When Lucius Malfoy asked his best friend, Severus Snape, to come to his house (and fast), Severus assumed it was because Lucius’ wife, Narcissa, had finally given birth to the first born Malfoy heir and Lucius wanted to celebrate. And he wasn’t wrong… but he also wasn’t quite correct, either.
“Dispose of this,” Lucius told him, depositing a bundle of blankets into Severus’ arms before the young man had come fully through the floo. Severus stumbled backwards, his shoulders knocking into the hearth as he gazed down at the bundle in his arms. Ice blue eyes stared back at him, the baby quiet and oddly calm for a newborn. Severus could see that the child hadn’t even been cleaned off yet and he frowned as he turned his attention to his friends.
“What’s going on, Lucius?”
“Twins,” the older blonde sniffed. “Purebloods don’t have twins for the first pregnancy, it just isn’t done. If the Healer had told us it was twins in the beginning, we would have terminated one right that moment, but the useless woman didn’t know there were two until Narcissa gave birth.”
“Dispose of the child, Severus. Do your duty like a good boy and make sure no one knows of this. I have only one child. One son.” And with that, Lucius turned on his heel and walked away, leaving Severus gaping and unbelieving of what he had been asked to do. Once more he gazed at the strangely quiet child in his arms before he heaved a deep sigh and adjusted the bundle in his arms. Holding the child tight (but not too tight) against his chest, Severus grabbed a handful of floo powder and, after a bit of hesitation, flooed back to his home.
Once he was standing in his own shabby living room, Severus sighed once more.
“What in the world am I going to do with you?” he asked, not that he expected an answer. He had no idea how to take care of a baby but he sure as hell wasn’t going to simply kill the child as he had been instructed. Thinking of Lucius made him hold the child close once more, appalled at the actions of a man he called his best friend. Not that he would ever call him such things ever again.
“Potter’s expecting a baby,” he said suddenly, a thrill running up his spine. “They’ll know what to do!” He made sure the baby was still wrapped securely in its towel before he apparated as close to the Potter home as was possible - right onto the front lawn of James and Lily Potter’s home in Godric’s Hollow. He felt like everything was moving much too quickly but at the same time, he felt as though he was moving much too slowly as well.
Striding to the door, Severus knocked curtly on the door, gently bouncing the child in his arms, not that it had made any noise. If it wasn’t for the wide, bright blue eyes constantly watching him, Severus would have worried that the child had died.
James opened the door with a smile, though it faded into a frown as soon as he saw Severus standing on his stoop.
“What do you want, Snape?”
“I need your help,” Severus said quickly, nodding his head towards the child in his arms. “I don’t know how to take care of a baby.” James all but sneered at him, barely sparing a glance at the baby before he rolled his eyes and made a shooing motion with one of his hands.
“You should have wrapped it before you tapped it, Snape. That’s your problem, not ours.”
“But--” Severus tried again, taking a step forward, only to be greeted by the end of James’ wand being pointed under his chin.
“You aren’t wanted here, Snape. I thought Lily made that perfectly clear. Now, get off our property.”
“You don’t understand!” Severus all but pleaded, panic rising in him. “The baby isn’t--” His words were cut short as James slammed the door in his face, leaving Severus fighting back tears. Behind him he could hear snickers and the beginnings of laughter, Remus and Sirius arriving to visit their friends. The two had heard enough to know that Severus was apparently suddenly a father and had every intention of mocking him.
“The baby isn’t mine…” Severus said softly, closing his eyes against the tears as he took a deep breath before turning away from the door. He knew he was probably looking rather upset, probably a bit red in the face, and his eyes were no doubt glassy.
“It’s not yours?” Remus asked quietly, all traces of mockery gone as he and Sirius realized that whatever was going on was clearly no laughing matter. When Severus shook his head the two quickly darted forward, Remus taking the child from Severus’ arms and quickly checking the baby over.
“It hasn’t cried at all…” Severus mumbled, quickly becoming overwhelmed with the entire situation. Sirius took his arm and held the dark haired male steady, the two watching as Remus unbundled the child.
“It’s a boy,” Remus told them. “And he’s still covered in blood… How long have you had him?”
“Not even an hour,” Severus admitted, forcing himself to take several deep breaths. He was grateful to have someone finally listening to him.
“Where did you get him?” Sirius tried to ask but Severus only shook his head, mumbling about how he couldn’t tell them.
“I know Lily is due soon and I thought they might help me,” he explained. “I don’t know what to do. I’ve never had siblings! I’m only nineteen!” Panic was rising once again and Remus frowned, bundling the child up once again.
