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Secrets of Midnight

Chapter Text

“Wands away, please,” came the order but this time no one moved anymore.

Harry Potter, just like his other classmates knew exactly there was no point in hoping it would get any better. Umbridge would hold a lesson the same way as she always did. The futility in that pushed Harry into an irritated state right away. Voldemort was alive and they were stuck here with this evil woman, who was blindly following the Ministry’s orders. He felt a strong urge to hit something.

“Open your books at the eights chapter and-“

“-Start reading.” Ron finished next to him, knowing the drill precisely too. Dean, who sat in front of them, turned back and smirked. Harry grinned back and then opened his book, before Hermione would poke him to do so or he ended up with another detention.

He was able to bare it for ten minutes then he took his quill in hand and started doodling on the side of the book. His Snitch looked quite right after some time. Ron grinned and touched the drawing with his wand. The Snitch fluttered its wings then started flying around the pages. They both watched it as it flew over letters on and on and on.

Harry draw a stick man on a broom on the other side of the page on a whim and pushed the book closer to Ron, who transformed the drawing again. The stick figure immediately started chasing the small ball, but as it didn't have actual fingers, no matter how close he got, he couldn't catch the Snitch.

“Stop,” Harry whispered to the figurine, “stop already.”

He drew a long vertical line right in front of the little, two-dimensional Chaser who bumped into it. It shook its fistless arm angrily. Harry quickly added a tiny round palm and a few fingers. The stick man looked at its hand then waved and started chasing the fast, little ball again.

“Yes!” Ron hissed quietly, when the little man finally caught the ball and held it up victoriously.

“Is there a problem, Mr. Weasley?” Umbridge smiled daintily.

“Nothing, professor.” Ron coughed. “I just sneezed.”

Harry tried to repress his snort by covering his mouth. Dean looked back again and smiled, Umbridge didn't see his face.

“Mr. Potter?”

“I think I might be coming down with the cold, too, Professor.” Harry answered faintly, coughing as well. “I hope it’s not catching, though.”

Then Dean coughed, too. “It probably is.” He said.

This time Harry’s snorting laughter was unmistakable, however he did try to the cover it up as coughing again.

“Other teachers may tolerate this kind of attitude, Mr. Potter, but I will not.” Umbridge stated standing up, what Harry only knew because he heard the scraping of the chair as she pushed it back. She walked closer to their desk and Harry immediately touched his wand to his book, murmuring “Evanesco.”

The Snitch disappeared with a pop and the Chaser vanished with a last wave of his hand, right before Umbridge snatched the book away from Harry.

“What did you just do, Potter?”

“Nothing, Professor.” Harry said with his most innocent expression.

Umbridge sneered then pointed her small wand at the book. “Reveal your secrets.” She exclaimed but the book remained as uninteresting as it ever had been. She dropped it and turned to Harry, her frog-like eyes almost seemed to pop and Harry noticed how a nerve started twitching under her right eyes. He coughed again.

“There is only one thing in the school worse than your rubbish, incompetent teachers, who should not be able to teach.” She pointed her wand at Harry who flexed his own fingers on his wand, which was already pointed at his professor under the table, ready to cast an Expelliarmus or a Protego.

“Which is, professor?” He asked with a smile that turned out quite dishonest even by Harry’s standards.

“This insufferable, unhelpful, intolerant student body.” She splattered viciously. “But I’m not surprised by that, with the education you were receiving in the past, it is, honestly, not a surprise that you are almost without exception a band of liars, cheaters and mischief-makers.” She turned around looking at all the faces that were staring at her. Malfoy’s grin did not fade and Harry knew why. Malfoy belong to one of those exceptions. “Look around you, can’t you see? The Ministry has been trying to help you, stir you towards a brighter future, away from the dim-witted half-breeds and old, senile fools. Can’t you see?”

“The Ministry is only trying to control us.” Harry murmured quietly looking at his desk. “And there’s nothing wrong with our teachers. There is of course, always...” He raised his gaze and it met Umbidge’s sharp, repulsed look. “... an exception.”

Hermione gasped beside him but Harry smiled as Umbridge’s face contorted into a furious expression. She held the wand lower slightly in shock probably, but then it rose again so close to Harry it almost knocked down his glasses.

“Your teachers are-“ Umbridge started outraged but Harry cut in.

“Good. At least the ones I know. Professor McGonagall is simply brilliant; no one knows better the plants than Professor Sprout; Professor Flitwick can charm away everything and make it seem easy. They teach us the theory and then we are to learn the practical side of it, too. Even Snape is good when it comes to Potions, no one would say otherwise.”

Umbridge snorted ugly, as if a big fly got stuck in her throat. “Oh please. The only reason that lowlife Slytherin was allowed back in this school was because Dumbledore needs him for his master plan. That overgrown bat!” She yelled. “His arrogance is unbelievable considering he is only one of Dumbledore’s little puppets and nothing more. I know Potioneers who do a hundred times better work than that incompetent, hideous creature.”

Harry could feel his blood boil. Though Snape and him wanted to kill each other on a good day, Harry though Umbridge, of all people, calling Snape a hideous creature was a bit too much. The other descriptions were so obviously just judgemental assumptions that Harry couldn't even take them seriously. Since when was Snape even considered as an easily manipulated man, not to mention a bad Potioneer? Harry would never believe it, not after their second year when Snape brew the Mandrake potions that brought back all the petrified students.

His hands tensed on his wand. He noticed from the corner of his eyes how the smile disappeared from Malfoy’s face, but then Harry’s mouth opened and words flooded out, and he didn't even realize what he was about to say until it was out. “He’s an excellent Potioneer, the best one this school has ever seen!” Harry shouted back fiercely. He didn't know from where this sudden urge to protect Snape’s carrier had come. If they talked about Dumbledore or McGonagall it would be understandable, but Snape? He didn't have time to consider it however, the words kept coming and it just felt so good to contradict Umbridge in any way that he brushed away his concern and just went with it. “He’s intelligent and knows Potions more than anyone!”

“He knows nothing, boy! He’s just a stupid puppet nothing more, and he will be the third one I’ll get rid of after that fraud and the dumb half-giant!” Umbridge all but screamed, her wand and face so close to Harry that he could feel the saliva drops fall on his skin.

Disgusted and out of control, Harry jumped up and snarled ferociously, “You bitch!”

“Detention, Potter!” Umbridge shriek, her voice high-pitched, her hand shaking from fury.

Harry, wand drawn and pointing at Professor Umbridge, stared at her, barely believing what he had just said. A part of his mind noted that his hand was perfectly still, not even a small tremor ran through it, though his heart was beating fast and he was slightly panting.

Hermione tugged at his arm and pulled him back down onto his chair.

“You just lost hundred points to your House, Mr. Potter.” Umbridge drawled. “And gained yourself an appointment with me every evening for this upcoming week.” She added with a mellifluous smile. She turned around and wobbled back to her desk and sat down as if nothing had happened. “Return to your books, please.” She asked in her girlish voice.

Harry sat silently and stared at his desk. “Did I just get detention for protecting Snape?” He asked finally.

“Yeah mate.” Ron answered, clearly not understand what just happened either.

Harry sighed heavily and rubbed the red ‘I must not tell lies’ line that was already engraved in the back of his hand. “Oh shit.”

Chapter Text

Harry wandered alone in the dark corridors, not even considering where he was or what he was doing at all.

That bitch.

He didn’t feel sorry for himself, he was sort of used to the physical pain now, but the others; those first year students he had seen yesterday, who did nothing wrong only ran, laughing in the corridors…They shouldn’t have been punished this badly.

He stopped at a large window and looked outside. The red tinted window mirrored his feelings exactly. He was angry, he was bloody angry at that… crazy, insane woman. His fist clenched and the pain returned to his sore left hand. He gazed at it. Great, it had started bleeding again. He let out an irritated huff and stared out the window again.

“Potter, what on earth are you doing here at this hour?” A slightly surprised, fuming, cold voice spoke from the darkness of the corridor. Harry turned his head towards where the voice came from but already knew exactly whom it belonged to.

“Professor Snape, I was in detention with Professor Umbridge.”

“And can you not find your way back to your room?” Snape stepped closer.

Harry, only then, looked around and noticed he was nowhere near to the Gryffindor towers, but actually on the other side of the castle. His surprise must have been written on his face as Snape sneered when he sighed, “Obviously not…”

“So you got detention again, Potter. Clearly you are unable to sit still on your arse, aren't you?” Severus asked smirking. Harry’s jaw dropped slightly at the wording Snape used. Looked like being in the middle of a dark and deserted corridor way past midnight, made his professor act more freely.

“You know me, Sir.” He said, with a hint of laughter in his voice.

“Ah, yes, I do. What have you done this time? Speaking the name of the Dark Lord in front of her, or simply just stating he’s returned?” Snape raised an eyebrow, knowing well about Harry’s past attempts at calling his teacher’s attention at a certain problem called Voldemort.

Harry smiled, and then he turned towards the window again. Leaning on the sill, he answered.

“Not exactly. Professor Umbridge said this school is full of… ‘rubbish, incompetent teachers who should not be allowed to teach’.” Harry cited.

“Did she now?” Snape said not so surprised, folding his hands.

“She also mentioned… your disabilities in teaching.” Harry went on quietly.

“That bitch.” Snape hissed.

“I said the same thing.” Harry laughed, still looking out the windows. “She didn’t really appreciate it…”

Snape’s eyes opened widely. “You did what?” He asked, surprised.

“Well she said you’re incompetent, you know nothing and… what was it?” Harry thought for a moment. “Ah yeah I remember; your ‘arrogance is unbelievable considering you are only one of Dumbledore’s little puppets’. I merely disagreed with her. Quite loudly though…”

“Potter, were you defending my honour? How noble of you.” Snape said dryly.

Harry looked at him, his eyes shined honestly in the slight moonlight. “Sir, you might hate me, and maybe we don’t have the most perfect… student-teacher relationship in history, but I do think your abilities are brilliant and your intelligence is far greater than that stupid bi-… excuse me, I meant to say than Professor Umbridge’s intelligence will ever be. I have never doubted the fact that you are one of the most exceptional wizards living today.” One of the evilest, too. He added to himself.

Severus remained in silence for a few minutes, thanking Merlin the boy was looking out the window again.

“So, yes, I called her a bitch and told her she was seriously wrong. Then I got detention.”

“Tut, tut, Potter.” Snape said in a low voice that sent shivers down Harry’s spine. “You never know when to shut up…” he went on, shaking his head slightly.

“Potter, your hand.” Snape groaned quietly when his gaze wandered to Harry’s bleeding hand.

“It’s nothing, Sir.” Harry replied instantly, not even looking at it. He knew exactly how it looked. He’d seen it a few times already.

“It’s bleeding, Potter.” Harry only shrugged at the comment.

“Show me.” Severus ordered, reaching out his right hand.

“It is not necessary, Sir.”

“It was not a wish but an order. Give me your hand, Potter. I’m not going to say it again.” Snape said coldly.

Harry reached out his hand and Snape took it. Thanks to the moonlight he managed to read the ‘I must not tell lies’ line, however it was still bleeding pretty badly.

But Harry wasn’t interested in the scar anymore. The feeling of Snape’s hand on his somehow made his guts twist and also other parts of him were feeling…weird, so to speak. Being this close to Snape and not being terrified was something new, Harry had to admit, but feeling this warm, this aroused, just by his touch couldn’t mean anything good. Looking at the professor’s dark eyes, he remembered how he felt when he first stared at those ink black eyes: like looking at a tunnel, an endless tunnel.

He wanted to go through that tunnel, he thought and he found himself terrified by that thought. He jerked his hand out from Snape’s, saying, “I told you; it’s nothing…”

“Follow me, Potter.” Severus turned around and walked a few steps before noticing that Harry wasn’t coming after him.

“Potter, are you deaf?” He said irritated. “Why do I have to tell you everything twice? Follow. Me. Now.”

“But Sir…” Harry started hesitantly but Snape cut in.

“Potter, do you want me to give you detention for disobeying my orders or will you finally move?” Snape huffed and started walking again. Harry, after a second pause, walked quickly after him.

They wandered in the dark castle and Harry didn’t really pay attention to where exactly they were going. He thought they were going to the Gryffindor Tower, but why was Snape walking him there, was still a mystery to him.

Suddenly, Snape stopped, turned around, and grabbed Harry by his shirt, literally throwing him next to a statue and covering his mouth with his hand. Harry was already left speechless but then Severus whispered “Silence” into his ear and made him moan silently.

Being this close to the man really wasn’t an usual thing and the worst was, Harry realized with wide open eyes, that because of their proximity he could smell Snape’s scent. He took a deep breath through his nose and with the well needed oxygen the cool, fresh scent also invaded his mind. It was like diving into the depth of the ocean, breathing through water, enjoying as the silky water surrounded his body. His eyes opened even wider with panic and he felt himself hyperventilating which just made everything even worse. With every gulp of air, the scent went deep inside him, affecting not just his mind but his whole body as well. Even the critical places.

Severus felt the boy fidgeting between him and the wall as he heard the approaching footsteps. He pressed Harry deeper into the cold surface, blocking him with his whole body. He leaned to Potter’s ear again and whispered, “Don’t move.” This of course made Harry even more aroused. He dropped his head back, trying to calm himself, but being this close to Snape didn’t helped him at all.

