Potions Class, Neville loses his temper, and Snape had a temper tantrum. Plus meeting with Albus
Summary: After the final battle, the Boy Who Lived is transported back into his 11 year old body, just prior to receiving his Hogwarts Letter. Sound like every re-do fic you've ever read? It is, except for one minor detail; the Boy Who Lived is named Neville Longbottom!
Disclaimer: Is this really necessary? I don't own any of the Harry Potter Characters or settings.
Pairings: None to start, come on; they're 11 years old! Will eventually be Neville/Ginny, and Harry/Hermione.
Authors Note: This is another plot bunny that has been biting on my toes, and hopefully I can get it out of the way and get moving on my other stories.
Credit Where Credit is Due Department: A section of this chapter is going to look familiar, or, rather, the idea of requesting a review of punishment will look familiar, because I saw something similar done in another story, unfortunately I don't recall where. I've done something different with it, so just accept that I was inspired by the other writer.
Feedback: Of course, it helps me write faster.
For the first time since the Sorting; Neville was honestly curious about what would happen next. He had heard complaints from the other Gryffindors about how bad a teacher Snape was, but, had no personal memories of the man. He had no concerns about being able to do the work, Slughorn may have been asocial climbing leech, but he knew his potions, and, more importantly, knew how to teach.
Unfortunately, it didn't take long for Snape to live down to his reputation. After starting the class with a ridiculous boast about bottling fame and brewing glory, and at the same time, insulting the entire class, he started in on Harry. Fortunately Harry kept his calm and answered the questions correctly, which seemed to disappoint Snape. Neville was pleased that Hermione had taken his words to heart and kept from raising her hand at every question. It was while he was being pleased that his friends had done so well, and he started brewing the potion that was on the blackboard, that the troubles started.
Unfortunately he was paired with Ron, because Harry and Hermione had already started sitting together, and Ron, while a nice enough guy, and excellent at Chess and talking about Quidditch, was absolute pants at preparing ingredients for brewing. So, Neville was preparing the ingredients; and trying to explain, as quietly as possible, why you slice some ingredients; and chop others. Unfortunately; he was paying more attention to what he was doing, and less to his surroundings, and was just starting to put the first ingredient in the cauldron when Snape sneered from behind him “And what do you think you are doing Longbottom? Do you fancy yourself a Potions Master?”
Mentally cursing himself for letting anybody sneak up on him, Neville answered as politely as possible,“I'm preparing the potion on the blackboard, Professor, why? Am I doing it wrong?”
“What you are doing wrong is disrupting my class, and your fellow students, by your constant nonsensical chatter! That will be 10 points from Gryffindor! Now, stop talking and get back to work!”
Unfortunately for both Snape, and Neville, the greasy bat wasn't dealing with a typical easily cowed first year, and Neville had little patience for bullies, especially when they were incompetent. Before he could stop himself, Neville blurted “Nonsensical Chatter? I was simply explaining how to prepare the ingredients so the potion would be properly made. How is that nonsensical? And, if you had actually taught the class how to prepare the ingredients, the way a Professor is supposed to teach, Iwouldn't have had to do your job and could have concentrated on the assignment”
The rest of the class was absolutely silent, including the Slytherins, some of whom were snickering as their Head of House tore into the Gryffindor but weren't prepared for the way the Gryffie defended himself.
Neville, even while he was cursing his temper, was mildly amused at how many different colors Snape could achieve in such a short period of time. Eventually the bat settled on a very unflattering shade of crimson; and growled out “That will be an additional 100 points for insulting a Professor, Longbottom and you will spend the next month with me in detention. Now, if you don't want to lose any more points, and spend the rest of the term with me, I'd suggest you hold your tongue and finish preparing your potion.”
Finally getting his temper under control; Neville nodded and went back to his potion, ignoring the glares he was receiving from his house mates, and the concerned looks he got from Harry and Hermione. The rest of the class passed without incident, and eventually they were dismissed.
Once outside the classroom, the Gryffindors, except for Harry and Hermione, rounded on Neville, yelling at him for losing so many points, until he held up his hands and quieted them down. “Don't worry about the points, they were completely unreasonable, and won't stand. Watch this!”
Following him, Neville led the Gryffindors out of the dungeon and into the Entry Hall. Stopping at a portrait of Godric Gryffindor; Neville said, “Gryffindor student requesting review of punishment.” A pleasant female voice came from the portrait, “Nature of punishment?” and a silvery area appeared at the bottom of the portrait. Neville took his wand and pulled a silver strand from his temple and placed it in the portrait. The silver area disappeared, and the voice stated, “Memory received, point removal and detention are suspended until final review.”
Turning to his classmates, Neville wasn't surprised to see an almost ecstatic look on Hermione's face, an amused expression from Harry, and shock on the rest of the class, broken by Ron Weasley's “Wicked! But why didn't you tell us about this the other day? I could have gotten rid of those points Professor Sprout took.”
“Sorry Ron, it doesn't work that way. Those were legitimate points she took, and, if you had tried to get them reviewed, and they were ruled as valid, you would have lost twice as many.”
“If you get a ridiculous amount of points taken, or legitimately feel that the punishment wasn't right, you can find an portrait of one of the founders and request areview. But, you have to be careful and make sure that you didn't deserve to have the points taken, because the penalty is severe for submitting a review that is rejected. Now, we have Flying next, and I don't want to be late.”
