*~* Hats *~*
Madam Pomfrey was mighty understanding. She didn't ask too many questions about Montague. Though she did eye Lily suspiciously when the girl had said it was an accident. The school nurse was likely thinking of Parkinson's snake hair. While they were heading back to the Slytherin common room, Draco had explained about the snake hair. About the dueling club and the snake set upon Dawn. Connor's eyes were getting bigger and bigger. Dawn could talk to snakes? That was just fascinating... a little disturbing perhaps, but still interesting. And this Lily creature was dangerous.
But he sort of liked that about her.
"Come on!" Dawn said, grabbing Connor's hand.
Draco looked at her oddly. "Come on where?"
"Kitchen. We have to celebrate."
"That Connor can do magic."
"What?" A voice said from the shadows.
The four teens jumped and spun about. Spike sauntered out smoking a cigarette that Dawn promptly snagged and threw down. She ground it out with her school-issued mary jane.
"Hey! That's my last fag!"
"There's no smoking in the school, Spike."
Lily looked at Draco and mouthed the word 'fag' with a question on her face. Connor was looking a bit confused as well. Dawn noticed.
"It's Brit-speak for cigarette. I forget not everyone spent half their life with Giles."
"What are you four doing skulking about?" Spike asked, pulling a flask from his duster and taking a long swig.
Dawn snatched that as well.
She took a whiff of it. "Ick! Spike, why are you drinking?"
Spike shrugged and Dawn noticed he wobbled a bit. Draco shot forward and steadied him before the vampire fell over.
"Spike?" Dawn asked in a soft voice. "What's wrong?"
Spike produced a bottle from his duster and just about drained that before Dawn could it away.
"He doesn't know how lucky he is, the poofter."
" 'E 'as the slayer's 'eart, a merry band of idiots to follow 'is lead blindly, and 'im." Spike gestured to Connor. "Peaches 'as 'imself a son. I can walk in the day cos of some magical bauble, but I think I'd rather 'ave myself a little me."
"You do." Lily said, nodding at Draco.
Spike laughed. "Thanks, chameleon." He leaned forward and kissed Lily.... on the lips.
"Whoa! Hey, Spike. Lookout." Dawn said as she pulled him back.
"Always wanted to kiss Red. She's bitable. That means you are too, streaks."
Lily was just staring at him in shock. "Thanks... I think."
There was a noise at the end of the corridor. Then a meow.
"Filch." Draco hissed.
"We can't let Spike get caught drinking." Dawn hissed back.
Lily leaned in. "WE can't get caught out after curfew."
Draco and Dawn grabbed Spike. Luckily they were quite close to a closet. Lily herded Connor towards it. She reached around him and turned the knob. As the door opened, Draco shoved everyone in rather quickly. Connor ended up with his back to the wall and a bunch of mops and brooms next to him on one side. The other side was crowded by a shelf full of cleaning supplies and rolls of toilet paper. Suddenly Lily's face smacked into his chest. Spike's back was to her back, and Dawn and Draco were crammed in with their heads on the vampire's shoulders. The five of them barely fit in the closet. Draco pulled the door closed and muttered a charm to lock it with a wave of his wand.
Lily pressed the flat of her hand to Connor's chest, trying to get some space between the two of them. He sucked in air.
She twisted her head up and peered into his shadowed face. "What?"
He just shook his head 'no'.
Lily grabbed his nipple trough his shirt and gave it a hard twist. Connor ground his teeth so hard he thought he might shatter them. He closed his eyes as his breath came in sharp bursts. She just didn't know. He was hell-bound for certain. He could not stop this sin of lust whenever she got near. And the twisting? God help him, he loved it. The roughness of her at times just fueled him. This was wrong. Very wrong. His forehead broke out in little droplets of sweat.
Lily was staring at the boy in awe. He liked the pain. It turned him on a little. She shifted her weight against him, ok, a lot. It made sense. The hitting with Hermione earlier. He'd had an oddly blissful look on his face during it.
For some reason the thought of her not having to be careful was appealing. Lily clamped her hand on his shoulder and dug her fingernails in. Connor hissed through his teeth. Somehow his hands found her hips in the small space. He gripped her so tightly, Lily was certain she'd be bruised later. She inched up slowly.
Connor thought she was headed for his mouth. She was not. Her lips attached themselves to his pulsing jugular, and she started sucking at the skin there. Connor let out a low moan.
"Oy. What are you two doing back there?" Spike said loudly.
"Spike." Dawn hissed as she tried to cover up his mouth with her hand.
Spike was whipping his head around to avoid her hand.
"We're trapped! Help!" He laughed maniacally.
"Dammit, Spike!" Dawn hissed.
Footsteps sounded outside the door.
"You... drunken... git." Draco hissed through his teeth.