When a woman dressed in pink stepped out from the corner they both froze in motion. Harry even forgot to breathe until Umbridge walked away. Thanks to the marvel statue next to them they weren’t noticed but he could imagine how much trouble they would have been in, if that bitch had caught them in the dark, in this exact position, pressed firmly against each other.

Severus let go of Harry and stepped back. He looked at the boy who seemed to be in a bit of shock. “Follow me, and don’t make any noise.” He whispered almost inaudibly, causing more shivers to run down Harry’s back, neck and arms. The boy only nodded and walked after Snape as silently as he could. He didn’t trust his voice to say anything now.

Snape opened a door and let Harry in.

Harry looked around and thought this must be Snape’s private room. It looked…nice actually. Black and dark green colours ruled the room but it wasn’t as dark as the classroom in the dungeons and not as cold either.

“Sit.” Severus ordered and Harry did as he was told. He sat down on the dark, bottle green leather couch and said nothing. The room was filled with that inebriating scent he felt before and he knew if he were to speak, his voice would be trembling and most likely, he wouldn’t make any sense at all. So he just stared at Snape as he started to pour different liquids together, making some kind of potion, probably.

“Potter, I presume when Umbridge invites you to a little writing practice, she makes you tea, right?”

“Yes, Sir.” Harry said, trying to calm himself.

“Do you take it?”

“Never, Sir.” Harry smiled, remembering Moody.

“So you’re not as stupid as you look like.” Severus nodded, turning back to Harry. Harry simply smiled at the comment. It didn’t feel as insulting as usual.

“Do you know what that is, Potter?” Severus asked, pointing at a small cauldron half way full of transparent liquid.

“I assume not water.”

“Your deductive methods seem to have improved, Potter.” Severus sneered at him. “That indeed is not water. It is called Veritaserum. Do you know what it is for?”

“I remember you threatening me with it last year, yes.” Harry smiled. “It’s a potion which makes you tell the truth.”

“Exactly. I am making it for Umbridge. However it is not ready yet.” Severus said calmly, leaning against his table, looking into Harry’s eyes now.

“But… Sir, why would you do that?” Harry cried surprised, almost forgetting about his slightly aching groin and other problems related to it. But just almost.

Snape snorted. “Because Potter, not everyone can allow themselves to act as reckless, stupid and arrogant as you and call Umbridge a bitch in front of the whole class. When it comes to us, humble, puny mortals, we have to obey when receiving orders.”

The potion Snape was previously preparing started sizzling and turned a deep purple. Snape poured it into a little bowl and reached for a thin, green scarf. Then he walked towards Harry and kneeled in front of the sitting boy.

Harry looked astonished and felt his jaw dropping as he watched Snape kneeling in front of him, almost between his legs. That sight made his heart beat just a bit faster. Several disturbing pictures appeared in front of his inner eye, all of them including Snape and the different stages of an extremely satisfying blowjob. Harry had to suppress a moan, which would have sounded quite feverish if he didn’t stop it in time.

“Don’t worry, I’m not going to do anything…naughty to you.” Snape said, looking into the mischievously shining green eyes. To his surprise Harry’s cheeks flushed and his eyes widened, but he didn’t say a word.

“Disappointed, eh Potter?” Severus smiled.

“More like surprised, Sir.” Harry pulled himself together and answered before all his dignity flew out the window. He leaned back, trying to make the distance between them a bit bigger and scratched his neck with his left hand.

The next moment he saw a pair of eyes only inches before him. The eyes were black as the deepest, longest tunnel ever to have existed. The feeling of wanting to walk through that tunnel, exploring everything in it, came back with an astonishing force.

“Surprised, is it? Why, what did you expect me to do, when I kneeled down?” Snape’s voice was really low and kind of husky and Harry wished he could go, because he felt like he was going to explode. He felt Snape’s hand creep upwards on his own, which was still at his neck. He felt gentle finger’s rushing over his scar, before suddenly grabbing his hand a bit too firmly and pulling it back forward.

 Severus laughed at Harry’s expression as the boy realized he was only being toyed with. Severus drank a bit from the potion he had made then, still holding Harry’s bleeding hand, he said to the angry boy, “This might feel a little uncomfortable.”

Before Harry had the slightest chance to ask what exactly would feel even more uncomfortable than being dragged into Snape’s room and being aroused several times during a half an hour period, he felt a warm, wet tongue sliding over his hand, cleaning his injury. Now he knew the answer.

He wanted to jerk away his hand as fast as possible, but his professor was way stronger than he thought.

“Ease your struggle Potter, or you’ll never escape me.” Snape said, smirk on his face as he looked up at Harry, his mouth still floating over the boy’s skin.

The danger in Snape’s voice and the obvious threat it carried made Harry’s erection even harder. He wasn’t able to speak or move, only his eyes followed Snape’s every motion as he opened his mouth and licked his skin over and over again. That tongue, the wet, velvet flesh on his cold hand made him shiver, goose-bumps rose all over his body and he had to bite into his lips to restrain his wild moans. No matter what, he wasn’t able to stop looking at the man. His sight shifted between the endless, black eyes radiating such wildness and the unbelievably soft mouth moving on his skin.

Harry always knew he was… interested in this man, his dangerous, dark aura drowned him but he never imagined his interest was so deep. He lusted for this person in front of him, knowing precisely how ridiculous and hazardous it would be to act according to his needs.

Severus licked the sentence one more time just to make sure it wasn’t bleeding anymore and then let go of Harry’s hand. He placed the green scarf into the potion until it was wet enough, then placed the scarf on Harry’s skin, folding it around his hand like a bandage.

“Leave it there for the rest of the night. Even for tomorrow if it’s possible.” He said, then simply stood up and walked away with the rest of the healing potion. Harry was left speechless, sitting on the dark green couch like a statue. He was still staring at the point where Severus had been kneeling a few seconds ago.

He hated Snape now, even more than any time before, for playing with him like this. He wanted nothing more than to leave this place, this man, and if he was lucky enough, this feeling behind as well.

“Khm…” He tried to make his voice sound a bit stronger. Despite of his shaking legs, he managed to stand up. “Uhm… Thanks…Professor” he groaned, and stepped to the door.

“Where do you think you’re going, Potter?” Came a dark, rough voice from the other side of the room.

Harry felt ice cold dread and fiery waves of excitement rush over and over his spine, reaching certain points he didn’t even know existed. Was it time to pay for the treatment Snape had given to him? Another thought which shouldn’t have felt as arousing as it actually did.

“Back to Gryffindor tower, Sir.” Although he meant it as a statement, it sounded somehow like a question. What was he doing? He wasn’t going to ask permission from Snape to go back to his room, it would be nonse-

“All by yourself?” Came the arousing, dark voice again, this time from right behind him. He quickly turned around and found himself facing Snape.

“…” was all he was able to say, as the professor placed a hand on the door, right next to his right ear.

Harry’s heart rumbled in his chest like one thousand drums, beating the rhythm of his feelings. Excitement, astonishment, and fear mixed into one single emotion in him, leaving him once again speechless and motionless as he stared into those black eyes.

“Exactly how do you intend to leave, not knowing the password?” Severus almost whispered as he placed his other hand on door as well.

Harry gaped, his mouth fell open and stayed that way. For a second he thought about how easy it would be for someone to curse him right now, and then some tiny voice in his head said that Snape would protect him. Yeah, sure… but who would protect him from Snape?

“I need a password in order to let you go.”

Harry forced his fogged mind to think of something, anything that could be the perfect password and let him out of this situation. Hundreds of words rushed through his mind, spells, names of different potions, words in Parseltongue but none of them seemed compatible enough.

Iftahhh yaaa sssssimmsssssimm*” Harry tried to joke it away with the well known expression. He also used Parseltongue, hoping for a bonus point; he didn’t get it.

Severus moved as fast as a python and grabbed both of Harry’s hands, raising them over his head, pushing them into the door, and holding them firmly there with his left hand. His right meanwhile grabbed his wand and pressed it into Harry’s neck, right over his pulse.

“Funny Potter, but incorrect. You have one more chance, then…” Severus whispered into Harry’s ear with a smirk and Harry moaned.

Pressed to a door, immobile, without a wand, with Snape only inches away, Harry fucking moaned. That ‘then’ made his erection pulse under the several layers of clothing and he couldn’t restrain himself. Half of him wanted to know what that ‘then’ meant, with all the threat and darkness it promised, but his other half was terrified to find out.

He tried to struggle against Snape but he already knew it was in vain. The man was strong; he experienced it in the dark corridor as well.

“I already warned you once, ease your struggle or you will never escape me.” Snape whispered pressing his whole body against the boy. His voice, low, dark, and dangerous, felt like it would creep under Harry’s skin and slide around his heart, caressing with a firm touch.

“Please… Snape…” He groaned, eyes closed, panting heavily as a sudden wave of hot air tickled his neck. He didn’t mean it as a password, he completely forgot that he wanted to get out, the only thing he needed right now, was that voice to speak, those hands to caress and those lips… to kiss.

The next moment he found himself sitting on the corridor floor, with an evilly grinning Snape towering over him.

“In a hurry to get back to your tower, eh Potter?” He sneered walking by Harry. “And it’s Professor Snape to you.”

Harry stood up quickly, trying to regain his long lost control. The door was open; he must have fallen out of the room when it opened up. “Professor Snape, I can find my way back to the tower alone.” He said, acting braver and controlled than he felt.

Severus stopped dead and turned around, his robe swirling around him. With two quick steps he was standing right before Harry again.

“This is not courtesy, Potter, I am your teacher and I won't let you wander the corridors alone at one in the morning.” He stated, and Harry noticed he used the same tone as in the classroom.

“I’m used to it, Sir.” Harry said actually feeling braver now, as he was out of that room, further from that inebriating, amazing scent.

“Umbridge is patrolling tonight.” Snape remarked coolly.

“Oh…” Harry groaned. He didn’t know that.

“Precisely.” Severus sneered. “Now, follow me. And don’t make me say that again or I swear I will take you to that bitch myself.”

They walked on the silent corridors, not using any light, being afraid of meeting Umbridge. They didn’t talk, they didn’t even look at each other. Well, Severus didn’t look at Harry, however Harry wasn’t able to take his eyes off of his teacher. He watched him move as the black robe floated after him, thinking about how desperately he wanted that man.

“Why are you staring, Potter?”

“I’m not.” Harry protested, looking at the ground now.

“Don’t you dare lie to me again.” Snape said casually.

“I’m not l-” Harry didn’t have time to finish. Snape’s wand was pointed in the middle of his face.

“You were saying?” Severus said in a low voice.

Harry gulped. “I was not staring at you…merely looking.”

“And why exactly were you looking at me?” Severus asked him, walking towards him.

‘He looks exactly like a hunting black panther.’ Harry thought to himself. ‘That makes me… the prey.’ He gulped again.

“I was just looking at your… back, Sir?”

“Are you interested in my back, Potter?” Severus asked with a very weird smile on his face. He must have found the situation quite funny.

When a picture of him thrusting into Severus’ ass showed up in Harry’s mind, he felt like someone just punched him in the gut.

“Khm… No, Sir.” Please have mercy on me, he begged.

“The Fat Lady is at the end of the corridor. Go to bed. If I run into you in the corridors one more time, I will give you something much more painful than that.” Severus noted after a moment, nodding towards Harry’s bandaged hand. “Go.”

“Yes, Sir. Good night.” Harry obeyed immediately, saying thanks to all the deities he knew about.

After a few steps, Snape’s voice stopped him. It was that dark, dangerous voice again. He couldn’t wait to be alone in his room, and finally take care of his hard erection.

“I told you not to lie to me. Twenty points from Gryffindor.” Snape said and then walked away. He disappeared quickly in the darkness.

Harry wasn’t able to move for several minutes.

Chapter Text

I must not tell lies.

Harry wrote it down again. A whole page was already full of this one sentence.

I must not tell lies.       

He looked at Umbridge. She was drinking tea; the kittens on the plates were joyfully playing behind her.

I must not tell lies.

His hand was aching with every word he wrote, but he couldn’t care less.

I must not tell lies.

Don’t you dare lie to me again.’ A voice said in his mind, making him fidget in his seat.

I must not tell lies.

I told you not to lie to me.’ How could he know he was lying? How was it possible that that man knew him so well?

I must not tell lies.

He looked at the scarf, which was now folded around his right hand, giving him strength to survive this terrible night. Just the rest if this night and it would be finally over. It was Friday night, the last day of his detention.

I must not tell lies.

The green scarf. A conversation from before arose in his mind, and suddenly he was back in the Great Hall with Ron and Hermione.

 

“What’s that?” Ron pointed at the scarf from across the table.

“My hand was bleeding, so I put this around it.” Harry lied.

“Let me see.” Hermione, sitting next to Ron, grabbed his hand before he could do anything. “I’ve never seen this on you before. Look, there are initials on it: S S?” Harry’s heart missed a beat. He hadn’t noticed it before.

“I bought it a long time ago.” He explained nonchalantly.

“Don’t lie, Potter.” A voice whispered behind him so quietly only he could hear it. Harry spilled his drink as he turned around as quickly as he could.

“Professor Snape.” He stared at the man in front of him. Ron and Hermione remained in silence, however Hermione didn’t let go of his hand.

