The Sugar Quill
Author: Malenkia (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: The Ones You Least Expect  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.


Professor Snape awoke with a start, and a splitting headache. He’d fallen asleep at his desk again and as he sat up, he pulled some of his notes off that had stuck to his face in the night. He stood and stretched, thinking about the potion he’d been working on lately and the last bit of testing that needed to be done. “Bloody mornings…” he mumbled as he made his way over to the bathroom, waving his wand at the coffee pot on the way past.

By the time he stepped from the shower, he could smell the aroma of his one Muggle weakness. He went and dressed, then filled his mug and returned to the bathroom mirror. His hair was sleek and shiny, not greasy at all. Nor were his teeth yellowed and off center as everyone thought. He looked into the mirror and saw a somewhat handsome man in his early thirties'. “We’ll, we can’t have that now can we?” He said to his reflection and sneered, then laughed.

“Mornin’ Gov’nr.” The mirror said as it cleaned the steam off itself.

“Yes…time for the transformation.” Snape replied and grabbed a bottle and dumped some of its contents in his hand. He rubbed his hands together and smeared them through his hair, pulling at the strands so that it got that limp and oily effect. As an afterthought, he slapped his face a little, too, as if putting on aftershave.

“Don’t forget your teeth, Gov’nr!” The mirror said as he turned away.

“Oh, yes…” he said and turned back. He waved his wand and looked in the mirror again. His teeth had become yellow and off center, just as everyone thought they were.

He went back out into his sitting area to finish his coffee, consoling himself with the thought that tomorrow was Saturday and he didn’t have to leave his rooms if he didn’t want to. He could just be himself and not have to put on the disguise and the act. Perhaps Minerva and Albus would join him for the afternoon. “Yes, a nice normal afternoon. That’s just what I need, I’ll pass them the word today," he said and put down his cup. He glanced at the calendar on his way out the door and stopped dead in his tracks. “No…that can’t be right.” he said and stepped back to take a closer look. “Oh bloody hell…” he said and his face sunk to new lows. The calendar read, in its bright and cheery spring colors, “April 1st.”

As he slowly and carefully made his way to the Great Hall, his sneer took on a whole new reason for being. Normally he would have been a week ahead on Protection Charms and potions that with a drop could reveal a practical joke disguised in a pretty package. He would normally be prepared and unworried. With all the late night work, he’d completely forgotten. He walked into the Great Hall and sat down, glancing at the students that had filed in for breakfast. His worry more than doubled when he saw them - the Weasley twins. “It’s going to be a very long day," he muttered.

“What was that Severus?” Minerva asked as she passed him the pumpkin juice.

He looked at her and said, “Do you know what day it is, Minerva?”

She looked at him, confused, until she read the look in eyes. “Oh dear, and I suppose you’d forgotten? Well, you’d better be on your guard. The Weasleys have been working very hard lately, too. Just get through the day, you only have one class until noon and then you can go hide," she said and patted his hand. He snatched it away and glowered at her. Normally it was part of the act; today he actually didn’t have to work at it.

There was a disruption at the Slytherin table and the laughter soon followed. Draco Malfoy’s three-minute egg had spent the last three minutes wandering around his plate yelling, “Wait! Wait! I’m not done yet!” Then it sprouted wings, flew into the air and cracked itself open on Goyle’s head. A spoon floated up and laid itself gently next to it, across his large flat forehead. The Weasley twins were grinning, obviously pleased with their own version of opening ceremonies. Snape could have sworn he heard Ron Weasley say, “Let the games begin.”

Albus was trying very hard not to laugh and was having some success, until Professor Hooch’s waffle began to eat the rest of the food next to it on the plate. Then he had a sudden fit of the giggles.

“Albus! Stop that right now!” Hooch said, “Really, is that any way for a Headmaster to act?”

“April fool, my dear Professor," he said and smiled. Her waffle let out a large belch and lay still.

Snape looked down the table and saw that the fruit platter had started a square dance and the bacon was challenging the sausage to a duel. He cleared his throat and stood. “I think I’ll pass on breakfast today, Minerva. Excuse me," he said and left the room.

