The Eeylops Owl Emporium is bustling with customers as more than one parent is present with their children to select an owl. Lily and Severus excitedly study the many cages with owls from all around the world from the Great Horned Owl of North America to the African Owl from the plains of Africa. Lily and Severus eagerly point at owls as they try to decide on an owl. However, as usual, Rowan sniffs at the falling feathers and mutters something about an unsanitary pet shop.
Seeing Lily and Severus so excitedly choosing an owl, Reginald turns towards Rowan. "Don't you want one?" Reginald curiously asked.
Rowan stifles a yawn and says, "No, I can just share with Sev."
"No, I'm not!" Severus barked back having overheard Rowan's remark.
Rowan smugly smiles back and retorts, "Yes, you will." Severus seeing Rowan's determined gaze stiffly turns away and ignores her causing Rowan to snicker in victory.
Reginald shakes his head at the twin's antics. "Well, how about a toad or a cat?"
"No, I'd like a crow, but they're not allowed," Rowan determinedly muttered back.
Reginald sighs in exasperation, "Fine, then what would you like?"
"I thought you would never ask," Rowan sincerely said as she fluttered her eyelashes innocently up at him. After all, this was exactly what Rowan had been waiting for and planning the entire summer. "Grandfather being the talented man that you are, you naturally have many connections. I would be very pleased if you were to arrange a private introduction with Auror Alastor Moody."
Reginald narrows his eyes in surprise and shock. Didn't girls normally want feminine things? After composing himself, Reginald suspiciously asks, "Why?"
"I want to be an Auror someday," Rowan neatly lied. "I thought it would be best to get a head start and hear the information directly from the source itself."
Reginald is quiet for some time and pointedly says, "Is that all?"
"Of course, grandfather. Why else would an eleven-year-old girl want to meet such a famous Auror?" Rowan innocently countered back.
Reginald is quiet for some time, before carefully replying, "Very well, I can arrange for a short visit at the manor, before your departure to Hogwarts."
"Thank you, grandfather," Rowan gratefully as she gave Reginald a tight hug.
Reginald ruefully grins to himself at seeing himself so very twined around the little finger of his granddaughter. Reginald glances up to see that Lily and Severus have selected two Great Horned Owls. Reginald gently entangles himself from Rowan and heads to the counter to pay for the two owls, food and supplies including the cages.
Lily and Severus are barely able to hold up their cages with their large brown owls. "So, you went with the Great Horned owl, huh? Excellent choice," Rowan remarked, knowing full well that Severus selected the same owl as Lily.
"Thanks. Her name is Nibby," Lily happily said as Nibby gently rubbed her head against Lily's finger.
"Hmm, that explains why she's bigger than Severus's owl," Rowan thought to herself. After all, female great Horned Owls tended to be bigger than the males.
Seeing Lily name her owl, Severus opens his mouth to name his own owl, but Rowan interrupts him. "His name is Owyn. Spelled O-W-Y-N."
Severus glares at Rowan about to get into a fight, when Lily says, "That is rather sweet, I like it."
Severus's entire demeanor instantly changes as he says, "Of course, Owyn is an excellent name." Rowan smirks at Severus as Severus warningly shots an icy glare at Rowan reminding her to keep her comments to herself.
Reginald returns with food and supplies in hand and carefully hands over Lily's items with a short explanation on the item's usage. Tired, maybe from old age, but with great relief, Reginald leads them all back out of Diagon Alley. The Evans couple sincerely thank Reginald and promise to invite them over later for dinner in thanks.
Reginald happily accepts as Lily and Severus gaze at each other quietly and rather sadly at the knowledge that they won't see each other until the start of the school year. Seeing the two of them so forlorn, Rowan says, "For heaven's sake you two, the both of you have bloody owls. Just write to each other each day until September 1st!"
"You're right," Lily and Severus excitedly exclaimed as they shared a private smile.
Feeling much better, the three of them say their goodbyes as Lily follows the Evans couple and Severus and Rowan enter the enchanted car. In the backseat, Severus carefully holds his owl in its cage as Severus and Rowan both very firmly buckle their seat belts. Reginald closes the car trunk shut and pauses at the car door at seeing Rowan's grimacing face. "What's wrong?" Reginald hastily asked as he stepped inside.
"Just drive," Rowan drily exclaimed as Severus grunted in agreement.
"Huh, they must be hungry or tired," Reginald naturally concluded to himself, without realizing it was for fear of his driving. With a whirr, Reginald pulls into traffic without even glancing both ways and proceeds to violate just about every traffic law known and unknown to man. By the time, they pull up at the Prince manor, Rowan had finished mentally singing the entire lyrics of Abide with Me several times as Severus rather green emerged out of the car with his owl cage in hand.
