Want to give Hermione a run for her money in the know-it-all field? Simply play the quiz by commenting on this post with your answers at any time over the weekend. All comments with answers will be screened until the answer sheet is posted on Monday morning EDT. On Monday, all quizzlings with the correct answers will receive a pretty banner to prove their quiz prowess. Ready? Set? Play!
Match the quotes to the story titles. There are no red herrings this time, so the process of elimination is your friend!
The Witch’s Snare by lady_rhian
Across the Anvil by subversa
Lost Cause by irishredlass
New Beginnings by madeleone
Come Back To Me by savine_snape WIP
A Beach in Ireland by bambu345
Pandora's Box by Aoibheann aka bittersweetme64 WIP
Run to the Water by lady_rhian
The Buried Life by Kalina Lea
The Dark Rose by a_war_goddess
1. A chance meeting more than five years after she had left the hallowed halls of Hogwarts Castle had changed all that.
Severus Snape had been the last man she expected to run into in the back alleys of wizarding Ireland. Working as a liaison between wizarding and Muggle societies, Hermione had traveled through Europe, educating Muggle families when the time was appropriate for their children to enter school, but she had never missed a chance to hit the local used bookshops when she was traveling. That is how she had literally run into her old professor as she walked the street, her nose lost in a book. He had been exiting the local Apothecary.
“P… Professor…” Hermione had stammered when she’d recognized the haggard visage of her former professor. The years had apparently not been kind to him. In fact, he’d appeared more drawn than he had in the last days of the final battle.
But then she was not one to talk. A failed romance with Ron, too much indulgence in comfort foods, and over-dedication to her work had drastically changed Hermione’s appearance as well. She had gained at least a stone, had blemishes on her face, and only really put an effort into her appearance when she was to meet new students and their parents.
“Miss Granger,” he had curtly replied as he’d rushed off in the other direction before she could engage him in conversation.
For weeks after the chance meeting in Ireland, Hermione had found herself wondering about Professor Snape.
2. As she sliced, diced, wrapped and rolled, her thoughts floated along the stream of consciousness until, like a fishing bobber snagged by a hungry trout, it dipped into the memory of how she had acquired a cottage in Ireland at the tender age of nineteen (and then some, if one took the Time Turner into account). Her first assignment had brought her to Strandhill, with its golden beach and wide sand dunes. She had been sent to persuade the Cloverhills to allow their daughter, Kathleen, to attend Hogwarts that autumn.
It had taken two weeks to convince the family to trust their darling girl to a world they could not inhabit, and during that time, Hermione discovered the beauty of Ireland’s coast. Staying at the local hotel, she had walked along the wide expanse of beachfront every day. The sounds of pounding surf, the mineral tang of salt spray, the delicate mist coating hair, face, and clothing had been irresistible. Instinctively, she had known her bruised soul and broken heart could heal in such a place, and there were times she couldn’t tell whether it was mist or tears wetting her cheeks.
Hermione had discovered the cottage on one of her rambles. Nestled on the outskirts of the village, it was in sight of the sea, and its front garden was neglected and weedy. It had appealed to her as something of a kindred spirit, as she, too, felt neglected and weedy. T he stipends from her Order of Merlin, First Class, and the rarely bestowed Medallion of Fidelity, for courage in the face of great adversity, allowed Hermione to acquire the cottage on a for-lease-option-to-buy. She hadn’t needed to tap into the nest egg from her parents.
Within days of signing the lease, Hermione had Scourgified the interior of the cottage, porch to hearth and rafters to cellar. The weekend she moved her few belongings into her new home Harry had brought the traditional loaf of bread, jar of salt, and hazel & birch besom as housewarming gifts. Equally welcome, at the time, were Ginny’s regrets claiming a prior commitment.
3. ‘Do you see it?’ he asked, his lips now ghosting over the shell of her ear.
Shaking her head to dislodge his mouth from her skin, she stared down the hill into a hollow. ‘There’s a cottage down there,’ she answered.
‘My cottage,’ he corrected her.
She threw his arms away from her and moved away from him. ‘Are we in Ireland?’
‘Yes, Parker, my cottage is in Ireland,’ he agreed. ‘Come with me—let me show it to you.’
‘I’ll light the fire,’ he promised, ‘and brew tea. And I will behave.’
She snorted her disbelief at his last statement, but the lure of the fire and the hot tea was irresistible, and she could not Disapparate back to Gretna Green without her wand.
