“ Oh, Harry, I'm so sorry.  You must feel awful.”

“ I do, but I'm getting over it.  I had a chat with a friend of mine who's a werewolf, and he talked some sense into me.  I'm still upset, and fighting off the depression I was in, but I'm putting on a brave face.  I have to put it behind me and get on with my life.  So, how have you been, Great-grandmother?”

“ I've been fine, Harry.  What's this about a great-grandmother?”

“ You're my great-grandmother, didn't you know?”

“ No, I didn't.  How?”

“ James Potter's my father, and his mother is Minh.”

“ Of course!  It never occurred to me before.  Well, this is wonderful!  Wait until I tell Lolide.”

“ Will she be coming to the meeting?”

“ Yes, she's just talking to Poppy Pomfrey about some new medicine she came up with.  Something that grows back bones.  Anyway, do you know what this meeting is about?”

“ Well, I know it will be a general update for everyone, and the introduction of a new member.”

“ Surely we don't need a full meeting for the introduction of a new member.”

“ This one we do.  He's a friend of mine, a Slytherin, which is the House I'm in this time.  Over the Christmas holidays his father dragged him to a Death Eater meeting and had him initiated.  The problem was, Sev didn't want to follow Voldemort.  So I suggested he become our new spy.”

“ And how old is this boy?”

“ Fifteen.”

“ Fifteen!  You expect a fifteen year old boy to be the Order's spy.”

“ Yes, I do.  I've been training him myself, and I think he will do well.  In fact, I know he will.  In my own time he was a spy, and a damned good one at that.”

“ Well, I trust you, Harry.”

“ Would you like to meet him?”

“ Yes, I would.  Where is he?”

“ I'll take you to him.  Just be sure not to tell him I'm a Potter.  Or from the future.  I haven't told him, and I think it would be best if he didn't find out.”

“ Why's that?”

“ Well, he and your grandson don't exactly get along…”

“ I see.  Well, I won't spill your secret.”

“ Thank you, Gaer.”

The pair headed over to where Sev was sitting, fidgeting in his seat.  A few Order members were looking at him curiously, as he was the youngest person there, but no-one said anything.  When he spotted Harry coming over, he looked a little relieved, but when he got his eye on Gaerwyn and noticed her pointed ears, his eyes went wide.

“ Hey, Sev, I'd like you to meet a dear friend of mine.  This is Gaerwyn.  Gaer, this is Severus Snape.”

“ It's a pleasure to meet you, Severus,” Gaerwyn said in her lilting accent, holding out a hand to the young Slytherin.  Sev took it tentatively and kissed it, bowing his head slightly.

“ The pleasure is all mine, I'm sure.”

“ Oh, what a well mannered young man.  You could teach my daughter a few things, I assure you.  She was never very good at etiquette.  She never had the time for it.  So, I hear you are a friend of Harry's.”

“ Yes, he's in my House at Hogwarts.  He's my friend and protector, as well as my mentor.”

Harry blushed as Gaerwyn gave him an appraising look.

“ Yes, that certainly sounds like my Harry.  He's always been like that.  Has a heart of gold, that one.  You are fortunate to have him teaching you, as he has a vast amount of knowledge and training.  Your job as a spy will be made easier if you are under his tuition.”

Sev looked over to his blushing friend and smiled.  He knew he was lucky to have Harry helping him, and saving him from his father.  He voiced this to the elf.  Gaerwyn gave him a penetrating look.

“ Am I right in assuming your father is Satanus Snape?”

“ Yes, you are ma'am.”

“ I remember my daughter telling me stories of him, and his friend Caligula Malfoy.  Am I right in assuming the Malfoy boy now has a son.”

“ Yes, his name is Lucius.  He's two years older than me, and has been a Death Eater for a while.  There's a sort of rivalry between he and Harry.  It's quite amusing to watch, actually.”

“ I'm sure it is.”

At that moment, Dumbledore cleared his throat to get everyone's attention, and the Order members fell silent and all took their seats.  Once the over four hundred people were sat at the enlarged table, Dumbledore began.