Although wane faced, Rowan privately congratulated herself on surviving the death ride from hell as death-defying rollercoasters had nothing on her grandfather. "I'll just have Dawn take these your things up to your room," Reginald called out to them as Severus and Rowan made their ways up the marble front steps.
Severus and Rowan share a look that screams, "Never AGAIN!" Tragically, enough for them, they would need to in order to get to Platform 9 's. But even worse for many more years to come. The true and utter horror.
Severus eagerly clutches his owl and wand in hand to show their grandmother, Sirsa. Rowan carefully opens the front door as loud shouts can be heard from within. Severus's joy dampens, but neither Severus nor Rowan reacted much to the shouts as they step inside.
"This is all you fault," Eileen screamed. "None of this would have ever happened if you had just allowed me to live out my own life!"
"You are an a.d.u.l.t, Eileen. And a rather foolish one at that to be uttering such childish remarks," Sirsa coldly countered. "What you wanted ceased to matter the moment you had children."
Eileen bites her lip in fury, before rushing upstairs as Sirsa called out after her, "You can't run away from this, Eileen Snape!" Sirsa sighs in frustration and turns around to spot the two quiet figures of the twins. Sirsa's face anxiously twists as she stiffly asks, "How long have the two of you been here?"
"Since everything is your fault apparently, grandmother," Rowan drily remarked.
Sirsa face falls as she carefully replies, "Your mother is under a great deal of stress right now. I'm sure she truly didn't mean her words."
"If you say so," Rowan replied rather unconvinced.
Sirsa furrows her brows at Rowan's nonchalant reaction, before turning to eye the quiet and rather alert figure of Severus. Neither of the twins showed any fear or shock at the argument, but rather a wary stance as if ready to run at the drop of a hat. After all, this was a rather common event for them that the instinct to flee was rather engrained into the twins.
Reginald enters the house to find a rather awkward atmosphere in the hall. "Did you already see their wands?" Reginald curiously asked.
"I haven't had time yet," Sirsa swiftly said. "Please show me."
Severus proudly holds up his simple, elegant wand. "Blackthorn with a silver dragon heartstring. 13 1/2 inches," Severus said.
"A good wand," Sirsa said in approval.
Rowan holds out her gray, blackish wand and says, "Elder with a Thestral core. 13 inches."
Sirsa's eyes flicker as the wandlore phrase taught to all wizard children echoing in her mind, "Wand of elder, never prosper." But she tactfully remains silent on the subject. "An excellent wand as well," Sirsa replied, before glancing sideways at Reginald. "Well, hurry up and take your things upstairs. I'm sure the both of you are famished and Dawn made quite the lovely meal tonight."
Severus and Rowan head upstairs as Rowan aids Severus with his owl cage by gripping the side of his cage to carry it up the stairs. The moment, the twins vanish upstairs, Reginald steely asks, "What happened?"
Sirsa sighs and says, "They heard our argument. And words that should not have been said were spoken."
Reginald rubs his face with his hand in frustration. "And how did they react?" Reginald grumbled.
"They didn't," Sirsa quietly muttered. "Rather they reacted as if this was commonplace to them and just shrugged our argument off."
The two of them are silent for some time until Reginald says, "Come let's get going before the twins notice our frustration." Sirsa nods her head as the two of them head over to the dining hall to wait for the twins to join them.
Upstairs Rowan washes her hands after having carefully put her wand away. Finished, she dries her hand on a hand towel and walks to the door across from her own bedroom. She leans against the doorframe as she quietly watches Severus stroke Owny. "You know, I can tell their argument got to you," Rowan purposefully remarked.
Without looking up Severus replies, "I know that mum doesn't love us very much at times." Severus's voice lowered down to a whisper, "But still, I don't know why I even bothered, but I thought that maybe that would all change when we got here."
"Mm, magic or not, people are the same wherever they go," Rowan wisely replied as she sat down next to Severus on the bed.
"I know," Severus quietly mumbled.
The two of them are silent for some time until Rowan puts her arm around Severus's shoulder. "Sev, you know, that you're stuck with me forever and ever, right?" Rowan brazenly declared.
Severus's face begins to turn light pink as he flings Rowan's arm off. "Who would want to be stuck with you for all eternity?!" Severus grumbled as a small smile appears on his face.
"Oh, ho," Rowan snickered. "Too bad for you, you're stuck with me."
"As if," Severus snapped back.
Seeing Severus that much better, Rowans stands up and says, "C' mon let's head down for supper before Dawn is sent to retrieve us."
"You'd think they'd realize that we know the way by now," Severus drily remarked as he followed Rowan downstairs. Either way, despite the ups and downs. It had been a fruitful day for the both of them.