The door was flung open, but not by Filch, as they had expected, but by Snape.
"Well. What have we here?"
They would have answered... but Spike took that time to throw up all down the front of Snape's black robes.
They were all sitting in the room that connected Snape's to Willow's.
"What were you all thinking?" Willow hissed as she cleaned up Spike, who was moaning as if he were dying.
He let out a horrible juicy burp and moaned again.
"That's what you get, mister." Willow snapped as she swiped Spike's unnaturally clammy forehead with a wet cloth. "Getting drunk just to-"
"Leave him alone." Dawn had the oddest look on her face, like she was about to cry.
Draco sighed and looked at the floor. He knew what Dawn was thinking about. He was remembering what Spike had said about wanting a child. Weird to think of it actually. Spike didn't strike Draco as the fathering sort. He was a bit rough around the edges.
"What?" Willow said looking at Dawn.
Lily had moved closer to her and wrapped an arm around the brunette. Draco had also moved in. Even Connor inched up behind Lily. They were all looking at Spike with furrowed brows.
"All right." Willow snapped. "What's going on?"
No one said anything. Spike was staring at Dawn. She was staring back. She pursed her lips and shook her head as if to say that she'd never betray him.
"Dawnie? Lily? Draco?"
None of them were speaking.
Willow rose slowly. "What is this? You three are scaring me. What's going on?"
"We can not say." Connor whispered.
Willow eyes shot to him. "What? What happened? What do you mean you can not say? Can't? No, won't. You'll tell me what in the hell is going on here because I'm a teacher, and you were out after curfew."
Dawn shook her head 'no'. Spike was watching her with wide eyes.
"There will be some detentions if I don't get an explanation."
It was then that Snape entered the room, having changed out of his dirty robes.
Lily looked up at Willow. "Give us detention then."
"Fine!" Willow snapped. "Detention! Two weeks... with Filch! And fifty points from Slytherin... each!"
"What is this?" Snape asked coolly.
"Red, don't. Not for them protectin' me. Bit, just tell 'er. Don't worry 'bout it."
"No." Dawn said in a voice that cracked with tears. She knew how Spike was about Angel. She wouldn't say a thing about the fit of jealousy he'd indulged in tonight.
"Bit, I love you right now." He looked at Draco. "And you really ARE me. Loyal to a bloody fault." He turned to Lily. "And you are showing some real fire... as you should." Lastly, he looked at Connor. "I wouldn't have tried to win you over... I would have forced you back. You would have hated me more... at first."
"Spike, don't." Dawn said. "You don't have to."
"Can't let you get into trouble for me, Bit." He looked at Willow. "Jealous of the poof. How pathetic, right?"
Dawn let out a little sob. She did not want him to have to do this. It was breaking her heart. Draco pulled her into his side. His face was as set as Dawn had ever seen it.
"Wh-what?" Willow whispered. She was very much starting to feel like a heel.
"I was jealous, Red. I couldn't stand it. Why does he always get the things I can never 'ave?"
Willow's face contorted. It was the most 'human' and real he had ever been. "I... I'm sorry."
"I don't want your pity."
"No... I don't feel sorry for you."
He arched his eyebrow. "I'm sorry that you can't see what you DO have around here."
"Is this the 'It's a Wonderful Unlife' speech? Because if it is, please spare me."
Willow pulled him into a hug.
"Oh bloody hell."
"Rosenberg, I am going to have to insist that you unhand the vampire."
"I am going to have to agree with Dracula's twin, Red. Leave off. I don't fancy your shag toy trying to kill me."
"Uncle Spike!" Draco couldn't decide if it was his eyes or his ears he wanted to cover.
Connor was looking at him oddly. "Uncle?"
Connor looked at Spike. "Can I refer to you that way as well?" He knew it would irritate his father.
Spike eyed him curiously. "All right."
Willow looked between them as she leaned away from her hug. She suddenly got it in a way she never had before. Spike wanted a Connor.
She would have never figured Spike for that.
"I should get you all back to where you're supposed to..." She stopped suddenly. She was staring at Connor. There was something in his aura that had not been there before. "You did magic."
The four teenagers jumped.
Snape blinked. "What? He's not a muggle?"
"Don't call me a muggle." Connor snapped.
Lily put a hand on Connor's arm.
"Don't tell my dad."
Willow looked torn.
"All right... for now, but you have to tell him, Connor."
"I'll return the blonde em-bombed shell to his quarters." Snape said. "If you'll see the rebellious teens to theirs."
"But-"" Dawn started.
"No arguing, Miss Summers. No points taken. No detentions with Filch."
Willow glared at him.
"They weren't doing anything so wrong."
Draco looked at Lily and Dawn. They both had the same look on their faces. Who WAS this guy? Because their head of house was not the type to say someone had not been so wrong.