‘Take me back to the hotel,’ she countered. She didn’t think he would take her back—after all, a man unscrupulous enough to kidnap a bride from a pre-wedding party would have no qualms about denying such a request—but she felt there was no harm in asking.
‘After you hear me out, Parker—not before.’ He stepped up to her and gestured to the cottage.
4. She decided the only way she was going to be able to work on her writing was to get away from it all. She had the perfect excuse to want some time to herself after the fiasco with Theo, and she had the perfect place to go.
She had inherited a cottage in Ireland from her great-aunt Maeve, her father's aunt. Maeve had sadly lost her sweetheart in WWII and never married. She had left everything to Hermione as her only heir.
Hermione hadn't had a chance to visit since Maeve's death. Her job had kept her too busy, plus Theo had made it clear he had no desire to lower himself to visit some Muggle hovel in the middle of nowhere—much less stay there. Hermione had never found the time to get away on her own whilst she'd been tied to him. But now those ties were well and truly broken, shattered in fact, and she had the freedom to go wherever she chose.
Having shrunk her luggage and supplies and stowed them in her beaded bag, she Apparated to the back garden of the stone cottage she remembered so well. It was fairly isolated, a bit of a hike from the village and no neighbors in sight, so she had no worries of being spotted by a stray Muggle.
With the key in hand, Hermione felt the first bit of real excitement she'd felt in a good long while. Turning the key proved difficult; the lock hadn't been used in quite some time and was perhaps a bit rusty. At first unsure what to do, Hermione suddenly burst out laughing. Was she a witch or what? “Alohomora.”
The door opened with a flick of her wand. Sometimes, it was hard to forgo the habits of her childhood.
The cottage was just as she remembered; it was small, but it felt cozy rather than cramped.
5. Hermione sat eating her breakfast in the kitchen of Minerva’s holiday cottage. They had been in Glendalough, Ireland, for almost three weeks and were due to return to Hogwarts in a couple of days’ time. Despite her plans to contemplate her future, she had been kept busy by Minerva.
They had spent a lovely afternoon just outside Avoca, at the Meeting of the Waters, and Hermione had been intrigued when Minerva had informed her that the Muggle poet, Thomas Moore, was said to have written his Irish melody the Meeting of the Waters while he sat upon the rustic seat where Hermione was sitting. They had also visited Russborough House, which Hermione had marvelled at. She had enthused about the Palladian style of the house, commenting that the style was far superior to that of the Malfoys’ family home.
“So, my dear, what have you planned for today?” Minerva asked as she sat down at the breakfast table.
“I was just contemplating Apparating to Avoca again. Maybe I’ll visit the pub, what was it called?”
“The Meeting, I believe, dear.”
“Yes, that’s it. I was going to sit and have a think again and then maybe get a spot of lunch.”
“That sounds like an excellent idea. I’m sure you don’t need me to go with you.” Minerva smiled at the younger woman warmly.
6. At the end of a dingy street in south Dublin, tucked betwixt an opium den and an erotic bookstore, there lay a coffeehouse of ill repute. Not surprising, given its location.
But why, one may ask, had a coffeehouse developed ill repute?
Simple: it attracted the clientele of the surrounding businesses.
It was also run by three rather eccentric witches. Annie, Lula, and Elise had met on the train to Hogwarts one sunny day, an egregiously optimistic day as only eleven year olds can have. They had all, however, been sorted into Slytherin, and thus were the early bonds of friendship formed. They had become especially close after expressing mutual admiration for the handsome portrait of Slytherin’s most notorious Head of House, a still portrait situated in the Common Room. It was lifeless, a fact which fueled the talk that the purportedly good Severus Snape was indeed not dead, as was widely believed.
The girls enjoyed a time of relative peace and prosperity at Hogwarts, having entered the year following the end of the Second War.
7. Brian Evans awoke on a dreary Irish morning. He rolled over and checked the time on the bedside clock, then got out of bed, being careful not to awaken the woman next to him. It was not courtesy that made him quiet, it was the desire not to have to deal with her constant chattering. Checking the early morning weather by looking out the window, Brian was pleased to discover that it would be a good morning for fishing. He grabbed his clothing and slunk into the bathroom, rolling his eyes at the pink frilly shower curtain and feminine accoutrements. Tapping the medicine cupboard three times and whispering a few words, he was hardly surprised when the back shimmered and seemed to disappear. Reaching inside, he grabbed a pale wand of wood and a small bag. He waved his hand over the cupboard and it became solid again. He got dressed, waved the wand over himself, and muttered a few more words, quickly cleaning himself. He looked in the mirror and scowled.
