As the students sorted themselves into groups of four, Snape had quietly made his way toward the podium, where the homework assignments were being belatedly put (Hufflepuffs, in particular, having decided that "grouping up" was more important and time-critical than turning in the assignment).
Snape leapt onto the small raised platform from behind it, and that motion - or the sound - caught the attention of the room. Snape stood as if he'd been standing there all along, and asked, "Who lied on their homework?"
Sue Bones' eyes went wide at even the thought, although Hermione looked like she was trying to set Snape on fire with her eyes. Several of the Gryffindors (primarily Ron and Neville) looked very, very sheepish.
But none of them raised their hand.
Harry's eyes flicked towards the Ravenclaws, who looked mostly baffled, as they were scattered around the room.
The Slytherins, to a one, smirked, and raised their hands.
Harry had thought of lying, but had decided that he trusted Snape enough not to need to. This pagentry strongly suggested he'd been wrong, at least from a curriculum perspective.
Snape sneered at the room, "Did you perhaps forget that my loyalty to you has a time limit?" Snape's eyes raked the room, "That, past the end of this year, my occupation will no longer be wiping your noses and ensuring that you can survive?"
Snape's eyes flashed with dark thoughts, though he only sneered, "Most of you have been foolish enough to put enough blackmail material in here that I could have a quite profitable career out of the deal." Harry knew Snape was right in his case, unfortunately enough.
"Enough!" Snape said in a loud voice that somehow wasn't a shout. "Caelum!" he said, but Harry - who'd been nearer to the side of the podium than not, caught the motion of his wand, and that was not the same spell. The verbal spell lit the papers in deep violet fire, and they burnt to ash.
"You may all be thankful that, for the moment, my loyalty is to you, imbeciles and idiots included." Snape sneered. "Those cunning enough to lie shall receive extra credit." Harry knew, deep down in his heart, that he ought to be upset that the Slytherins were getting points for their house virtue, but he really couldn't bring himself to care. It was DADA, wasn't it? He ought to expect more points to Gryffindor, in the main, for being brave.
The room was nearly caught up in talking about what Snape had just done.
When Snape spoke, in his soft tones, and said, "Form equilateral triangles, with one of your four in the center. The central person is the fulcrum. The outer people should join hands, and merge their magic. The central person shall direct it."
[a/n: Finishing up the class the next post. Leave a review? Were you expecting that? Harry sort of was, believe it or not.]