"You feelin' ok?" Dawn asked him.
Snape glared at her.
"No, seriously, you were defending us. Me specifically. I mean, you do remember I'm Harry Potter's girlfriend, right?"
The glare intensified. Draco started laughing.
Snape turned his icy glare to his redheaded girl. "Get them out of here before I decide it's worth it to strangle one with my bare hands."
Connor bristled. Willow ushered everyone out of the room rather quickly.
"He wouldn't really attempt to kill us, would he? I would have to hurt him if he did."
This was said after much silence. Lily giggled. Willow looked at Connor in alarm.
"Look, Connor..." Dawn said. "That was just Snape. He's like that. He doesn't mean those things he says."
Willow gave her this look that clearly said 'it's important that YOU believe that'.
"He says that stuff, and we joke about it, but Snape wouldn't hurt us. He actually likes people."
Draco started laughing hard and loudly. He had to stop and put his hand on the wall to keep from falling down. Lily and Willow were looking at Dawn with identical expressions on their faces. Made sense, both of them being 'Willow' and all.
Connor just looked confused. "He didn't seem like he was kidding. He had a very not kidding look in his eyes. Unless I was given the wrong definition for kidding."
Draco was still laughing.
"It wasn't THAT funny, Drake."
"Oh yes it was." Draco snorted with laughter. "I dare you to tell him that the next time you see him. Snape actually likes people." He let out a guffaw that shook dust from the rafters.
Dawn just glared at him.
"I appreciate that you want Severus to have a good heart, Dawnie... and... and he does, but um, for the most part he does not like people."
"He likes you."
"Well, I make it difficult to resist me. Resolve face and all."
"If you'd use your legs instead of dragging them, this would be easier."
"No wonder she calls you soddin' cranky pants."
"Yes because insulting me will get us to your room faster."
"I don't think we've ever had this conversation, mate."
"The conversation we're about to have."
"Could you possibly make some sense? I know it will be difficult considering the amount of alcohol you've in your system just now, but-"
"I haven't seen any sign of it, but if do wrong by my Red, I will kill you."
Snape stopped and looked at Spike. Wasn't difficult since the potions master was supporting the drunken vampire.
"That bird is all right. She deserves to be treated right. She's pure spirit with a drop of the wicked. You don't find 'em like that much anymore."
Snape just nodded. Sometimes Willow's capacity for winning over the hearts of people in her life was staggering.
"Not that it's really any of your affair, Malfoy, but I would never hurt Willow."
"That's what I thought." Spike slumped a bit more. "That's why you and I will never have a problem."
The vampire passed out then, and having a good grip on Severus, took him to the floor with him.
Snape rolled his eyes. Someone was coming. Spike was passed out and drooling on him already. Just perfect.
Snape looked up to see Angel standing over the both of them.
"I was looking for Connor." This weird smirk passed over his features. "But if I'm interrupting..."
"Connor's with Dawn, Draco, and Lily. Willow just took the students back to their dorm, and I'm certain she escorted Connor to his room."
"Would you mind terribly helping him off of me? The annoying git is drunk, and I was just trying to get him back to his room, so I might have some alone time with my Willow."
Angel's eyebrows shot up. He reached down with one hand and lifted Spike. He offered Snape the other one. When Severus had successfully been hauled back to a standing position, Angel hefted Spike over his shoulder.
"Where is his room?"
"This way." Snape took off.
"So Spike still gets slobbering drunk. I'm amazed the headmaster would have him then."
"That's really none of your affair." Snape snapped. He didn't know why he was so affronted by Angel's dig on Spike, but he was. "And for your information, William doesn't get drunk all the time. In the almost year he's been here, this is the first time I have ever seen him like this. He's actually a remarkably good influence on his nephew Draco."
Angel laughed. "Spike? A good influence? Right."
"Albus Dumbledore trusts him, and though there are many who think our headmaster throws his trust about like one might rice at a muggle wedding, he does not give it lightly. William Malfoy is trusted here. Best you remember that before you get insulting about him with a staff member that does not have my level of self control."
"Whoa. Sorry. I just... I didn't mean to tick you off. I guess I don't know Spike anymore."
"No. You don't."
Angel blinked. God, what had Spike done to warrant this sort of loyalty?
"William and Little Red are close. To hurt him is to hurt her." Snape paused. "Hurting her quite incurs my wrath."
"Look, I have to say this..." Angel said. "It seems like she likes you, and that you care for her... a lot, but if you hurt Willow, I'll kill you."
Snape rolled his eyes.
Was this a standard with all these Californians? Hurt so and so and I'll murder you... or break your legs... or beat you with a shovel... or rip out your rib cage and wear it as a hat. He considered it for a few minutes. It actually wasn't a bad life's philosophy.
Except for the hat thing.
Because he didn't like wearing hats.