Harry had a smug arsehole to find. The only question was where he would be. The dungeons would be the obvious choice, that was where he lived. But the strategic mind said "Go High" - and if Harry was wrong, he would at least have gotten to see the view. So Harry headed up, towards the top of the North Tower. At least if he was wrong, he could probably spot where Snape was lying low.
As the wind riffled through his perpetually unkempt hair, Harry grinned down at the grounds. Then he looked again. Hagrid, of course! It was one of the least likely places to find the Saturnine Professor - Harry couldn't help but think that Hagrid rubbed Snape wrong, even though Snape generally managed a pretense of courtesy around the Gamekeeper.
The lack of students around Hagrid's was the dead giveaway. There was always someone there - Harry hadn't noticed Goyle in particular, but despite the near-grown man's size, he was still a Slytherin - slipping away when he saw the Gryffs trundling up...
Harry ducked around a bend, meaning to head through the entrance hall. What he saw within froze him - the entire grade of Slytherins, arguing about where Snape could possibly be. It was Pansy that caught his eye, and said forthrightly, "Looks like Potter's got a clue."
Crabbe, in his best doltish voice, said, "Why can't we just follow him?"
It was a solid question, and Harry didn't exactly care if they followed him - he wanted the "classroom glory" sure, but didn't object to allies trailing in his wake. Find Me didn't exactly tell you what to do when you got there, now did it?
Harry was about a third of the way from the greenhouses to Hagrid's Hut, when the first stunner slid by him. As soon as he saw that, he did his best "snake impression" - belly to the ground, eyes up - and ready to hiss out a spell, once he had a target. There was a loud sound from behind Harry, which made him roll to the side, giving him enough of a view to see... They'd gotten Pansy Parkinson, and she hadn't been near Harry at all.
Whoever was calling the shots up there was sharp. Probably not a Hufflepuff, and definitely not Hermione. As more stunners rent the air, Harry hissed, "Down!" Hurriedly, the Slytherins obeyed, even the ones with solid shield spells up.
Malfoy crawled forward, the grass stains luckily (for him) hidden on the black fabric. His voice was mocking, "What now, O Battle Leader?"
"Fearsome Battle Leader to you," Harry snapped, with a smirk following just after. "Recon. Take your three quietest people, and circle left."
"Doesn't leave you with much to work with," Malfoy observed, smirking.
"On the contrary," Harry smirked, "I want to be making noise."
"We will do better with a known distraction," Malfoy said, sounding satisfied. He crawled back to the Slytherins (including Pansy, who'd been woken, and was blinking blearily). True to form, Malfoy took Nott and Pansy. Harry wasn't surprised at the choices, nor at Malfoy's own presence. He was too power-hungry to let someone else take over.
What was that saying? Plans never survive contact with the enemy?
This was far worse. They'd had unknown erstwhile allies, hiding in the grass. Until they'd nearly stepped on them, and Constant Vigilance had routed both sides, leaving both too weak to assault the center.
Granger's team showed up while they were still regrouping. Harry wouldn't have known it was her, without knowing that Moody had trained her. She'd sent the rest of her team in on a Gryffindor mission (somehow Goyle was involved, and he looked as out of place with Lavender and Seamus as sesame with chocolate). They'd had decent shields, but they were almost not needed, Granger's own targeting (she'd climbed a greenhouse, which meant that any lucky fellow beneath her could see-no!) perfectly sufficient to strike down all the defenders.
As Snape yelled, "TIME!" he strolled out of Hagrid's Hut, perfectly coiffed.
He hadn't even cast a spell the wnhole period, Harry figured.
"Your homework assignment is to relay as much of this classroom as you can understand. "
[a/n: Snape's a bit more of a dick.
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