“Perfect observation, as always.” Snape looked at Harry, then at his scarf then back at Harry. Then he walked away.

“What the hell was that?” Ron groaned looking at the professor.

“I don’t know.” Responded Harry. ‘But I want to find out.’ He thought to himself.

 

Someone knocked on the door, dragging him back to the present.

I must not tell lies.

“Enter.” Umbridge said, placing her cup gently down.

I must not tell lies.

He heard to door creek open.

I must n-

“You wanted to see me, Dolores?” Severus looked at Umbridge then at Harry. He noticed the green scarf on his right and the badly bleeding wound on his left. He shook his head lightly and gave Harry a look, which said, ‘You can't be serious.’

“Yes, Severus.” She uttered the name as if she were talking about an infectious disease. “I want to know when you will be ready with the potion you are making for me.”

The Veritaserum, Harry thought.

“Soon.” Snape answered, slightly irritated. “Tomorrow, maybe. As I told you, it is quite a delicate and difficult potion to make. For it to be useful, you will have to wait a little bit, Dolores.”

“Alright.” Umbridge nodded and smiled at Snape. Harry felt the urge to vomit. Snape must have felt the same way as he raised an eyebrow.

“If you don’t need me anymore, I’ll leave. I see you have an important lesson to teach to Potter here.” He smiled.

“Oh yes, you can leave.” Umbridge waved towards the door, letting Snape go as if he were just a servant. That made Harry unnecessarily angry. He pinned the quill just a bit too hard to the paper. It broke with a nasty crack.

“Ah, excuse me, Professor.” He murmured. Snape was looking at him and Harry was sure he knew exactly why that quill ended up broken.

“Don’t worry Potter, I have another one.” Umbridge smiled evilly and handed another quill to Harry. “Continue your work.” She ordered while Snape closed the door behind him.

 

o.O.o

 

An hour later, Harry stepped out of form the room with a sigh. It was over. Finally, it was over.

He took a look at his hand; it was bleeding quite badly. He was sure that would leave a scar behind. He started walking down the corridors towards the Gryffindor tower. His thoughts were swirling, however around a dark man.

He turned around many corners and left behind several dark statues. He chose the longest way back to the tower; he needed some time to clear his mind. Suddenly a shadow in front of him seemed to move. He looked up and saw someone standing in the middle of the corridor.

“Follow me.” Instructed the figure and Harry went after him without a single word this time.

He stepped into Snape’s room several minutes later. “Sit.” Came the order behind him as Snape walked to his desk and grabbed the bowl with the potion already made up in it. Harry’s groin twitched. Not again. Not this.

He sat down on the couch and tried to relax, tried to think of something else, especially not the next few seconds when Snape would try to heal him again.

“Do you voluntarily sign up for detention, just to meet me afterwards?” Snape queried with his back on Harry.

“This was the last day of my one week detention, Sir.” Harry said, hoping that maybe last night wouldn’t repeat itself. After a few seconds, he spoke again.

“Sir, may I ask you something?”

“If I say no, will you shut up?” Severus responded, leaning against his desk facing Harry now.

“Probably not, Sir.” Harry smiled.

Snape huffed, shaking his head. “Go on then, ask.”

“The Veritaserum, Sir… It is ready, isn’t it?” Harry pointed to the cauldron in the corner.

Severus smirked. For a second, Harry thought he wouldn’t answer, but then he said, “So you noticed.”

“But then why…?” Harry didn’t need to explain what he meant, it was clear to both of them.

“Think Potter! That bitch insulted me. No one messes with me and gets away with it.” Oh yes, Harry was sure of that.

“No one?” He asked cockily. What was with him?

Severus looked at him darkly as he started walking towards the couch Harry was sitting on. “No, Potter, no one.” He knelt down in front of Harry again. “And believe me, you don’t want to forget that.”

There was something, Harry was sure he would never ever forget: the look in Snape’s eyes. That hungry, determined look he saw right now was engraved in his memory forever.

“I won't, Sir.” He said easily, although he wasn’t even sure his voice would work.

“Good.” Snape said then drank a bit from the potion. Harry knew exactly what was coming now but he didn’t do anything to prevent it. “Give me your hand, Harry.”

He reached out his hand. “Why are you calling me Harry?”

Severus took the hand in his and leant above it. “It is…” he said looking into Harry’s wide open eyes, and then let the tip of his tongue slide along the injured skin. “… your name after all, or am I mistaken?” He whispered gently, licking Harry’s wound again.

Harry felt his erection harden and he wasn’t able to answer. Hearing his name from those lips, felt much more arousing than it should. Actually, it shouldn’t even have any effect on him but he felt his heart already beating franticly.

As Snape’s lips moved over his skin, suddenly, his right hand started moving on its own. He slid his fingers into Snape’s long, black hair.

He heard a groan and this time, it wasn’t his.

Severus felt the finger’s in his hair, gripping him firmly, pressing him down on Harry’s hand. He opened his mouth and his tongue went along the injury again. Then he lightly sucked the skin in, which made the boy moan. He continued harder, pressing his tongue deeper in, sucking wilder and he couldn’t believe it when he heard the boy’s fervent gasps. So you like it hard, he thought to himself before his hand slithered on Harry’s thigh, lightly caressing the boy.

Harry dropped his head on the couch, his shoulders tensing back, his back arching away from the couch, trying to get as close to Snape as he could. He knew his erection was clearly visible and Snape would have to be blind not to notice it.

He looked down, eyes wide open from excitement, and his gaze met with Snape’s. The man was smirking, the evil grin on his face told Harry that this was most likely the end; he was reckless, he let himself do too much and now he was about to pay the price.

Snape’s left hand slid to Harry’s hand in his hair and grabbed it firmly, pulling it down. He placed the hand on the couch and tried to unknot the scarf on it. Within less than a minute the green cloth was bathed in the potion, while Severus gave tiny but very luscious kisses on Harry’s hand, moving lower. His lips weren’t caressing Harry’s wound anymore, but lower, his fingers.

When Snape reached the tip of his fingers Harry thought, it was finally over, his electrifying torture had ended but no, Severus had something else in mind. His mouth opened and he took Harry’s middle finger into his mouth, his hot, wet tongue sliding over it, teeth scratchingit lightly. Snape then slid the finger deeper into his mouth and started sucking it. Harry didn’t understand how such cold eyes could radiate so much heat and make him burn with an invisible fire.

Severus took the finger out of his mouth and turned Harry’s hand with a swift, slightly painful move, which made the boy gasp in pleasure. He held Harry’s palm firmly, not giving him a chance to get away while his right hand grabbed the arm of the pullover Harry was wearing and pushed it up, creating new areas to explore.

Harry couldn’t do anything else besides gasp and groan as he felt the raspy tongue sliding up and over his arm, raw, forceful teeth dashing into his skin, and soft, tender lips kissing goodbye to the pain. His legs opened up, giving a place for Snape’s hips to press against him. He felt again a hand on his thigh moving excruciatingly slowly towards his aching erection but not touching it yet.

Severus crept upwards until he reached Harry’s bare neck then his ear. Driving the tip of his tongue along the shell of Harry’s ear, he whispered roughly to the boy.

“You seem to be on the edge, Potter.”

Only a harsh moan came from Harry as a reply. Severus seemed to like it.

“Although I have done nothing to you yet…”

NOTHING? Harry’s mind screamed through the thick fog. Was that nothing to Snape? He almost came just from his voice a second ago.

Suddenly he felt much more colder and he realized it was because Snape leant back. His eyes shot open and he saw Snape twisting the unnecessary wetness out of the scarf. He made a nice bandage around Harry’s hand just as he had done yesterday. Harry was in a sort of shock as he watched Snape’s fingers moving on his hand without the slightest of erotic indication.

That’s not fair. That’s just so fucking not fair…

Without a word Snape stood up and placed the potion back on the shelf.

“Shall we go? I need to get back to patrolling.” And with that, Severus was out of the room.

Harry was still stunned but he followed his professor anyway. He felt like this was the calmness before the storm and after this, he wasn’t sure he wanted to see what would happened when the storm came. He closed the door behind him and rushed quietly after Snape.

They walked two steps apart from each other. Harry didn’t dare to speak, he wasn’t sure about anything anymore. After his hand slid into Snape’s hair, he thought he was about to die. But he didn’t and his evil professor only became a slightly more fervent with his movements, sucking, kissing him until his mind became some fluid miasma in his head. And then, just like that, he stopped. What the hell was going on? Harry didn’t understand it. But he had the slightest idea that he was only played with. And he didn’t like it at all.

Snape turned right on the next corner and Harry knew they had reached the Fat Lady.

They stopped in front of the picture and Harry said the password. The painting moved away and Harry turned towards Snape.

“Well, thanks… for everything, Sir.”      

“Don’t be so grateful, I barely gave you anything.” Severus sneered at him. “Maybe next time.”

“There won't be a next time, Professor.” Harry said lightly.

“I know you,” Snape huffed turning away. “There definitely will be a next time. ‘Night, Potter.” He said walking away.

“Professor Snape?” Harry asked with a smile.

Snape didn’t say anything, didn’t even turn around, he just stopped dead indicating he was listening to him. That was all Harry needed.

He snuck up to Snape, silently as possible and he knew he managed to surprise him as he felt Snape tense against him when he pressed their bodies together and slid his hands under Snape’s arms. One slithered over Snape’s chest and grabbed into his clothes the other wandered downwards. Fuck playing around.

“You do realize you make me hard every night, don’t you?” Harry whispered teasingly into the other man’s ear driving his fingers firmly over Snape’s groin. He was surprised to feel that he wasn’t the only one hiding an enormous, hard erection. “Sweet dreams, Severus.” Harry chuckled.

Severus turned around just in time to see the painting close.

He was smiling evilly.

“This is not the end, Potter.” He murmured, walking away.

Chapter Text

On the next morning, Severus woke up with a hard on. Sweet dreams, huh? Definitely. He took a quick shower and rushed to the Great Hall to have a cup of coffee before the noisy mass of students arrived, not letting him enjoy his much needed caffeine intake. He had been patrolling until three in the morning and then he didn’t get any sleep thanks to that bastard kid. He couldn’t sleep because he kept smelling Harry’s clear scent all on himself and the boy’s taste on his tongue.

He walked among the line of tables, the smells of the different breakfasts sneaked into his nose, leaving him starving. But food wasn’t the only thing he was starving for. He smiled to himself as he recalled what happened last night in his room and then in the corridor. That boy, moaning under him without control, and then grabbing his erection in front of the Gryffindor tower, not caring who might walk that way… That arrogant, reckless brat.

“’Morning Minerva, Dumbledore.” He greeted his colleagues, taking his seat next to Minerva.

“Good morning, Severus. Just in time for the sausage; try it, it is unbelievably delicious.” Dumbledore smiled at him. How could he be so cheerful every damn morning? Severus wondered. Well, maybe he didn’t have wild, erotic dreams about one of his students…

“Thank you, but I think I will remain with only my coffee.” He nodded with a hint of a smile, pouring the liquid life into his mug.

“You need to eat something, Severus.” Minerva joined to the conversation. “Eat some eggs at least.”

“My dear…” Severus smiled. “I have an apple, is that acceptable?”

“Well, better than nothing, I guess.” Minerva gave him a strict side look then grinned when Severus took a nice green apple from the plate. She seemed to eye the apple, measuring it up as if wondering how much nutrition it contained; then again, she could have simply wanted to just watch and see if Severus would eat the fruit. Severus looked suspiciously at the woman next to him as he bit into the green apple slowly. Minerva nodded and continued her breakfast.

Severus shook his head and murmured “Mother hen.” This made Dumbledore snort, and laugh out loud. Minerva seemed to blush as she flashed a very strict look at Severus, who was also smirking now.

“Call me whatever you want Severus Snape, but don’t forget that I’m merely looking out for you.” Minerva said sternly.

“I am a grown man, I don’t need to be looked after, Minerva.” He replied, highlighting every word, giving a nasty look to his neighbour.

“Oh, is that right? If you are a grown man, then tell me;, when exactly was the last time you slept with someone, for instance?” Minerva asked, calmly drinking her herbal tea.

“Excuse me?! Where the hell did that come from?” Severus cried quietly but desperately, coughing hard from the hot coffee, which ended up in his lungs thanks to the well timed question. He looked at Albus for some support but the light blue eyes shone cheerfully. The bastard was enjoying this.

“Well, as a healthy, adult male, I am sure you have a high necessity for…”

“Please don’t say it, please don’t…” Severus cut in.

“…sex…,”

“And of course you said it…” Severus moaned painfully, with a hand covering his eyes.

“…which needs to be fulfilled. There is no need for blushing Severus, this is the natural way of living as humans.” Minerva jeered.

“Oh, you are mistaken Minerva, I am not blushing. On the contrary, I become paler from every word you say, actually.”

“And why is that Severus, I wonder. May it be that I touched a sensitive spot of yours?” She asked, teasing, smiling at Albus.

“Minerva,” Severus said slowly, “I consider you as a friend, but Merlin help me, if you don’t leave me alone I might surprise you with a very deadly potion during lunch today.”

“Oh Severus, you would never do such a thing.” Minerva smirked. “Why don’t you let me introduce…”

“NO! Absolutely, resolutely, definitely no. Not even over my dead body.” Severus flared up. “I am not willing to suffer through another one of your attempts to find me a man, never again. I still haven’t forgiven you for last time.”

