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Phineas Nigellus, Matchmaker

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"Pssst, Ms. Granger," hissed the portrait of Phineas Nigellus.

"I forgot you were in here," Hermione replied, pulling the small portrait out of the depths of her little beaded bag.

"Look, forget that ginger dunderhead. I can tell you where Snape is, and he could use a, well, friend."

"You've really been in the depths of my bag for a while, haven't you? I'm not seeing anyone right now. And I thought Snape took up with Malfoy Sr after Narcissa passed away from that curse Bellatrix hit her with," she replied.

"I'm not saying that isn't true, but sometimes, there is nothing quite like a woman, Ms. Granger," the portrait said.

"Considering Ron said I was nothing quite like a woman, I don't know that I am the witch you are looking for," she said.

"Oh for blasted sake's girl. I was told I could hang in Malfoy's erotic painting parlor if I could get you to show up at the Manor ready for romance," the portrait stated, supremely annoyed.

Hermione thought about it for a bit. It wasn't like the thought of those two men wasn't enough to moisten her knickers. "Fine, then. What should I wear?"

Fifteen minutes later, Hermione was in the newly renovated front parlor of Malfoy Manor, feeling like she was about to be pounced by both Snape and Malfoy who had stood up at her entrance through the floo.

"We weren't sure if we should expect you or not," said Lucius, "But I did tell Phineas I'd leave the floo open until 7."

"Shall I take your coat, Ms. Granger?" Severus said.

"I should warn you, I'm wearing exactly what Phineas said you would both prefer," she said.

The comment stopped Severus cold. He looked over at Lucius. Minus their occasional preference for the same witch, neither one had similar tastes in what they liked said witches to wear.

"I'm curious, Ms. Granger," said Lucius. "I don't believe there is any outfit that would satisfy both of us."

Severus nodded.

"And what do I get if you're wrong, Lucius? Severus?"

After another telling look, the men answered as one, "Whatever you want." They both had a moment of dread when a rather predatory smile crossed her face. They watched with bated breath as she slowly unfastened her cloak.

As it puddled to the floor, revealing the unclad witch beneath, both men smiled.

"You win, Hermione," Severus said, moving quickly to speak in her ear.

"You win that bet, for certain, Hermione," Lucius said, having come up on the other side almost as quickly. "So, what is it you want?"


And it was so.