The first flying lesson was fairly uneventful, except for Malfoy trying to show off and falling from his broom. Neville wasn't surprised to see that Harry was a natural on a broom, because the other Harry he knew was an amazing flier as well. Hermione was a pleasant surprise, she had never been a very strong flier in the past, but now, while not as comfortable as he or Harry were, she did seem to enjoy the flight.
They had lunch right after the Flying lesson and hurried in to eat. Neville wasn't surprised to see that the Gryffindor Points Counter was right where it should be, and that Snape was glaring at him with a look that practically defined loathing. Sitting down to eat, he was interrupted by Hermione; who said “Where did you learn that about the portraits? It wasn't in any of the books I'd read, it wasn't even in 'Hogwarts, AHistory'!”
“I found it in a Journal one of my great grandfathers had left in the family library. It's not exactly a secret, but not a lot of people know about it, and, for obvious reasons, the Headmaster and staff don't advertise it.”
Harry laughed, “And you said Ishould have been in Ravenclaw? What did you do, spend all day, every day for the last few years reading every book you could find, just so you could come up with surprises like this?”
“Nah, not even close, but, I do read really fast, and the family library has some really interesting charms that allow you to find a book that has exactly the information you may be looking for. Unfortunately; Hermione; I haven't been able to figure out the charm, so I can't teach it you.”
He laughed at Hermione's cute pout, when she realized that there was something she wouldn't be able to learn yet. Of course, his laughing set Harry off, and eventually Hermione started laughing as well.
It was while they were laughing that Neville noticed Professor McGonagall walking towards them. “Yes Professor? How can I help you?”
“Mister Longbottom; the Headmaster would like to see you in his office as soon as you are finished eating.”
Neville set his napkin down, “Well, I'm finished now, so, would you mind showing me how to get there?” Tossing a wink at his friends, Neville stood and followed his head of house out of the Great Hall.
'Okay, Neville, remember, this isn't the same Albus you knew. He doesn't know you from Adam and probably won't be too happy with you right now! Keep calm, no losing your temper, and keep your shields in place!' Repeating those thoughts over and over Neville walked up the staircase to the Headmaster's office and knocked on the door.
Hearing the Headmaster's voice calling for them to enter, the two of them walked in. “You wanted to see me Professor?”
“Yes I did, Mister Longbottom, please, have a seat. Would you care for a lemon drop?”
He looked mildly disappointed that Neville declined the candy. “To start with, your point removal has been reviewed, and, while you could have been more polite in how you spoke to Professor Snape, the fact remains that the point removal and detention were excessive, and have been erased.” Neville nodded his thanks, but the Headmaster wasn't finished.
Leaning forward over his desk, he continued, “That being said Mister Longbottom; I'm afraid I'm going to have to insist that you refrain from requesting any more reviews. It will cause unnecessary difficulties for the staff, and, if I may speak frankly, there are those who will try and follow your example and submit frivolous reviews, in the hope of avoid valid punishment. Do I need to say any more?”
Taking a deep breath; Neville looked at the Headmaster and said; “With all due respect Professor Dumbledore, I have to refuse your request. The right of any student to request a review of unjust punishment was established by the Founders themselves, and you have no right to make that request. As for the frivolous reviews, I already warned my classmates that if the review found the punishment valid, that the punishment would be doubled. So, I don't think you have to worry about any Gryffindor's trying to avoid valid punishment. As for causing unnecessary difficulties, the only reason I had to request a review was because your Potions Professor was not teaching. Not every student walks into their first potions class having been taught the basics at home. If your potions instructor had taken the time to teach ingredient preparation, instead of wasting time posturing and insulting students, I would not have needed to assist Ron, and we would have completed the assignment with no problem. I have to wonder though, you have seen my memory of the class, is that the recommended teaching method for potions now? Somehow I doubt it. Now, if I can be excused, I have an essay I need to complete for Transfiguration.”
It was while the Headmaster and his head of house were sitting, speechless, that Snape decided to make his presence known. Neville had been aware of the greasy bat hiding in the shadows of the room ever since he first walked into the room.
“Foolish Child! Do you really think that was a request? You will obey the Headmaster or I will see you expelled! I am a Certified Potions Master and you have no right to question how I teach you sniveling dunderheads, do you hear me!”
Neville couldn't help himself, he laughed, quite hard. Finally getting himself under control, he turned to the Headmaster; “Pardon me for asking Professor Dumbledore; but is it customary for Professors to refer to their students as 'sniveling dunderheads'? Or for a Professor to have atemper tantrum when they don't get their way?” Not waiting for an answer, he stood and faced Snape.
“Professor Snape; you are not dealing with a scared Muggleborn now. I am Head of House Longbottom; and will not tolerate your childish behavior, I am well aware of my rights and responsibilities as a student here, and, I am also aware of the responsibilities of a Professor, perhaps you are not aware of this, but my maternal grandmother taught potions here for 25 years, prior to leaving to assist in the war against Grindenwald. I know, from going over her potions journals, how potions should be taught. Now, once again, Headmaster; may I be excused?”
The stunned wizard just nodded his head, and Neville gathered his things and left. Stopping at the door, he rested his hand on the wall and turned, saying; “I wish I could say it was a pleasure, but it wasn't. I hope we understand each other now, Professor Snape. Professor McGonagall; Headmaster; have a nice day.
Shutting the door behind him, he snickered as he heard Snape having another temper tantrum. 'I wonder how long it will be before the Headmaster discovers the listening charm I put in his office. They would never expect a first year to be able to do wandless or silent spell work, so this should be interesting.'
Still chuckling, he went to the library to meet his friends.
End Chapter 5