“For Merlin’s sake Severus! It was three years ago! You should let me…” Minerva cried.

“No Minerva, I certainly should not let you do anything. At all.”

“Why,” Dumbledore raised an eyebrow. “What happened last time?”

“Go on Minerva, tell Dumbledore here about your last attempt to humiliate me.” Severus waved with his hand.

“Nothing happened Albus, it wasn’t humiliating at all, he’s just overreacting.”

“Am I, Minerva? I wonder why? Maybe because you said to a man, whom I loathed, to approach me bravely with romantic feelings as I like him very much indeed. Or because you, after my first attempt at sending that arse to hell, invited me for a dinner and when I got there I found you nowhere to be seen however that stupid, unintelligent, egoistical bastard was waiting there for me.” Severus said sarcastically, sneering.

“I merely tried to bring you some… khm…happiness.” Minerva said blushing.

“Happiness? Happiness??!!” Severus cried quietly but painfully, staring at Minerva. “You really think I would find happiness with a man like that? Do I look that shallow or desperate?”

“Merlin no, Severus!” Minerva pulled herself together. “I just thought…”

“What? A shag would come handy for me?” Severus actually seemed angry now.

“For Merlin’s beard, Severus, we are at the table!” Dumbledore said, but he couldn’t hide his smile. “Who was this man anyway?”

After a moment of complete, anxious silence, Snape spoke up so quietly Dumbledore thought he didn’t even speak at all. “Gilderoy Lockhart.”

 The headmaster started laughing so hard, the whole Great Hall echoed his cheerful voice. Some of the students looked up and stared at him for a while but then they returned to their breakfast.

“Oh my dear… Oh Minerva, what have you done?” He asked, wiping tears from his eyes, still chuckling.

Severus shook his head lightly as he glanced at Minerva.

“All right, all right,” Minerva threw her knife and fork on the plate as she raised her hand in the air, surrendering. “I admit I made a slight mistake…”

“Slight?” Albus cried. “There is not another person, woman or man, less compatible with our Severus here.”

“Thank you.” Severus nodded gratefully.

“Alright then, big mistake. I made a huge, terrible mistake.” Minerva admitted, hiding her eyes behind her hand. “I don’t know what I thought, Severus. I’m so sorry.” She looked at the man next to her, who, to her surprise, was smiling now.

“Apology accepted. Just don’t ever do it again.” Severus sneered. After a moment he added smiling, “I still have nightmares about the night he visited me.” He closed his eyes in disgust. “I opened my door and there he was, wearing a revolting pink, fluffy nightgown, smiling like a brainless idiot and saying that he came to let me adore his beauty and glamour…” He said, massaging his temple.

“What did you do to him?” Minerva asked curiously.

“I hexed him out of my threshold, that’s what. He was lying unconsciously at the opposite wall for more than an hour.” Severus said simply. His tone suggesting that the man deserved what he got.

“But this lovely friend of mine… She is really…”

Severus looked at the magical ceiling, disbelieving. “What have I done to deserve you as a friend?” He moaned.

“That’s enough, Minerva.” Albus cut in, placing a hand gently over Minerva’s wrist. “You are embarrassing our friend here. And you know he’s not interested in anyone who is a ‘she’.”

Minerva nodded. “I still don’t understand how it happened. I always thought that Severus and little Lily Evans were...”

“Lily and I were best friends nothing more; I just don’t see why I’m explaining this yet again.” He sighed, turning his head sadly towards his empty plate. He still missed her so much.

“I remember you constantly staring at Sirius Black back in the old days but…” Albus started but Severus wasn’t listening anymore. He looked up, however he wasn’t seeing the students in front of him. How did this happen exactly? How did his sex life (or rather lack of sex life) become the morning topic? Shock and astonishment was seen on his face as he slowly, disbelievingly turned his head towards his friends. Friends? Who needs enemies with friends like these two?

Before Dumbledore could finish the sentence, Severus cut in.

“I would really appreciate if the two of you stopped talking about my sexual orientation moreover about me in general. Let’s talk about you, Minerva, when did you last have sex?” He asked suddenly, hoping that would make the mother hen shut up for a while. Well it did, however not exactly how he hoped.

Minerva blushed and Dumbledore stood up from the table with a sudden move. They didn’t dare look at the other while Dumbledore murmured “I’d rather go now.” Minerva simply nodded while her gaze was fixed on a sausage.

“You can't be serious. Oh dear Merlin.” Severus’ eyes widened as the revelation struck him and he stared at the headmaster’s back, which quickly disappeared behind a door. “Oh Merlin…” he repeated in shock.

“Shut up Severus and eat your apple.” Minerva said strictly.

Severus gave one more incredulous look to Minerva, who seemed to ignore his existence now. Thank Merlin for that but still... “Oh dear…”

He took one more bite from his apple as he let his eyes wander on the few students who were sitting in the Grand Hall. When his eyes reached the Gryffindor’s table, he was surprised to see familiar green eyes staring intensively at him.

Speaking about sex. He thought, taking another bite from the sweet fruit.

Harry was holding a peach in his right hand. He looked at Severus then back at the peach, giving the same hungry look for both of them. Then he took the fruit between his teeth and took a nip of it. A drop of the juice run along his jaw and finger, which he licked down slowly, not taking his eyes off of Severus. Then his tongue run along the sweet flesh of the fruit, licking the streaming drops before they could fall down. At that moment, Severus wished he could be that exact peach.

Harry smiled and ran a teasing thumb over his lower lip. There must have been some honeysweet juice left there because the next moment he put his finger into his mouth and slowly, cruelly slowly, his tongue slid over his skin and he drove the finger into his mouth.

Severus decided that it was time to leave before his erection became even more visible. He dropped the half eaten apple on his golden plate but then he couldn’t tear his gaze from Harry. The boy put down the peach and took a knife in his hand. Carefully, so as not to let the green scarf become peachy, he cut up the juicy fruit.

Severus put his elbow on the table and leaned forward. His pointing finger lightly massaged his temple, while his thumb was at his jaw. His middle finger slid between his lips, his tongue unconsciously licking it, while his teeth scratched it harshly.

The boy noticed his interest as he licked the whole length of the knife. Potter smirked as he put a piece of peach between his teeth, licking and sucking the honeysweet liquid. He went on piece after piece, eating up the fruit and Severus’ patience as well.

The professor reached out for his mug and while drinking a bit of his bitter coffee, he smirked at Harry over the edge of the mug. Harry saw it clearly and replied with a witty grin. Laughing, he dropped the last piece of peach into his mouth and stood up.

Severus did the same. After drinking the last of his coffee, he walked after Harry who just reached the huge door of the Great Hall. Severus went quickly after him, but when he stepped out to the hallway, he only managed to catch a glimpse of a dark robe disappearing behind a corner. He wasn’t sure if the robe belonged to Harry but as that was his only chance to maybe catch the boy, he walked that way.

Harry was standing in the middle of the deserted hallway, waiting just for him.

“Good Morning, Sir!” Harry greeted Snape from far away. “Did you sleep well, Sir?” He asked, teasing smile all over his face.

“Yes, indeed I did. My dreams were quite… pleasurable.” Snape replied with an expressionless face.

“And did you enjoy your breakfast, Sir? I found the peach truly delicious this morning.”

“Not Severus anymore, I see.” Snape remarked calmly with burning eyes. Harry couldn’t stop smiling. “The peach seemed very tasty, you’re right.” Severus agreed as he reached the boy.

Harry gulped as Snape stood in front of him with an indescribable expression on his face.

“In there. Now.” He ordered pointing at a door next to them.

Harry turned around and tried to open it but the door wouldn’t let them in.

“It’s locked. Do I have to figure out the password again?” Harry asked daring.

When Snape grabbed his wand, for the first time this morning Harry felt like he had gone too far. Maybe he misunderstood Snape’s acts last night and what he was doing now, this open teasing, daring Snape to react somehow, was a big mistake. A very big mistake.

Snape flicked his wand and Harry heard a click behind him. He tried again and the door opened up, but his fears remained as he stepped in the dark, deserted and dusty classroom.

The next second, he felt himself shoved into the nearest wall. Again.

“What do you want, Potter?” Severus stared into the gleaming green eyes.

Harry was surprised by the question.

“What do you mean?”

“Don’t play around Potter, what do you want from me?”

Oh. That was a good question, Harry thought but he couldn’t answer it right now.

Severus on the other hand was used to the fact that if he asked a question there was always an answer.

“If you didn't notice, that was a question, Potter. And questions need to be answered. So give me a damn answer.” Severus said with a fuming tone.

“Or what, you take points?” Harry said with all his bravery pulled together. He didn’t know what was happening right in front of him. Was Snape really mad, or was he just pretending? If he was mad now, then what the fuck was he doing last night?

Snape slammed a hand next to his ear and Harry was frightened for a second. Not the brutal force in Snape, not even the revelation that there was no way out from the room terrified him but that simple thought that he just went too far. He openly flirted with a teacher, moreover that teacher was Severus Snape the man who hated him (however not in the last two days at midnight), and the man the whole school was scared of.

“Answer me!” Snape demanded with voice low; threatening. Harry shivered from that tone again as so many times before and he made a decision.

“Well, not too much.” He looked into the dark eyes and shrugged. “Just you.” He went on with the same dark tone Snape was using.

“You don’t know what you want.” Snape said slowly with a sneer on his face.

“Oh, hell yes I do. I know exactly what I want. And that is… you.”

“Is it so, Potter? You want me? You want this?” Snape pointed at himself. “You want this?” He asked again and with a swift motion, he pulled up the arm of his cloak. His voice was darker than the darkest night as he showed Voldemort’s mark to Harry. Harry turned his eyes towards the mark and then back at Snape’s face. He grabbed the wrist, which was extended towards him and fell to his knees.

Severus’ eyes opened wide as he looked at the boy kneeling in front of him with his mouth floating over the mark of the Dark Lord.

As their gaze connected, Harry quietly whispered, “Yes, I do.” Then he lowered his mouth, giving a gentle kiss over the Dark Mark.

Severus had to moan with pleasure as he found the kiss burning his skin but not as painfully as Voldemort’s touch; on the contrary, it felt amazing as the soft lips were pressed to him, hot air tickled his skin and he felt himself getting harder immediately. The connection made the blood in his veins burst into flame. His whole body was on fire with lust he wasn’t able to control.

Harry’s hand slithered on Snape’s leg, firmly pressing into it; fingernails were dashing into the black cloth as he let the smooth feeling of relief flood his system. His enthusiasm drove his hand further up, over the inner side of Snape’s thigh then even further up, over his hard erection.

Both of them moaned as Severus pushed his cock to Harry’s palm and Harry slid his hand tightly over and over it. Suddenly Severus seized Harry’s hair and jerked him up, crashing him to the wall yet again.

“Be warned, I am not a gentle person.” He whispered roughly into Harry’s ear.

“That I already noticed.” Harry replied, his hands on Severus’ waist, pulling him closer. “If I wanted gentle, I’d go to a girl.” Harry moaned, because that was the only thing he could do with Severus’ teeth grazing over the skin of his neck.

Severus sank his teeth wildly onto Harry’s skin before he groaned, “And not the sharing type, either…”

Harry gasped as he felt fingers rushing over his aching groin. He moaned “Finally…” but there was no voice coming out from his throat. Although, someone else in the room spoke.

“Professor Snape, is that you?”

A moment later Snape was standing two steps in front of him, panting, his eyes locked with Harry’s as he said “What do you want Sir Nicholas?”

“Ah, Harry you are here as well!” The ghost smiled when he noticed Harry who was at that moment very grateful for the darkness in the room and pretty mad at Nick. “The headmaster is looking for you Professor, he asked me to tell you if we meet, that he is waiting for you in his office.”

Severus looked at Harry before he closed his eyes and groaned painfully. “Of course he is.”

“Mister Potter.” He opened the door and gestured to Harry to go out.

Harry stepped out into the brightly lighted corridor and said nothing as Nick was still floating over them. Snape slammed the door behind him, nodded towards him then turned around and walked away with a quick pace.

Harry was left there stunned. He knew life wasn’t exactly fair but this was way beyond not fair. This was excruciatingly vicious.

 

o.O.o

 

It was almost midnight and Harry was still lying on his bed without the tiniest hope of getting some sleep. He roamed the corridors endlessly during the entire day, trying to find Snape but it was in vain. The man had disappeared from the castle.

Even Ron and Hermione noticed there was something wrong with him, they tried to talk to him about it, but Harry couldn’t say a word. What exactly could he say to his friends? They either wouldn’t believe him or simply think he was mad. And he wouldn’t be surprised if they thought that, because he felt mad even at that moment, as he thought of how Snape’s hands on him affected him.

He turned around, thinking desperately to find a way, any way, which would lead him to what he needed so much. Then it hit him. The idea came with a bang and he damned himself for being such a stupid idiot and not thinking about this before.

The Marauders.

He took the map from his nightstand and opened it.

“I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.” He murmured and a minute later, he found what he was searching for. The little black point named Severus Snape was walking in his room, up and down, up and down then stopped for a second. A moment later the black point started it again, but Harry wasn’t watching it, he searched for Umbridge who was motionless in her room and that was all Harry needed. He tossed the map away and ran out from the room, down the stairs and out of the tower just as he was, barefoot, wearing just a shirt and boxers. He was running silently in the corridors, this time knowing exactly where he was heading. The air was cold around him and his feet froze every time it touched down on the stone ground.