“ It is nice to once again see the faces of the full Order spread out before me.  It has been too long since our last gathering, and I had not realised how much our numbers have swelled.  I have called you all here today to welcome our latest Order member, a young man who has offered his services in defiance of his father, who is one of Voldemort's most trusted Death Eaters.  Please welcome Severus Snape.”

Sev was shocked when the whole Order started to applaud him loudly.  Looking around, he saw a sea of smiling and accepting faces, something he had honestly not been expecting.  When his eyes landed on Ron, Ginny and Hermione, who had arrived with the last group, he saw that they were a little surprised to see him there.  Harry obviously hadn't told them about his troubles.  Looking at his friend next to him, he smiled in gratitude.

~I told you there wouldn't be a problem~ Harry sent to him.

~I'm sorry for doubting you.  I see you didn't tell your friends~

~It never came up.  Anyway, it's your business, not theirs, and I didn't see the need in sharing it before it was necessary~

By this time the din was subsiding and Dumbledore continued with his speech.

“ Young Mister Snape was marked as one of Voldemort's followers over the Christmas holidays, completely against his wishes.  His friend and Housemate, Harry, convinced him to be our spy in the Dark Lord's ranks, and I have called this meeting so we can test his skills in this area.  Harry has been training him since he started his sixth year in September, and over the last two weeks has been honing his skills in deception and manipulation.  Skills which will be vital if he is to act as a Death Eater, while remaining on the side of the Order.  He could potentially provide us with information that can help us to save many lives in the years to come.  We will now collectively test his competence before reaching a final decision on his subsequent role in our organisation.”

With a wave of his hand, the table disappeared and the Order members stood up.  Moments later, their chairs vanished as well, leaving everyone standing in the ball room, waiting for the headmaster to do something.  Sev was starting to get a little worried, as he didn't know what was going on.


~Yes, Sev?~

~What's going on?~

~You are about to be tested~

~Tested how?~

~You'll see.  Dumbledore will explain~

The ball room suddenly turned quite dark, and Dumbledore's voice came from the shadows.

“ Severus Snape, you have agreed to be our spy in Voldemort's ranks.  You will now experience an example of the situations you may be asked to face, and you will be graded on your reactions.  If you perform in a satisfactory manner, you will be allowed to penetrate the enemy's ranks.  If you fail to perform up to the standard we require, you will be asked to remain at Hogwarts until you have mastered the skills you need.  Do you understand?”

“ I think so…”

“ Yes or no, Mr. Snape.”

“ Yes.”

“ Very well.  We shall begin.”

What little light disappeared from the room, and Harry created a mental link with the headmaster.

~Now what, sir?~

~We test him.  Would you like to do the honours?  I believe you have the most experience with him, and would therefore be able to best replicate his behaviour~

~If you insist…~

Harry started waving his hand about, changing the appearance of the room and its occupants.  He could hear Sev starting to breathe a little faster than was normal as he started to panic.  With one last gesture, a faint light appeared above the crowd, and Sev's eyes widened as he realised what he was facing.  Looking around, he could see hundreds of white masked faces staring out of black hoods.  The room was different, looking more like a dungeon, with little light and moss covered walls.  Where the stage had been stood a large stone throne, upon which sat a terrifying figure.  Glowing red eyes looked out of a human face, different from that of the young boy, but not quite as snake-like as in the future.  In front of Sev sat the malevolent figure of Lord Voldemort.  The young Slytherin started to back up before realising this must be his test.  They must have recreated a Death Eater meeting to see how I would cope, he thought.  Setting his mask of indifference upon his face, he walked up to the figure and dropped to his knees, before kissing the hem of the emerald green robe.  Remaining in that position, he awaited further instructions.

“ Ah, Severus, so you have joined us.  Tell me, what do you know of the Order of the Phoenix?”

“ Nothing, my Lord.”

“ Surely you know something.  Everyone has heard of it.  Do you presume to lie to me, Snape?”

“ No, my Lord.  All I know is that it is led by the Muggle loving fool Dumbledore, and opposes your rule.”