Without a goodbye, he exited the bedroom and was not pleased to discover himself being followed by a mewling cat. Pointing the wand at the cat, he growled out “Silencio,” effectively shutting up the cat. He exited the small cottage that led to the high street of Dooagh and made his way to the waterfront. Money was running out and he needed to replenish it. He nodded at a small group of fishermen before getting into his own small boat and casting off for the day. Brian rarely fished with anyone. He was a solitary man who preferred to do things alone and fishing was no exception.
Others in the town of Dooagh found Brian Evans to be a bit of an enigma. He arrived there several years ago, presumably from England, though he never discussed his past with anyone. He set up a small cottage for himself, fished during the summer months, and sold homeopathic medicines year round. His herbal remedies were the best in Ireland, it was claimed.
8. It wasn't a holiday, Snape thought to himself as he Apparated into a hidden wing of the Belfast International Airport. The customs officer barely flicked him a glance as she reviewed his documents and scanned his wand before waving him tiredly along. The novelty of his reception, when usually he was greeted with suspicious stares and whispers throughout most of wizarding England, shored into his constant reiteration: it wasn't a holiday. He'd taken a two week leave of absence from Hogwarts to come here, but it was the summer, the curriculum wasn't suffering and nobody had objected. And he'd been quite clear about his reasons when he'd turned in his request like a supplicant school boy to the Headmistress.
It wasn't a holiday. He'd been contacted for work, perfectly legitimate, he'd even provided contact information for the man who'd requested his presence, Gerald O'Toole. It was for Potions, he'd explained carefully under McGonagall's firm gaze, nothing to do with the Dark Arts at all. He'd been asked over to investigate the coagulation properties of the butterwort's summer rosette, and offered a room by his Irish colleague while they experimented. As he expounded upon the methods of their investigation, McGonagall had visibly relaxed, though her expression remained stern. Used to this, Snape continued with his lecture until he saw a quill flick up out of the Headmistress's desk.
"Very well, Severus. You have my permission." A sharp sniff came from his old cohort and lost friend. "Make sure you do not extend your holiday. You are needed back before the beginning of the next term."
The quill moved to sign his travel release visa. Probation, the Ministry called it. Prison without government cost, Snape felt more likely.
9. "Ugh," she said, glancing at the fetid mixture with a grimace of distaste as she added the ingredient. "I don’t envy Madam Pomfrey having to keep up with this one while we’re gone. Speaking of which, I’m not sure I understand exactly where we’re going."
"It’s unplottable. A forest, not unlike our Forbidden Forest here at Hogwarts. Neilus Finbar had a house there."
"In the middle of a dark forest?"
"Not exactly. More to the Western side."
"So we’re going to…what? Camp? In the middle of an unplottable forest?"
"No. We’re going to use Dumbledore’s vacation cottage."
Because she was watching carefully, she saw his mouth slide briefly out of control and realized that he was, if not quite teasing her, at least entertaining himself by doling out one bizarre piece of information after another. "Vacation cottage," she repeated. "Dumbledore just conveniently happens to have a vacation cottage around the corner from Professor Finbar’s house in the middle of a dark forest. How is it that they haven’t run into one another while fleeing rampaging beasts?"
He snorted at that. "Dumbledore’s vacation cottage is wherever he wants it to be. Why would he want to vacation in the same place every year?"
"I see," she said, not really seeing at all. Even in the wizarding world, most people didn’t move whole houses around on a whim. "So he’s putting the cottage somewhere in this forest in the hopes that we can find evidence that Finbar is still alive?"
10. It really was a lovely view. Hermione sat in the seventh row of chairs overlooking a sunset over Glandore Harbour waiting for the ceremony to begin, and she decided that this was the most peaceful she'd felt all day.
Until Snape sat down next to her.
'Okay,' she said as his knee brushed hers. 'This stops now.'
'So you were scolded, too.'
Hermione stuck her hand out and looked him square in the eye. 'Truce?'
He hesitated, staring at her hand suspiciously.
'What?' she asked, a bit miffed. 'You won't burn if you touch me.'
'Might,' he murmured, and she felt heat where she hadn't in a long time, a heat that spread like wildfire as he shook her hand, holding on for perhaps a moment too long.
'Truce,' he said.
'Until the ceremony is over,' he said, and her stomach sank.