He stopped dead before the door of his professor’s room. He reached his hand towards it, but didn’t dare to knock. There was no return from here. This time they would be alone, no one would disturb them in Snape’s room at one in the morning. Harry hesitated. Was this really what he wanted? Did he really want to go into that room and be with Snape?

Hell yes he did, Harry smiled.

He knocked on the door with heart beating furiously.

Then he knocked again.

And again.

But no matter how many times he tried there was no answer.

Disappointment, anger, and rage rushed through his veins as he slammed both his fists into the door before turning around. He felt a knot in his stomach and he knew that it wouldn’t disappear for a very long time. He felt somewhat sick as the bitter feeling of frustration took the place of want, need, and lust in his heart. Blindly following his instincts, he walked where his legs took him, hopefully towards the tower.

“Well, well, well, what little lamb is lost here in the dark?” A cold voice made him stop dead. His heart hammered in his chest as he looked up. “I told you once, if I run into you in the corridors one more time, I will give you something much more painful than that wound on your hand. Didn’t I tell you this, Potter?” The shadow spoke again and Harry’s legs trembled.

“You did, Sir.” He said breathing fast, walking towards the dark figure.

“Then why are you here, I wonder, knowing exactly the consequences of your actions.”

“Maybe I want those consequences to happen. Maybe I want them more than anything.” Harry said, now standing in front of Severus.

“Well then…” Snape whispered, stepping closer to Harry, “…who am I to deny something from the great Harry Potter? Even if the subject of his desire is… myself?” Like an eager caress under the skin, the last word set free their chained devotions.

Severus’ hand shot to Harry’s neck as he kissed him deeply without any restrain and he already felt impatient hands roaming on his body as Harry pushed his tongue into his mouth, kissing him back with the same raw force. They stumbled backwards until Harry’s back hit a wall then suddenly Severus grabbed the boy’s legs and pulled them around his waist, pressing his groin firmly into Harry who was instantly moaning at the sensation.

Severus felt the legs close around his hips and Harry even tried to pull him closer, however it was impossible. His hand went under Harry’s shirt, caressing wildly the boy’s soft skin who was groaning into his mouth endlessly.

Grinding his hips to Harry, he skimmed his lips over the young man’s neck, nipping his flesh with his teeth. Harry’s fingers went into his hair, pulling him closer while moaning. At first, Severus didn’t understand he wanted to say something until he heard a quiet “No…” coming from the boy.

“You change your mind quite quickly, Potter…” He said, leaning a bit back, feeling somehow disappointed. He still couldn’t believe what he had just done, no matter how amazing it felt. However Potter’s leg around his waist was a pretty obvious evidence of what had just happened.

“I mean…” Harry started, panting heavily. “Don’t do that.” His eyes closed as his head fell back.

“What?” Severus smirked, his hips bucking forwards, his erection crushing Harry’s.

That!” Harry cried ardently.

“You of all people should know the best that I do whatever I want.” His groin was sliding against Harry as if he were already thrusting into him, however very slowly. He knew how much that tortured the boy. And that was exactly why he was doing it.

“Then do it. But in bed. Naked.” Harry groaned, his hands around Severus’ neck, his whole body arching away from the wall towards his professor, his hips moving in synchrony with Snape’s grinding waist.

“Look at you Potter. So keen to get something you don’t even need.”

“I do need you. I need you… with me… in me…”

Severus groaned at the fervent tone in Harry’s words.

“Oh Harry…”Severus sighed into the skin of boy’s neck. This shouldn’t have happened. He shouldn’t be with Harry. Not now, not ever. “I am not the gentle lover you wish for.” He whispered, because despite of what his common sense told him, he wanted this more than anything, and he couldn’t stop himself from getting what he wanted.

“I don’t wish for a gentle lover, I wish for you alone.” Came a harsh reply.

“I might hurt you.” Severus tried to scare away the boy. He couldn’t stop himself but maybe he could stop Harry.

But Harry wasn’t so easily scared. He grabbed Snape’s hair and pulled his head up so that he could look into the dark eyes. For a moment he just stared into the endless black then he kissed Severus lightly.

“I trust you.” He muttered into Severus’ mouth as his hands went around the other man, seizing him, pulling him closer.

Harry

 For a few seconds, Severus enjoyed the tender kiss then he pulled away just to look at the pair of mesmerizing green eyes then he whispered with a hint of sadness in his voice, “You don’t even know me.”

“That is true.” Harry nodded slowly. “I don’t know everything about you.” His hand went over Severus’ face, his thumb caressing his professor’s lips. “And yet, I trust you.”

Severus’ eyes opened widely as he heard the words. “Your trust amazes me.” He said honestly, giving a kiss to Harry’s thumb.

“Well…” Harry smiled. “That’s me. Harry Potter, the most awesome, kind and amaz-”

“Shut up, Potter.” Severus sneered, shoving Harry against the wall again, grinding their hips together with ardent force. Harry wasn’t able to say one more word, only harsh groans came out of his mouth as fierce lips invaded him.

Their patience was at its end as Severus slid his hands over Harry’s ass.

“Are you planning on fucking me against this very wall?” Harry moaned as he felt Severus pulling down his boxers.

“Indeed, I do.” Severus answered darkly with a wicked grin on his lips, which were now caressing Harry’s neck.

“Your ro- Ah god!” Harry couldn’t finish as long fingers went around his erection, skimming him with a hard grip. He tried to say it again but when he opened his mouth, only rough groans came out. However, Severus seemed to know what he was just about to say.

“My room? You need a bed for sex, Potter?” Teasing, he slid his right thumb firmly over the tip of Harry’s cock, which was already wet with precome.

“Stop talking and let’s return to the part when you fuck me against this wall please.” Harry murmured, patiently thrusting into Severus’ hand.

Severus had to admit, the boy was like living lust. His head was tossed back as he moaned continuously, every time Severus moved his hand on his cock, kissed his lips, or sank his teeth into his skin. Harry didn’t need much, after a few minutes he heard the boy panting and gasping faster and faster, moaning…

“Severus…” His name. His name and nothing else could come out of Harry’s mouth. That made him smirk.

“That’s right Harry. Me. Only I can do this to you. Make you this uncontrolled, enthusiastic and passionate.” He whispered with his cold, mysterious voice and Harry moaned louder than ever.

“Speak to me.” Harry demanded, squealing from pleasure.

Severus laughed darkly. “You like my voice? You get aroused by my voice?”

“I could come just by listening to you…” Harry muttered tossing his head from side to side.

“Well then…” Severus sneered. “Let’s see if that’s true.” And with that he let go of Harry’s erection and grabbed the boy’s hands so he couldn’t resist or go anywhere.

“No…” Harry begged, when he felt the loss of warmness around his cock and the iron grip on his hand.

“You want me to go on, Potter?” Severus said, with voice so low Harry almost couldn’t hear him.

“Y…Yes…” Came a shaking response from the eager boy.

“You want me to jerk you out, here in the middle of the corridor?” Snape’s voice was dark and ice cold but felt as good as an icy shower in summer. Harry became even more eager with every word; he didn’t know how the calm, controlled voice could affect him like this.

“You want me to fold my fingers around your erection again and make you come screaming? Just one word and I will do it.” Harry was moaning but he didn’t say anything. No matter how impatient and keen he was, he wanted to hear Severus.

“No? You want something else?” Severus whispered. “What would that be, young Potter, hero of all the wizards and witches, saviour of the world? What does the Boy Who Lived want from a simple man like me? May it be my body? Or my soul?” A harsh groan sounded deep inside Harry’s throat.

“My soul?” Severus said with a satisfied smirk on his face. “I thought it would be my body that you crave so much.” He said in a low voice, his lips moving millimetres over Harry’s ear, his hot breath making the boy shiver everywhere. “I thought you wanted me inside you. My erection driving into you, moving wildly and fast, shoving you against the wall with every thrust until you desire the end so badly that you beg for me to make you come, to thrust faster, to drive into you deeper, harder…”

“Enough!” Harry shouted, as his teeth encaged Severus mouth and he kissed him desperately. If he thought he could hold on with the man whispering all these lustful things into his ear with his voice so low and harsh, his tone so dangerous, he was seriously mistaken.

That was all Severus needed. His hand returned around Harry’s erection and he started stroking him with wild, eager movements. Harry was thrusting into his hand, his hips bucking up every time Severus pushed his fingers down on Harry’s length.

“Ahh yeah… Ah Severus… yeah…” were the last comprehensive things on Harry’s lips before Severus sped up, his thumb sliding on the wet tip of Harry’s erection and then Harry simply lost it, his vision became blinding white and the endless rush of satisfaction flooded his whole system.

When he came to his senses again, he felt wet lips on his neck, warm air on his skin and gentle hands holding him while he was still pressed against the wall, his legs around Severus and with his whole body shivering endlessly.

“Sir,” He said in an official voice. “Did you just make your student come in the middle of a deserted hallway?”

He felt a smile on his neck.

“Yes I did. And I will do it again.” Whispered the dark voice.

“Good.” Harry nodded still in that official tone. “Because I…”

“Silence.” Severus ordered, leaning away from Harry.

After a couple of seconds, Harry realized what Severus had heard. The distant sound of footsteps reached him as well. Their gaze met and Harry looked down at himself. He had to get himself clean before…

Severus waved with his wand and Harry felt his wet, messed up clothes dry quickly. He was standing on his feet and was surprised to feel the pain in his legs.

Severus smirked as he whispered inaudibly, “You were quite enthusiastic and loud when you came several minutes ago. Minerva must have heard you, so if you don’t want to explain why you are here in the middle of the night, just after coming into the hand of your professor, crying his name passionately, you might want to go into my room before she gets here. However I would like to see her face when she realizes I was just about to fuck you.”

Harry’s heart missed a beat in excitement and his stomach clenched at the words.

“Don’t forget about me.” Harry said as he turned around to walk into Snape’s room. Suddenly Severus grabbed his wrist and pulled him back, giving him a wild, mind-blowing kiss.

“I won't.” He whispered hearing the footsteps from right behind the corner.

Harry smirked as he slipped through the door, which opened up when Snape waved his hand once again.

“Minerva! What brings you here in the middle of the night?” He could hear Severus say right after the door closed behind him.

“Severus, why are you still up, you’re not on patrol today!”

“I couldn’t sleep, I thought I come out for a bit…” Severus answered nonchalantly and Harry smiled.

“Don’t lie Severus…” He murmured to himself as he went deeper in the room. During the previous nights, he was only allowed to see the living room, but there were two doors in front of him. One was leading to the bathroom so the other must be the…

Bedroom.

He stepped in the dimly lit room. There were candles hanging on the wall and the moonlight also helped him to see where he was. This room was also full of books, but in the middle of the room, there was a huge bed, with dark green sheets.

Harry walked towards the bed, his fingers lightly sliding over the wooden frame. He noticed that the Hogwarts emblem was carved into the dark wood and over that, there were a carved, wooden lion and a snake, entwined with each other, right at the middle of the head of the bed. The badger and the raven were at the left and right side of the frame turning their heads towards the entangled lion and snake.

“You like what you see?” Came a voice from behind.

Harry turned around and grinned. He pulled his shirt over his head and threw it down the floor.

“I do.” He said simply. “And what about you, Sir? Like what you see?”

“Definitely.” Snape smirked as he stepped towards him.

Harry reached out and grabbed Severus by his black cloak. Pulling him swiftly closer, he kissed him eagerly. He felt the lust return to his body as his hands roamed on the dark man before him.

“What comes now?” He asked harshly, teasing, his hand skimming over Severus’ hard erection, listening to his fast panting.

“Now Potter, I will bring what I promised to an end,” Severus whispered evilly to Harry’s ear, pushing him slowly towards the bed. “… and give you something more painful, however very satisfying and pleasing, than your wound.” The danger in his voice made Harry’s heart rumble in his chest and with the last word he felt himself be pushed down onto the bed. Severus still stood towering over him.

“This is your last chance to escape.” Snape groaned, but then he saw Harry smirk and open his legs widely. With that, he lowered himself over Harry. “You’re so gonna beg for me…”

 

o.O.o

 

Many hours later, panting, Severus lay next to Harry, who was still breathing very fast. The boy, indeed, had been begging many times during the last couple of hours and Severus was more than willing to grant everything Harry craved for.

Harry drove two hands over his messed up hair as he moaned again while his body tensed and arched away from the sheets, remembering again everything they just did. He was exhausted in a very good way; he still felt like he was floating over the bed. Severus wasn’t too hard or painful with him, but had perfectly manoeuvred at the edge between pleasure and pain, knowing exactly what Harry needed.

“This was…madness.” Harry groaned as he turned to his stomach and looked out the window before giving a small kiss over Severus’ chest. Severus smiled at the comment.

“I should go back to the tower.” He said then, however he didn’t have the slightest intention of going anywhere too far from this man. He had neither the intention, nor the strength to go anywhere, actually.

“Stay.” Came a quiet reply from above his head. He felt Severus’ chest faintly vibrate as he spoke.

“What? You want me to stay? Here? For the night? Well, for what remains of the night?” He said, as the sun was already coming up.

“If you keep up the questions I might change my mind.” Severus sneered at him, closing his eyes.