“We should take him to St. Mungo’s,” Sirius said. “Why didn’t you take him there?”
“I can’t,” Severus said, his voice shaky. “His parents… they… they told me to dispose of him… If I take him to St. Mungo’s they’ll run a lineage trace on him and if this baby goes back to the parents… they’ll do what I couldn’t do.” Remus and Sirius were horrified, staring at Severus with shocked expressions. They had to think fast. They had no way of knowing if the child had been seen by a Healer, if he was healthy, and it was somewhat concerning that he wasn’t making any noise.
“Poppy?” Sirius offered, glancing at his boyfriend.
“Poppy,” Remus confirmed, nodding. “We’ll apparate home and then floo to Hogwarts, immediately.” Sirius curled his arms around Severus and held him close, even though holding his elbow would have been more than enough for a side-along apparation, the two vanishing from the grass of Godric’s Hollow and appearing inside the flat Remus and Sirius shared. Severus was clearly in shock as he let Sirius shuttle him around, the two waiting for Remus to go on ahead of them through the floo before he was once more being held tightly and Sirius pulled him into the floo.
Everything from there was somewhat a blur to the slender aspiring potions master, Severus allowing himself to be settled onto a bed as Remus called out for Hogwarts’ Healer, Madam Poppy Pomfrey.
“What in the world is going on?” Madam Pomfrey asked as she came out from her office, frowning at the sight of her long time patient, Remus, holding a bundle that she could only assume was a baby.
“We need help,” Remus admitted, glancing over his shoulder at his boyfriend who was tending to Severus before turning his attention back to his Healer turned friend. “Severus was handed a baby about an hour ago and it hasn’t cried once and it’s still wet and bloody and…” His words were coming out in a jumble as his own anxiety began to break through his previously calm exterior. Madam Pomfrey sighed softly and offered a kind smile, crossing the room to gently take the child from Remus’ arms.
“Well, first we’ll start with some diagnostic spells,” she told them, though she wasn’t sure if Severus was listening, or capable of listening. “While I do the spells, you can get some hot water and some towels and start cleaning him off, Remus.” The brunette nodded, doing as he was asked and moving to gather the requested supplies. After seven years of monthly visits, Remus was nearly as familiar with the medical wing as Madam Pomfrey herself was.
“They’re taking care of him right now,” Sirius told Severus, coaxing the other man to lay down on the bed. He wasn’t sure if Severus was aware of anything that was going on around them, but he didn’t want to simply walk away and leave the young man without some sort of support.
“We’ve all really changed, eh?” he continued, moving to sit on the floor beside the bed, leaning back against the edge of it and letting his head fall backwards so he was looking at the ceiling.
“Out of school barely a year and things are really changing, for all of us. James and Lily are having a baby in less than two months. Remus and I moved in together. I got a random inheritance from a disowned uncle I knew nothing about… Oh, and I got a job!” Sirius was rambling, moving his hands as he spoke. “I’m working at Broomstix, in the Alley. Remus is still looking, but you know how that goes, him being sick and all. He’s super smart, though, so I keep telling him not to give up.” While he wasn’t sure if Severus was aware of where they were and what was going on, Sirius smiled to himself as he felt Severus’ fingers find their way into his hair. It was barely noticeable, a gentle touch to his long, wavy locks, but he felt it nonetheless and wasn’t going to complain. Everyone loved having their hair played with, even if Severus hadn’t done more than rest his fingers in the silky mass.
Only a few beds over, Madam Pomfrey and Remus were having a quiet, but very serious, conversation regarding the infant male. Diagnostic spells had deemed the boy perfectly healthy, even if he still hadn’t cried, and gentle hands had cleared the remains of the birth from his pale skin, exposing hair so blonde it was hard to see.
“And you have no idea where Severus got the child?” Madam Pomfrey asked once more, keeping her voice low. Remus shook his head, only able to tell the woman what Severus had told him - the boy was meant to be disposed of and Severus had opted to seek help instead.
“Well, I’ll give you a list of supplies you’re going to need, if you’re going to keep him.” The older woman paused, glancing between Remus and the two dark haired males a ways away from them.
“Are all three of you keeping him? Or just Severus?”
“Oh… I…” Remus wasn’t sure how to answer. The child wasn’t his, nor was it Sirius’, but Severus had asked for help.
“I see. Well, you’re the most level headed at the moment, so I’m going to trust you to at least take the time to educate Severus, alright?” the woman continued, showing Remus how to pin a cloth diaper in place without skewering the child.