"The filthy, infatuated ignoramus has been stickin' his nose where it doan' belong." Snape snarled, and Minerva blinked. That was quite a bit more emotion than even Dumbledore managed to evoke out of Snape, and Dumbledore was really quite good at the poking. She'd waited too long -
Snape continued, "Nae, tis worse than a' that, true enuff. Aka fyeul took it into his head to do worse than gep around." Snape looked down his nose at Minerva, "And ye kna he does that more'n tis healthy for man nor beast."
Minerva, feeling all of her craky joints, said, "Sounds like a certain young Slytherin I mind from way back..."
"Four furry dogs and a mouthful of clackers sure drowned that!" Snape said, in a tone that Minerva recognized as sharply contained mad-laughter. "That champion clarty lad has got to refuse to dee as he's sure been telt!"*
Minerva shook her head, "Nae wonder yer in fine fettle here. He's sure kicked off a heap of trouble."
Snape looked up at Minerva, and hissed, "He'd gotten, nevermind how," Minerva interpreted, more from his face than his words, Oh, so this is your fault. Poor luck for Potter, then. You never could admit fault easy, could you? "The madcap idea that I'd had a Gryffindor friend."
Minerva looked at him in open interest. Did you-?
Snape shook his head, denying the unasked question. "For what buggering reason, I dinna knae, but he blithering has to ask Draco Malfoy about that lang ago!"
Minerva froze, her eyes widening. While Snape would, in public, call Lucius Malfoy a friend, it was in truth more of an uneasy truce. Minerva slowly shook her head, "The gall of that lad," she whispered.
"Blasted scrounger couldn't even be bothered to ask me!" Snape said, entirely oblivious to the fact that no child would ever voluntarily stay in his presence long enough to dare a question. Not even his Slytherins.
"Or me, or Dumbledore, or Remus Lupin." Minerva said, crossing her arms. "Sumpin's not right wi' this. Did he think your friend was a Death Eater, perhance?"
Snape nodded slowly, "A very good point, that; one I hadna though o'."
Minerva studied Snape, "You're plannin' on fixin' his wagon, aren't ya?"
Snape's smile was unctuous as tar, slow, without showing a single tooth. "O' coz,"
Minerva nodded slowly, "Well, that certainly explains why ye've been glarin' at him fit to burn his hair off."
Snape chuckled lowly. Minerva did still remember that bit of accidental magic he'd done, in her class, when Black and Potter had been fooling around near Lily. It had been fourth year.
Minerva asked, calmly, "Do you intend to forgive him?"
Snape said, "He's lost my trust. Forgiveness is one thing, but I canna trust meself half the time. I dinna have time for this, sure enuff." Snape waived his hands dismissively, "After the war. Maybe."
Minerva sat up, and said sternly, "Then, you ol' rotter of a Slytherin, get your own emotions under control. You can't be so steamed he's sure you're going to kill him while he natters away, in his sleep an' a'"
Snape was never one to take criticism well, but he simply closed his eyes, and nodded.
Minerva said sternly, "The nerve of that boy."
Snape said, "I'm never sure whether Lucius has truly forgotten my insignificant place at Hogwarts, or whether he's just holding it as future blackmail material."
Minerva chuckled, and then smirked, "Be grateful that snake isn't using it for current blackmail material."
Snape sighed, and said, "I am, believe me."
The conversation turned onto other subjects, as the two professors relaxed in a way they'd never do in public. Both stuffed shirt types, though Minerva's upbringing was a bit more luxury than Snape's. They both held dignity and respect as founding virtues.
By the time Minerva tottered up to her room, it was lang past midnight, but she didn't care. She'd gotten answers, and that was important. Now, what, if anything to do with the answers?
*This is North for 'do as your told' which Doctor Who fans should recognize.
[a/n: reviews always make me happier, and thus write more. Did you think Minerva was there to mediate? Minerva knew he was letting his emotions get the better of him.]