“I’m shutting up.” Harry said quickly.

“Good.” Severus pulled up the blanket and covered Harry. He, himself didn’t really need it as he was mostly covered by Harry. Harry inched closer to him, his head rested on his neck. Severus folded his arms around the boy as he whispered, “’Night, Harry.” and closed his eyes.

“’Night…” Harry said and he fell asleep with a smile on his lips.

Chapter Text

Severus took a deep breath. Something heavy was pressed against his chest… What could that be? As he drifted further from the impossible land of dreams and came closer to the cold reality, he realized what he thought was a dream wasn’t one, moreover reality wasn’t even that cold anymore.

His eyes opened up lazily. To make sure that what had happened last night wasn’t just a lustful, thus cruel fantasy of his imagination, he looked down at his chest. The absolute evidence of the unexpected events was gusting silently over his chest, hot breeze coming from his mouth, ghosting over Severus’ skin, making him shiver.

His fingers drifted through his hair as images of last night appeared in his mind, leaving him breathless yet again. He slipped out from the bed, carefully so as not to wake the boy. He walked to the window and looked out to the park, which was bathing in the bright morning sunshine.

He leaned desperately against the window frame.

What had he done?

He’d slept with a student, even worse, that student was Harry Potter. He snuck a quick look at the boy behind him. Why did this happen? Why on earth would he have sex with someone like Potter?  Did this all occur because of Lily? Because of his deep love for the young woman? There was never a romantic relationship between them, and he never even wished for it but maybe… maybe…

He thought of the green eyes, shimmering in pleasure as Harry was moving under him uncontrolled last night and he shook his head. Definitely not because of Lily. The only thing he saw when he looked at those eyes wasn’t his long lost friend, but Harry.

Then because of James, maybe? Was this his revenge for the long torture that man caused him during his whole youth? He turned around and studied the boy. He did look like James but…

But he wasn’t like him. Harry wasn’t that arrogant, spoiled bastard Severus wished him to be. Wished?

He knew he was close to the solution so he went on with this thought.

Did he really wish for Harry to be a bastard, an egoistic brat? If he wanted to be honest with himself, and this was the perfect time for it, he had to admit, that yes he did wish for it. Because, then, he could easily carry on his hatred from father to son.

But the truth was, and this caused a bit of a shock to his system as he watched the boy, lying on his dark green sheets, he realized, he didn’t have a good reason to hate this young man.

Harry wasn’t egoistic, his own safety was never more important to him than other’s, moreover, not just once he almost died, protecting his friends. He wasn’t arrogant, Severus never saw or heard him boasting about his amazing talent in Quidditch (which he evidently had), or showing off his lightening shaped scar.

Then why did he still loathe the boy for nearly the past five years? Now, as he looked at Harry, he knew it wouldn’t take long and he would grow closer to this young man. It was inevitable not to like him and thinking about last night he knew it was also inevitable not to want him. Did he force himself to feel hate because he wanted to prevent himself from feeling affection towards the boy? And what happened three days ago, that caused this old, hateful emotion to change and he helped him despite of his hatred instead of simply giving him detention.

Detention. Umbridge. That bitch.

He turned back towards the park.

“I have never doubted the fact that you are one of the most exceptional wizards living today.” Harry had said to him three nights before, and Severus felt again that warmness spread in his chest. Why do you respect me, Harry? Why don’t you hate me when I was so cruel to you every time you entered my classroom or we simply ran into each other in the corridors?

Was it the respect Harry admitted back there, that he never earned during classes, which changed his feelings?

Severus sighed deeply. The Potions classes… He was Harry’s teacher for Merlin’s sake! How could he do this? How could he be so reckless and selfish that he didn’t think about the consequences? A student-teacher relationship in Hogwarts… right under Dumbledore’s watching eyes?! He had to be mad, not thinking about this earlier. He rubbed his forehead and drove his long fingers through his still messed up hair.

Well, if he was indeed mad, he had a very good reason to be. Namely Harry Potter.

His eyes followed a hippogriff as it was hunting a bird over the Forest. It was flying right behind the bird, following its every turn and manoeuvring perfectly.

He couldn’t go on with this… this relationship with Harry, and he knew it perfectly. But it hurt him. It was a pain in the ass to think about letting the boy leave this room, right into Miss Granger’s, Miss Chang’s or even the Weasley girl’s welcoming hands. But Severus knew he had to let go of Harry because this could not go on. It was forbidden to say at least.

But it felt amazing.

But how would he tell this young man here, that he was not welcomed in this room anymore. Well, he was welcomed but he shouldn’t come back anymore…

Then a terrible thought clenched his heart. What if Harry didn’t even want to come back? Why did he think, after spending one night with the boy, that Harry felt the same way about this? That he wanted this as bad as Severus, not caring what the world might say. He was Harry Potter, after all. The Boy Who Lived, The Chosen One, there was no way this could go on without anyone knowing about it…

Severus looked at the boy again, just quickly, not letting his gaze stick there for an eternity. He wondered about what Harry would want, about what the boy’s reason was to sleep with him.

Well, certainly not love, he thought and he had to smile about that. Curiosity? Trying how far he can go? Or simply having some fun? Or something else? Something deeper?

“Mmm…” Harry moan behind him and Severus heard the quiet swishing of the sheets. He turned around and leaned against the windowsill.

“’Mornin’” Harry said, stretching his whole body, his back arching away from the bed.

“I would not call this morning…” Severus said and he tried to hide his smile.

“I’m sore everywhere!” Harry groaned then, his arm resting over his eyes, shutting out the bright sunshine.

“You see Potter, I do not doubt that, as your physical condition is worse than an eighty year old man’s.”

Harry froze in motion and his eyes shot open. He looked slowly at Severus, who was calmly staring at him with a smile at the corner of his mouth. Harry’s gaze shifted on his body and for a second lust glistened in his eyes but it was gone as he spoke up.

 “So what, I don’t hold your cock in my mouth for five minutes and I’m back to being Potter?”

Severus didn’t have time to react, however he didn’t exactly know what to say to that.

“And what do you mean by that anyway?” Harry snapped. “I didn’t hear you complaining last night…and this morning.” He added with a broad grin.

“I see you became even more defiant after visiting the lion’s den once…” Severus raised any eyebrow.

“Lion?” Harry said, his finger sliding on the enfolded lion and snake carvings on the bed frame. “Rather snake, isn’t it? A very poisonous one…” He looked Severus in the eyes.

“Am I poisoning you?” Severus asked calmly, however he felt rather anxious.

“My mind… my body…” Harry nodded seriously and Severus turned around again. This could not mean anything good, Harry thinking about him as poison…

He heard movements behind him, but he didn’t turn around. His gaze was riveted on the forest, staring blindly at the green trees.

Hands were folded around his chest and Harry kissed his neck. “I don’t mind it though…” Severus heard him whisper. “I like the feeling.”

He closed his eyes in pleasure and slid his hands on Harry’s.

This. This was exactly what he had craved for so long and what he didn’t want to let go of willingly.

“I don’t want this to end.” Severus heard himself saying the words; however, he only meant them as a thought.

“What makes you think it will end?” Severus felt Harry speaking into his skin. His warm breath caressed him as gently as his words caressed his heart.

“It has to…” Severus murmured and his hands tightened on Harry’s unconsciously. He felt the boy freeze behind him, not even taking air for a second then the warm hands disappeared from his chest.

“Look at me.” Harry told him quietly.

Severus turned around and looked into the boy’s eyes. The determination he felt moments ago to make a decision, which was already too painful, decreased to half as his sight met with the green eyes sparkling in the midday sunshine.

“Let me tell you one thing Severus.” Harry said and with his determination nothing was wrong. “I know what you want to say, I know exactly what kind of crazy bullshit is in your head right now.”

“Oh so you are a master of Legilimens as well now, are you Harry?” Severus sneered coldly.

“Don’t give me this ‘I’m a cold-hearted Professor’ act, Severus because I know you want this, us, as badly as I do.” Harry said poking Severus’ bare chest with his pointing finger. This fight, he wouldn’t lose. Never.

“Harry, listen. I’m…” Severus didn’t have a chance to finish. To his surprise, he was interrupted. This had never happened in his life as far as he could remember. Maybe Dumbledore had stopped him in mid-sentence once or twice but never a student.

“Can I finish that for you? You are my teacher and you are older than me. You could be my father, well you are as old as my father would be and by the way, you loathed him. You are Severus Snape and I’m Harry Potter, and the two of us together would cause a scandal if the headmaster or the teachers or even the public should know about it. Not to mention what Voldemort would do. But let me make this clear for you. I don’t give a shit about them. There are only two people in the whole world who can decide if we have a relationship or not and they are you and me. So don’t give me this shit about how you can't be with me for some stupid reason or another. As long as we keep this a secret, you can be with me, just stop being a coward and admit it.” Harry jabbered away with one long breath.

Severus was astonished and speechless. He had only wanted to say ‘Harry, listen. I’m starving, why don’t we speak about this while eating something…?’ or something like that. It took him several seconds to realize what the young man had thrown at him. And when he finally understood it, he felt warmer inside. Well, now he knew how the boy felt about him. But no one called Severus Snape a coward and walked away still breathing.

“Say that again and you won't survive the day.” Severus reacted, his eyes heated with lust, his voice ice-cold and husky.

“Why, or you’ll curse me?” Harry replied bravely however he didn’t know if the warning was real or not. He knew Severus enough to know that calling him a coward was indeed a huge offense.

“Oh no Harry. I’ll simply…” Severus took a threatening step towards Harry and the boy felt a shiver go through his body. “…fuck you senseless until you don’t even know your own name and your mind becomes more useless than it is now.” The Potions Master grabbed his chin and raised his head a bit, as he pulled him a bit closer.

“Do you punish everyone like this?” Harry smirked slightly, relieved that Severus wasn’t actually mad at him.

“No, just you. You deserve it, brat.” Severus whispered, the corner of his mouth curving up into a small smile before he kissed Harry gently.

Harry was surprised by the gentle touch. After Severus’ words he was expecting something wild, like last night. But it looked like his professor had the opposite thing in mind as he guided Harry slowly backwards, until the Gryffindor felt his leg bump against the bed.

Severus’ mouth still lingered over Harry’s as he laid the young man lightly on the bed. Harry immediately tugged up his legs and he pushed his head back as he felt Severus’ body lazily sliding over him, their groins pressed together. Harry moaned quietly as Severus nipped the skin over his Adam’s apple, then a bit above and then over his jaw. Every time Severus sank his teeth onto his skin, it caused arousing vibes to rush through his body, reaching every inch of him.

Severus felt a hand sliding on his back, then on his ass, pressing him down while Harry pushed himself up, his erected cock slithering against his, causing the boy to moan lustily. He reached the boy’s neck and let his teeth scratch their way up on the soft skin until he reached Harry’s ear. His tongue slid out and skimmed the edge of Harry’s ear, and then he went over that path with lips, kissing the sensitive area.

Harry was unable to think as he felt hot lips trailing on his ear, teeth nipping on it so gently yet feverish he could lose his mind in the sensation. A hand was ghosting over his nipple, another slithering gently in his hair. He was gasping quickly as if he were close to climaxing already.

“I’m hungry.” He heard Severus’ harsh moan; his intense, rough voice echoing in his mind made his cock jerk painfully.

“Oh God!” Harry cried. “Do me! Fuck Severus, do me please!” He begged loudly, demanding ardently for what he craved.

Severus chuckled. Chuckled. That voice made Harry cry out in pleasure. His fingernails slashed into Severus’ lower back as his back arched again, his groin pushed up, meeting Severus’ as the man was grinding him to the sheets.

“I am amazed at your lack of control, Harry…” Severus groaned into his ear so silently Harry barely heard it. He was sure he only received the resonance of the words as his heart hammered in his head vociferously, making him deaf to the outside.

“You do this… to me…” Harry gasped between moans, feeling fingers at the edge of his boxers.

“That…” Severus grunted, pulling Harry’s boxers down and throwing them away, “…is indeed right.” He murmured, knowing exactly what his voice did to the boy. He lubricated his finger with a spell, and with the last word, he pushed it into Harry. Slowly.

Harry cried out. He was already too close to coming. This man was madness. No matter what he did, Harry felt at the edge within seconds. And now his finger was moving with such speed out of him just to be pushed back inside, gently and gradually.

Leisurely Severus moved out his finger just to add one more then he went on with torturing the boy. He took his time as his wet fingers were moving inside Harry, his mouth sliding on the boy’s shoulders, lips kissing into the soft, tanned skin, until he reached Harry’s nipple.

His left hand slithered under Harry’s arm, and then he grabbed the boy’s shoulder to steady him. Leaning over the young man’s chest under him, he looked up and waited until the green eyes opened up in impatience.

Harry suffered because Severus wasn’t moving over him. He looked down to see what was going on and his gaze met with the endless back eyes staring intensively at him. When their gazes connected, Severus lowered his mouth and took one of Harry’s nipples lazily into his mouth. Slowly, he ran his wet tongue over it once, then twice and Harry almost came from that. The fingers also started moving again, in and out and he moaned wildly, throwing his head back on the creased, dark green sheets.