“ I see.  Now, Severusssss, I have heard some very interesting news.”

“ Yes, my Lord?”

“ One of my spies in Hogwarts claims you are not completely loyal.”

“ I am loyal, my Lord.”

“ Do you question my spy?  Do you question me?”

“ No, my Lord.”

“ If you are not questioning my spy, then you are agreeing that you are not loyal.”

“ I am loyal, my Lord.  May I ask what your spy has seen to make you question me?”

“ He claims you are friends with one who opposes me.  And friends with a Mudblood.  Is this true?”

“ Yes my Lord, but I can explain.”

“ Do so, Severus, and you had better have a good reason.”

“ I do my Lord.”

“ Well?  I am losing my patience.”

“ I befriended them to gather inside information.”

“ Go on.”

“ They are close to Dumbledore.  I could gather useful information, my Lord.”

“ I see.  Did I ask you to do this?”

“ No, my Lord.”

“ Then why are you doing it?”

“ I wish only to please you, my Lord.”

“ Look at me, Severus.”

Sev lifted his head and stared into the disturbing red eyes.  He had forgotten long ago that this was not real, and was completely immersed in the situation.  At this point, the figure before him was indistinguishable from the real Dark Lord.  He shuddered slightly, but schooled his features to look indifferent.  After a few moments, Voldemort grinned.

“ Would you like to join me, Severus?  I am planning some Muggle torture, would you like to help?”

Sev shuddered a little but pasted an anticipating smirk on his face.

“ If it pleases you, my Lord.”

“ Very well.  Bring in the prisoner,” the figure said to the nearest black clad figure.  Moments later, a struggling woman was dragged into the room, kicking and screaming.  Voldemort grinned and looked to Severus.

“ You may go first.  Curse her.”

“ Yes my Lord,” Sev said, his face once again blank.  Looking into the terrified eyes of the woman, he steeled himself before hefting his wand.

“ With what would you like me to curse her, my Lord?”

“ The Cruciatus, of course.”

Sev flourished his wand, and yelled out the damning word.

“ Crucio!”

The woman writhed in pain, screaming loudly.  Sev had to suppress a wince, but pasted a look of glee on his face as the woman was tortured by his hand.  Eventually, he lifted the curse and turned to Voldemort, bowing low.

“ Have I pleased you, my Lord?”

“ Did I tell you to stop?”

“ No, my Lord.”

“ You will pay for your insolence.  Crucio!”

As the curse hit, Sev fell to the floor and writhed, pretending he was in pain.  He felt only a tickling sensation, due to the necklace Harry had given him, but he knew he would have to pretend to be in pain.  Once the curse was lifted, he lay panting for a few minutes before crawling to his feet and once more kissing the green robe hem.  Voldemort let out a loud cackle, before the lighting returned to normal and Sev looked up from his place on the floor.  Everything was back to normal, and he looked to the person standing before him and met the grinning face of Harry.

“ Well done, Sev.  You did great.”

“ Harry?  That was you?!”

“ Yup!  How did I do?”

“ That was…incredible.  After a few minutes I thought I was at a real meeting.”

“ That was the point.  We had to make it convincing, otherwise it would hardly be a test.”

“ What about that person I hit with the Cruciatus.  Is she alright?  I didn't want to hurt anyone…”

~She's fine.  It was Hermione you cursed, and she has an immunity necklace, so she didn't get hurt~ Harry answered mentally, so as not to give away the presence of the necklace to Dumbledore, who was listening to the exchange.  Sev simply nodded to him.  Once the boy had stood and looked at the rest of the Order, Dumbledore stepped forward.

“ Well, that was a most impressive display, my boy.  I must admit, Harry did such a good job that I was almost convinced myself.  You reacted admirably, Severus, especially in answering the question about your loyalty.  Whatever answer you were to give would have angered the real Voldemort, but you handled it perfectly.  You were also very convincing in torturing someone, even though I know you didn't want to.  I think it is safe to say that the Order has its new spy.”

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