“A cannibalism breakfast and line dancing fruit…wonder what Albus has planned for lunch?” Snape thought as he made his way to his classroom. He couldn’t truly be upset with the Headmaster. This was, after all, his favorite holiday. He almost walked right into his classroom, but caught himself at the threshold. He waved his wand and muttered a spell. A bucket of young flobberworms floated down and landed on the table just inside the door. It was soon joined with a couple of stunned pixies and a few dancing ingredients. He walked into the room and looked at the gathering on the table. “Amateurs…they could have been a bit more creative," he said and disenchanted the items. These must be the Fool’s Day offerings of Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. Fred and George Weasly wouldn’t waste their time on such simple pranks.

He sat down at his desk just as the bell rang. In a few moments, the games would begin, his only class of the day was Gryffindor and Slytherin. They filed into the room and took their seats. Some of them were still laughing about the escapades at breakfast. The bell rang and he sat there staring at them. The room fell silent instantly. He glared around the room, then stood and walked over to his podium.

“I will not tolerate any of your little plans in my classroom. Some of the other professors may allow you certain leeway on this day, some may even encourage it,” he said and rolled his eyes, thinking of Albus, “But don’t expect either from me. Any little tricks you may have planted I have already found. Open your books and begin the potion on page three hundred and fifty-seven. You have all been warned.” From the looks on their faces, he knew he’d succeeded in getting this group through the class with no nonsense.

He began his usual stalking around the room, just to add to the tension. It was a ploy that had always worked well in the past and he knew today it would not let him down. “Granger, chop that mandrake smaller, do you want it to crawl back out and spit potion at you later?” he said and glared at her.

She smiled at him sweetly and said, “Right away, Sir

He was a bit surprised at her response and chose to ignore it. He went around the room again and stopped in front of Ron and Harry. “Mr. Weasley…Mr. Potter…what is the third ingredient in your book?” he asked and leaned over them menacingly.

“Uh…barrel-root?” Ron ventured, and gulped.

“And what do you have there, Mr. Potter?” Snape asked again, using his most evil smile. Harry looked down at the jar on the table, and then looked back up at Ron quickly. “I’m waiting, Potter.” Snape said and leaned down until he was inches from the boy’s face. He could tell the spell on his teeth had taken a good effect today from the look on Harry’s face; it was mixture of disgust and fear.

“Arrowroot powder, Sir, Harry stammered.

“Arrowroot powder!” Snape said and stood. He walked to the front of the classroom and turned to the class, his black robes flowing behind him. “What do we use arrowroot powder for?” he asked. Hermione’s hand snapped up. Big surprise there, He thought, sarcastically, and looked for anyone else. As usual, no one else raised their hand. Another shock, he thought again, even more sarcastically than before. He sighed and waved his hand, “Go ahead, Granger.”

Arrowroot powder is used in cooking, Sir,” she said and smiled.

Why does she insist at smiling at me? he thought. The girl utterly confused him today.

“For cooking, class!” he said and took two long strides back to Harry and Ron, “If you two have a culinary career planned, why don’t you go join the house-elves in the kitchen?” he waved his wand at their cauldron. “Start over…twenty points from Gryffindor.” He said and smiled his evilest at them. He stood and went back to his desk and sat down.

The rest of the class went smoothly, until it was time to clean up. Neville Longbottom’s cauldron spouted legs and ran out the door when he cast his Cleaning Spell on it. Snape’s head dropped into his hands and he sighed in defeat. Then he snapped his head up and said, “Longbottom, you are the epitome of the April Fool. Go get the bloody thing and herd it back here before it starts offering free samples to the rest of the school!” Neville ran out the door, leaving his wand on the table. Snape shook his head in disbelief at the boy’s luck in life. “Granger…” he said and waved his hand. She smiled, again, grabbed Neville’s wand and ran after him. “Everyone else finish cleaning up!” he said and looked through some papers on his desk.