Severus groaned as a hand slithered into his hair, sliding through it several times, messing with it, and gripping it sometimes gently, sometimes so forcefully it almost hurt. But Severus didn’t mind it. His right hand continued its unhurried thrusting into the young man‘s hole as he steadied the boy with his left. He felt fingers at his left hand, trying to enfold with his and he let their fingers enclose at Harry’s shoulder.

Little by little Severus crept up until he reached Harry’s ear next to their connected hands. “You are about to pay for calling me a coward, Mister Potter.” He whispered and Harry moaned enthusiastically. With a swift motion, Severus pulled out his hard cock, cast a silent lubricating spell and positioned it at Harry’s entrance. “I am going to fuck you, Mister Potter.” Severus went on, his right hand meanwhile pulling Harry’s leg over his shoulder. “And I am going to be slow. So deliberate in fact that you will beg for me to fuck you harder and faster, to thrust you into this mattress so wildly you lose your mind. And as a matter of fact, you will lose your mind. Because I, obviously, won't fulfil your wishes. Do you understand me, Mister Potter?”

Harry couldn’t concentrate, feeling Severus’ erection poking his entrance, his rough, threatening voice filling his mind and heart, making him shiver and jerk from almost every word, it was too much. No, he was unable to concentrate so he did the only thing he was able to do. He moaned. Fervently and ardently, he moaned “Yes, ah yes Severus, please!”

And Severus, this one time, granted what he wanted. He pushed in as slowly as he could. Hell, it was even a torture for himself but he would carry out his plan no matter what. He thrust in again and Harry groaned, panting already louder.

Severus kissed Harry, his lips nipping on the soft mouth as Harry moaned again. His tongue came out, lightly wetting the boy’s dry lips. Harry captured his lips suddenly, his enthusiastic kiss made the older man gasp as their teeth clashed together and for a second Severus lost sight of his plan. Harry took the opportunity and tried to turn them over somehow.

“You sneaky Gryffindor.” Severus laughed, pulling both Harry’s hand over his head and pinning the boy to the bed. Harry tensed against his restrain but he already knew it was worthless.

“At least I’m not a Slytherin.” Harry moaned, this time biting into Severus’ neck, leaving red marks behind.

“Have anything against Slytherin?” Severus asked, slowing his movement even more. Harry didn’t know how it was even possible. This man was going to kill him, he was sure of that.

No, Merlin no, just please move faster!”

“Better…” Severus sneered. He didn’t speed up though. He held Harry still with only his left hand as his right slithered down on the boy’s sweating body until he reached his aching erection. His fingers slid around the hard cock and started their lingering caress.

“I can't believe it!” Harry exclaimed. “Severus faster, please!” Harry begged moaning as he felt the overwhelming sensation all around his body.

No.” Severus smirked at him, still thrusting into Harry deliberately, leisurely as if he had all the time in the universe to make this man under him come feverishly. However he didn’t feel like he would be able to hold on for much longer. This was maddening for him as well, way worse than he imagined. He couldn’t really hold himself back with Harry moaning so desperately under him, gasping for air loudly after each and every slow, prolonged thrust, his back now constantly arching away from the bed as the rush of pleasure went through his body endlessly, leaving him eager to get more.

“You drive me mad!” Harry particularly screamed as Severus found his prostate, but as he was still driving into him gradually, the sensations were more infuriating than pleasuring. He cried out every time Severus’ cock slid against that one extremely sensitive spot and after a while, he was rewarded with faster thrusts.

Severus let his erection plunge into Harry, pinning the boy to the mattress but then he still slid out maddeningly slowly. Harry cried loudly under him and so did Severus, but he didn’t speed up, not yet.

“You deserve it Harry.” He whispered into the boy’s ear, before he went back to his lips. “You turned my world upside down.” He moaned into the boy’s mouth before he kissed him passionately.

Harry was eager. He’d never thought he could feel this devastated and desperate about something. He was writhing on the bed, as Severus was still holding him down; his fingers dashing into the other’s so badly he almost smashed the older man’s bones.

Harry folded his leg over the middle of Severus’ back and now only his shoulder touched the sheets. “Ah god! Alright, I’m sorry! Ah fuck, you’re not a coward… Ah geez please just fuck me harder already!” He yelled, not being able to bear the lustful torture anymore.

“Finally!” was all Severus managed to moan before he shoved into Harry with almost animalistic force. Harry pushed up his hips even more, giving Severus a better angle for penetration. They were moving in complete synchrony as Severus was driving into Harry with maddening speed. He went hard and he went deep inside him and that was all Harry needed.

They moved, fervently like last night, desperately as if it were their last time to be with the other, to hold him, to thrust into him and they let their teeth clash painfully together and Harry didn’t mind the raw biting at his collar bone, neither did Severus care about the red sucking mark in his neck or the pain in his hand.

They just thrust and pushed, their sweating bodies smashing against each other until Severus felt the blinding whiteness take over his mind and system. Lastly, he felt Harry’s body jerk under him and he heard the boy’s keen moan but then his own orgasm struck him down, leaving him boneless and mindless until at least an eternity passed.

Severus blinked once, then twice. He was lying over Harry. The boy was still panting fast and loud, or maybe he was hearing his own ragged breathing, he wasn’t sure.

“Madness I say. Madness.” Harry said, kissing into his neck. “That’s all I can say after having sex with you. Severus Snape, you are a god. A sex god, I might add.”

Severus laughed into the wet sheet then leaned on his elbows. “I was just trying to keep up with you, Harry. You are lust itself, trapped in a body. In a very nice body, by the way.” And with that he slowly slid out from Harry. He listened to the boy’s fervent moans with satisfaction.

“I can’t move.” Harry murmured and Severus smirked as he dropped himself next to his panting student.

“I confess I find these kinds of activities more pleasant, interesting, and satisfying than making you scrub cauldrons. However I admit I found some twisted pleasure in those moments as well.” Severus said, his long fingers playing with Harry’s black mane.

“I knew you enjoyed watching me suffer.” Harry snorted.

Harry felt Severus freeze and the air became colder by several degrees.

“I never enjoyed watching you suffer Harry. It broke my heart to listen to you when you told us what had happened in the graveyard a few months ago.” Severus told him, staring at the ceiling.

“I didn’t mean it that way.” Harry mumbled, his hand on Severus’ chest, sliding calming on the scarred, white skin.

“I know, I just wanted to tell you this…” Severus shook himself as he went on with a smile on his face. “Besides, I, myself, enjoy torturing you. In a lot of ways.”

“That I believe.” Harry huffed. “Homework, deadly potions, detention… sex. A lot of ways, indeed.”

Severus laughed and Harry turned onto his stomach to see the man’s face. The smile that spread over Severus’ face made him even more handsome, it was playful and smug. Harry liked it. And he wanted to see it more often.

“How is your hand?” Severus asked as his sight shifted to his green scarf, still folded around Harry’s palm.

“It’s doesn’t hurt at all.” Harry shook his head as he placed his hand over the older man’s stomach.

“Let me see.” Severus ordered and sat up. His fingers were already undoing the little knot.

“Wow, it’s healed!” Harry exclaimed in surprise. Not even a faint scar was on his hand.

“What did you expect?” Severus sneered.

“What was that anyways? What you used on me. I’ve never seen Madam Pomfrey heal like this…” Harry smiled with a meaningful look.

“That was a simple, but rare healing potion.”

“Don’t tell me other healers lick their patient’s hand like you did to me… that was like plain foreplay.” Harry pushed Severus back on the bed and laid over him.

“Well, certainly not. They use other serums which don’t require the healer to lick anything at all.” Severus smirked.

“Then why didn’t you use those potions on me?” Harry exclaimed, sitting up in Severus lap.

“Where’s the fun in that?” Severus laughed, his hands roaming on the younger man’s thighs. “It was a perfect possibility for me to study your reactions in a situation like that. I found you quite keen and-”

“Oh shut up, you git!” Harry leaned down and kissed Severus, his warm lips caging Severus’ swollen, red ones. They kissed lazily, enjoying the bright Saturday sunshine and each other. Forgetting about the outside world as the other’s warmth surrounded them. Until…

Harry heard a weird sound. He didn’t believe he heard it but then it made noise again. He broke the kiss and looked down at Severus’ stomach then back at the man’s dark, devoted eyes and he raised an eyebrow.

“I told you I was hungry.” Severus answered the unsaid question. The weird sound Harry heard was the older man’s rumbling stomach.

“I thought you’re hungry for me.” Harry raised his eyebrow even higher.

“Certainly I am.” Severus said casually. “However I do require some food as well.”

“I could eat something too…” Harry thought about it. “Why don’t we go down and eat some breakfast? Then we could return to the more… important things…” Harry suggested whispering, placing gentle kisses over Severus’ white skin.

“Breakfast?” The other man laughed. “I feel we slightly missed breakfast as it is almost noon.” He said, his fingers tangling in Harry’s hair.

Harry raised his head, his eyes shimmering, and there was a smirk on the corner of his mouth. “Even better.” He said then jumped off Severus and threw a blanket on the man. He pulled up his boxers and stood in the middle of the room.

“Dobby, could you please come here for sec?” Harry said to the thin air.

“Who are you-?” Severus couldn’t finish the sentence because a little green house elf appeared in his room with a loud pop.

“Harry Potter sir,” Dobby bowed before Harry then turned towards Severus, who sat on his bed in disbelief with wide open eyes. “Professor Severus Snape sir, good morning Sirs.” Dobby bowed deeply again. “Dobby is here as Harry Potter wanted. What do the sirs want Dobby to do?” The little elf said in a high voice smiling as if this was the most thrilling thing in his life.

 “Dobby listen, the Professor and I missed breakfast…” Harry said, scratching his bare stomach lightly. “Would you be nice and bring us something to eat? We don’t really want to go down to the Great Hall now…”

“Naturally Harry Potter sir. Dobby is always happy to help Harry Potter, sir.” Dobby nodded furiously, his huge ears flapping his head.

“It’s not a problem, right?” Harry asked with concern.

“No of course, it is never a problem for Dobby to help Harry Potter sir, Dobby feels honoured that Harry Potter asked Dobby, sir. And Dobby is also happy to help the Professor. Dobby knows that Professor Snape is not as evil as everybody thinks. The Professor once cured Dobby.” Dobby lowered his voice so that only Harry could hear him but of course, Severus heard every word he said. And he blinked slightly shocked on the seriously nodding elf.

Harry beamed at Severus. “I know he’s a great man.”

“Dobby will come back and bring Harry Potter and his nice Professor all kinds of delicious food, sir.” Dobby told them joyfully and disappeared.

Severus raised an eyebrow. “Was there really a loud house elf in my room just now, or am I simply going mad?”

“There was.” Harry laughed, staying in the middle of the room.

“I might have forgotten to mention to you during this heated morning but our relationship must remain hidden before the eyes of everyone. As you might remember you are Harry Potter and I am a spy for both the Light and Dark side, thus Voldemort would be very happy to see this new twist in the events. And that was Malfoy’s old house elf.”

Harry was surprised to notice that there was a hint a fear in Severus’ voice, moreover his tone trembled slightly as he said the name of the Dark Lord. He crawled next to Severus on the bed and clapped the man’s face in his hands. He kissed Severus lightly on his lips then looked into the dark eyes.

“I liberated Dobby from the Malfoys and he is still grateful to me. He is one of my most loyal friends. You don’t have to be worried about Voldemort, not now, not when I’m here with you.” Harry whispered quietly.

“But I am, Harry, and I always will be.” Severus closed his eyes; his voice was so painful it almost broke Harry’s heart as he touched their foreheads together.

“Not always, Severus. I will make sure of that.”

“Silly boy.” Severus shook his head, his hands resting on Harry’s hips. He didn’t let Harry respond but kissed him instead. He kissed the Gryffindor deeply, letting him know how much he cared for him. The idea of Voldemort knowing about their newly formed alliance, about this connection, scared Severus so much, he already felt his heart bleeding; they were safe and sound in his room. He didn’t even dare let his mind wander over the torturing field of ‘what if’s.

When Harry broke the kiss, Severus smoothed away a black curl and looked into the flaming green eyes. Those weren’t the eyes of a fifteen year old boy. He knew that gaze pretty well- it was the same glance that looked back at him from the mirror every damn morning.

“Oh Harry…” He groaned, pulling the young man closer. Harry wrapped his hands around him in a tight, warm embrace. They hugged for a few minutes and Severus buried his head into Harry’s neck. He felt Harry’s heartbeat drum under his touch and also felt his own. He waited until his slowed down to the same calm rhythm as Harry’s was beating then pulled back.

“Let’s eat.” Harry suggested, with a small smile and Severus was grateful that he went on without a comment about his weak moment. Severus looked up and realized he missed it when Dobby returned with their breakfast.

“I’ll be eating this food for a month.” He mumbled as Harry stood up and brought several plates closer.

“I’ll help you with it.” Harry beamed happily as he sat next to him on the bed with a plate full of eggs and bacon in his hands. “Want some?” He asked, bringing one of the plates towards Severus.

They ate quietly for a while.

“Coffee?” Harry asked, standing up, reaching towards the jug full of the hot black liquid. He heard a hoarse, almost animalistic groan coming from deep in Severus’ throat. He felt his cock twitch and harden at the raw sound.

Yes.” Severus whimpered placing his empty plate on the nightstand.

Harry grabbed two mugs and poured coffee in both of them. He added milk and a bit of cinnamon to one of the coffees and handed the other mug to Severus.