There was a parchment there he hadn’t noticed. It had the school seal on it, from Albus’s office. He turned it over in his hands and decided it was safe enough to open. He was about to when Hermione and Neville returned, the cauldron between them walking as fast as the little legs it sprouted could go. Hermione waved her wand at it and the legs disappeared, it cleaned itself out and went back to its place on the shelf.

She really is a good student, he thought, wishing he could encourage her more. But it was for her own good that he acted like he disliked her. He only hoped it didn’t effect her too much. He looked back to the parchment and opened the seal, letting it unroll in his hand. There was nothing on it. He flipped it over and back again, but it was totally blank. He rolled his eyes and tossed it onto the desk, thinking it must a joke or something from Albus. It stuck to his hand. He pulled it off with the other and tried to toss it aside again, but it stuck to that hand as well. He realized he’d fallen for a prank and slapped his forehead.

Oh damn... he thought too late. Sure enough, it had stuck to his head.

The class was looking at him in disbelief. Ron Weasley looked very close to exploding if he didn’t laugh soon and Granger just kept on smiling. He tried to pull the paper from his forehead, but only got it to slide across to the other side. And now, both hands were stuck. Luckily the bell rang. “What are you all waiting for?! Get out!” he yelled and they ran from the room. As soon as the majority of the class got in the hallway, he heard them laughing like he’d never heard them before. He also heard someone fall down laughing and start hitting the floor. He was sure it had to be Ron Weasley.

“Damn Weasleys! How the hell did they sneak it past me?” he said and pulled on the parchment. Some of it pulled away, then he notice it was stretching out like taffy. What the bugger did they invent now? he thought and tried to pull the strand away in once piece. The more he fought, the more he became covered in the sticky mess. Within a few moments, he looked like a walking wad of chewed gum. Papers had gotten pulled into the mess from his desk, his wand was wrapped into it and even a plant from the window had joined his prison of goop. He had to get help; there was no way he could get out of this himself. He was about to try for the Floo Powder to call Albus or Minerva, when he heard a sound by the door.

He turned so the one eye that wasn’t stuck shut could see. It was Hermione Granger and she was smiling even bigger than before. “Granger? What do you want, can’t you see I’m busy!” he said, although in the condition he was in, he knew the effect was lost. He tried to turn more to face her and wound up his legs and fell over on the floor. “Bloody hell! What is this?!” he said, infuriated.

She walked over to him with her wand out and tapped his head where the original piece of parchment was still stuck to his head. He heard her mumble something, but since his ears were now full of the taffy-like stuff, he couldn't tell what it was.

Then it was gone. The parchment, the paper, everything was back in its place as though nothing had happened. Except that he was still lying on the floor, now looking up at Hermione in surprise and shock. "Miss Granger?" he said, quietly, as if realizing a secret. He sat up and she smiled very widely at him.

“Happy April Fool’s Day, Professor Snape," she said and turned away.

She was almost to the door when Snape said, “Miss Granger!” She stopped and turned slowly around. It was obvious she was expecting the punishment, but was prepared for it in exchange for the being the only one able to get to him on April Fool’s Day.

“Very ingenious, Miss Granger," he said and tried to scowl at her. But for once he couldn’t do it; instead he laughed. He couldn’t help it. “Twenty-five points to Gryffindor, thirty more if you don’t tell anyone you saw me laugh," he said and shooed her away. She quickly ran out the door before he could change his mind, but he could hear her laughing down the hall.

All this time he had worried about the Weasley twins. “It’s always the ones you least expect," he said and smiled as he left his classroom and locked the door behind him. As he walked past Minerva’s room, he stopped and stole a look around the corner into her classroom. She was just about to sit down at her desk. He grinned and waved his wand. When she sat, a loud noise came from her chair and she jumped back up. The class erupted in laughter as she held up an air-filled bag and waved it around, asking who dared put it on her chair.

As he walked down the hall, he began to imagine a lovely prank for lunch. “After all, no one would suspect Severus Snape of a practical joke,” he thought and smiled.


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