“Black, right?” He smiled.

Severus didn’t even ask how Harry knew it. He looked at the young man appreciatively and took the hot mug, leaning back on his pillow.

Harry, meanwhile, sat back at the other end and watched Severus as he slowly took a sip from his mug. Then he heard again that wild and keen groan coming from Severus. His eyes opened wide and he couldn’t repress the sound of his own pleasure as he saw the older man close his eyes in satisfaction, the mug enfolded between his two palms, his lips slightly parted, his tongue sliding slowly on his lower lip, tasting the remains of the first gulp of the coffee.

“You love coffee.” Harry stated and it wasn’t even meant to be a question as the sight in front of him was so obvious.

Severus had another sip of coffee before he answered. He stared at Harry for a second with such lust in his black eyes that Harry felt himself actually blush from the promising gaze.

“May I ask you something, Harry?”

“Sure…” Harry nodded.

“Do you merely drink coffee because you need the rush of energy it gives you or do you love coffee? You drink it because you enjoy the feeling as the hot, smooth liquid streams down in your throat, leaving behind a distinguished flavour, which cannot be described by any means? Because you worship the intriguing smell of coffee that gives you power to rise from your bed every morning and gives you a few minutes of absolute peace, joy, and satisfaction which are granted to you while that black liquid is slowly pouring down your throat?” Severus whispered the words as if he were talking about a deep secret. Somehow, it reminded Harry about the first speech he ever heard from Severus on their very first Potions class. Harry felt himself become even more aroused.

“Yes.” He moaned and he realized if he didn't loved coffee before, he would love it from now on.

Severus nodded understanding, closing his eyes he took another sip. Then his eyes shot open and he looked directly at Harry. The young man felt like a little rabbit caught in a spotlight.

“And have you ever kissed someone who tasted like coffee?” Severus asked slowly, a smirk playing at the right corner of his mouth.

Harry’s mug knocked loudly on the nightstand as he hurriedly placed it there, just to have two free hands, with which he could grab into his professor’s long black hair and pull him in forcefully for a heated kiss. Harry gasped as his tongue darted into the other man’s mouth, and was met there with the so loved and adored flavour of coffee and Severus Snape. He moaned madly as the taste lingered for long seconds in his own mouth, as his tongue entwined with the other’s causing pleasurable shivers running through his spine.

He climbed into Severus’ lap, who had already put down his own coffee and grasped Harry’s waist, dragging him closer. Severus’ hands slid on the lower side of his thigh then with a swift motion he felt himself lifted in the air. He also felt Severus move, so he was kneeling, and the next moment he was smashed down on the mattress and Severus was lying over him, his whole bodyweight pressing him down, pinning him to the bed as his tongue moved in his mouth, teeth bit into his lips and lips kissed him feverishly. Hands seized his hair, hands roamed on his body, hands were everywhere and he gasped, panting from the sudden rush of lust coming from Severus.

Legs were folded around his waist and Severus thrust against Harry. His hard cock poking the boy through his boxers, impatiently trying to get into Harry, crushing into him, grinding him down into the bed. Hands tangled in his hair, pulling him away from the soft, sweet lips and he grunted at the loss when their lips parted.

“I… can't… breathe…” Harry panted, his swollen lips floating inches under his and he closed the gap swiftly, making the boy moan into his mouth. Severus didn’t know where this eagerness came from but he didn’t even care. He craved for Harry over and over and he was more than willing to give in to a longing of this zealousness.

Harry’s hand reached out and he found what he was searching for. He dipped a finger into his coffee then raised his hand to Severus’ mouth. He pressed his index finger between Severus’ lips and when his tongue rushed out and licked his lover’s finger, he pushed it even deeper.

Severus tasted the coffee on Harry’s fine finger and he moaned as he sucked it into his mouth. He let his raspy tongue go around the tasty skin and licked down the slightly bitter liquid. His teeth bit into Harry’s finger to hold it there, but soon it was out of his mouth and he opened his eyes to see what Harry was doing. To his satisfaction, he watched Harry dig two of his fingers into the mug this time but before he could take them into his mouth, Harry pressed the coffee covered fingers to his neck, drawing a long line.

Severus groaned as he leaned down, his lips and tongue trailing the stripe Harry just sketched on his own skin.

Harry meanwhile arched vehemently against Severus’ wanting body, his naked chest tensed against the other’s, feeling the intensive hotness radiating from Severus. Harry grunted, his whole body trembling in pleasure as hot, wet lips trailed on his skin and his hand was already back in the mug.

The next line started from right behind his left ear and a little drop managed to slide down to his hairline but Severus was fast and he licked it up eagerly, not letting anything be wasted.

“Mmmm… Delicious…”His teeth encaged Harry’s earlobe as he moaned into the boy’s ear.

“More… I want more. Give me more, Harry.” He grunted, his hips thrusting down and forward, making Harry’s body and soul tremble in pleasure.

Harry reached into the mug again, hesitating just for a second, thinking about where the next coffee-line should be drawn but then he quickly pressed his finger over his heart and he moved his hands slowly across his naked chest. Severus’ lips followed him; his tongue darted out, licking him, sucking on his skin, leaving behind red marks.

Harry hissed when he felt teeth scraping on his breast, a thumb circling around his nipple, pressed firmly onto his chest then suddenly caressing him lightly. Palm sliding smoothly over his ribs, fingernails scratching him as he was drawing deep breathes.

“You know…” Severus started, talking into his chest as his mouth was still floating only millimetres over Harry. “I never imagined my adoration for coffee could be increased…”

Newer coffee marks ended up on Harry’s body and Severus felt like he was in heaven as he licked them off, his mouth moving eagerly over the soft skin, tasting the perfect flavour of coffee and Harry. He crept further down on the boy’s slim body, exploring and savouring everything. He bit the soft flesh then placed gentle kisses over the teeth marks he left there.

His hands on Harry’s hips found the thin material of the boy’s boxers and started pulling them down, getting rid of them fast. Harry realized what he was doing and let go of his waist with his legs and pushed up his hips so Severus could easily drag the fabric down, freeing his hard erection.

The boxers landed on the floor but neither paid attention to it as Severus found Harry’s aching cock and coffee covered stomach more exciting. He ran his lips over and over the boy, his raspy tongue removing all the caffeine from Harry. The boy seemed to torture himself, as he didn’t let his hand slide around his cock, knowing that Severus would follow the coffee marks even there. Moreover, that was his desire from the beginning.

Harry paused again, a drop of coffee hanging on the tip of his middle finger. Severus didn’t hesitate; he leaned in and licked the drop up while looking into Harry’s eyes, watching the boy’s reaction. His action made Harry smile lightly and the next line was sketched on Harry’s erection, one finger sliding up on his cock.

Severus grinned before he settled down between Harry’s wide open legs and skimmed the boy’s penis with the tip of his tongue. He heard Harry gasp then groan ardently and saw his shaking hand grabbing into the sheets as Severus’ tongue reached the head. He let his tongue dart out and taste it, before he took the whole tip in his mouth, sucking.

Harry’s fast breathing skipped for a second and Severus was pleased to hear the feverish sounds of excitement leaving the boy’s throat. His right hand went around Harry’s erection and while he sucked it into his mouth enthusiastically, he drew his long fingers up and down on it.

“S… ah… Severus…” Harry gasped and from his faltering, rough voice Severus knew he was already close to coming. He stopped and with a swift motion he moved up to Harry’s ear.

“Do you want me…” He whispered darkly into the boy’s ear, “… to fuck you, or would you rather come into my mouth?”

“Oh geez…” Harry moaned wildly before he pulled Severus in for a heated kiss. “I want to come into your mouth, and then I want you to do me…from behind.” He added with a grin.

“Perfect plan.” Severus muttered as he kissed his way back to Harry’s groin.

 

o.O.o

 

More than an hour later Severus’ mug of coffee was still left abandoned on the nightstand and the two men were lying across each other, still panting, slightly trembling as their sweating, wet bodies touched.

Harry shivered as a hand ghosted on his back and a husky voice whispered into his ear.

“I cannot believe I had spent more than half my Saturday lying in a bed, with my student, having wild sex. I believe I am enjoying this more than I should.”

Harry laughed. “You’re not the only one enjoying himself.”

“Not that I want you to leave but don’t you have homework to do? I remember giving you a hard essay this week and I know you well enough not to even consider that you already finished it…”

“What?!” Harry cried in a painful tone. “How can you even mention homework when ten minutes ago your cock was driving in me so hard you almost fucked me through this bed?!” He grunted slightly angry, looking over his shoulders.

Severus laughed loudly as he rolled away from Harry and the boy couldn’t help it, he smiled too. “We should get up, I am irritated at lying and doing nothing.”

Harry’s eyes opened widely as he leaned on his elbows and looked at his professor disbelieving. “Doing nothing? That, what we did in the last one and a half hours, was nothing to you? I wonder what you’re like when you are actually doing something then…”

Severus smirked evilly. “Don’t worry, Harry. You will know it. Sooner or later, but you will definitely know it.”

“Oh Merlin…” Harry gulped at the promise and he felt a shudder go through his spine. “That sounds promising.”

“You’re fed up with lying here then?” Harry asked slowly. “So what, now you wanna do me against the wall or under the shower or something?” He went on, looking at Severus as innocent as he could.

“You wish.” Severus sneered. “I have some work to do.” When he saw Harry’s pouting lips, he drove his fingers through the messy black hair. “You can stay, if you want.” He said quietly, giving in, according to his feelings, way too soon. Harry only smiled triumphantly.

“I’ll have a quick shower.” Harry jumped out from the bed and walked towards the bathroom. Leaning against the doorframe he stopped and looked back at Severus. “Want to join?”

“I’m afraid it would not be that quick if I were to join you.”

“But it would be more pleasurable.” Harry grinned, sliding a hand on his naked chest seductively.

“It indeed would.” Severus nodded, lust gleaming in his eyes undeniably. “But if I go in there with you, I know perfectly well that I won't come out for several hours.”

“And is that a problem for you, Professor Snape?”

“You see Harry, I have a lot of tests to correct and several potions to brew and if I do not start making them today, I might disappoint my lover tomorrow by not being able to afford even a minute to spend with him when he comes to me eager and desperate.”

“Oh… lucky man that lover of yours must be.” Harry smiled as he turned around and walked out the room.

“I hope he considers himself lucky…” Severus mumbled, getting up from his bed and picking up his clothes from all around the room.

After Harry finished, Severus took a quick shower too. When he came out from the hot water he found that Dobby had taken away all the plates and brought them more coffee instead. Harry was sitting on that settee that he had sat on in the previous nights and was reading a book.

Severus got dressed and poured another mug of coffee as he sat down in his armchair. He observed the boy while drinking the hot liquid. He felt warmer while watching him and he hoped they could have more Saturday afternoons like this.

He gathered the tests, he had to correct and sat beside Harry. He watched amused as Harry turned around, leaning against the armrest he placed his legs in Severus lap. He closed the book and looked at Severus.

“Can I have a parchment and a quill please? Oh and some ink?” He asked.

“Sure.” Severus nodded. “You can find ink and quill on the desk, the parchment is in the third drawer.”

Harry took his wand and mumbled ‘accio’. First the parchment, then the quill and then a little bottle of black ink flew towards him, barely avoiding Severus.

“You brat…” Severus laughed as he was amazed at the boy’s laziness who must have realized that he couldn’t write on only his legs. The next moment a bigger book was flying towards them from across the room.

“Mind if I borrow?” He asked the slightly shocked Severus when the atlas landed in his hand.

“Be my guest.” Severus answered who still couldn’t get over how comfortable the boy felt himself in his room. However, he did like the feeling. “May I ask what you are doing?” He inquired, raising an eyebrow.

“My homework, of course.” Harry answered, already writing the title at the top of the paper. “I found a great book; it will be easy to write it this way.” Harry smirked. “It’s not cheating right? Using the professor’s books to do my work?”

“Oh… no. I don’t think so.” Severus smiled, turning towards his own work.

“And if something goes wrong, I still can ask you, right?” Harry said nonchalantly, his eyes buried in the book in front of him.

Severus snorted. “Forget it.”

“I wouldn’t be ungrateful…” Harry whispered teasing, his bare foot sliding on Severus’ thigh.

Severus grabbed his leg as he sneered. “I said, forget it.”

“I thought it would have some benefits to be with my Potions teacher…” Harry shook his head lightly.

“We are having sex almost every two hours, couldn’t that be considered as a benefit?” Severus raised his eyebrow even higher.

“Hmm… now that you mention it…” Harry laughed. “And when can I get more of this benefit exactly?”

“Insatiable brat.” The Potions Master chuckled. “Let me at least finish correcting half of the tests then we can see how well you tolerate being smacked against the wall with a hard erection moving in you.”

“Oh yes…” Harry moaned, his eyes shimmering with yearning. “It’s a deal.”

“It’s a deal.” Severus nodded and started correcting. Now that he had something to look forward to, it seemed much more fun to correct the stupid mistakes of his stupid students.

Chapter Text

“Oh fuck, yes! Do that again!” Harry cried as Severus thrust into him, hitting his prostate hard. His shoulders banged against the bookshelf, making the Book of South-Indian Healing Herbs fall to the floor. This wasn’t the first time, several books were lying around them, some of them open, some of them closed because they couldn’t bear the forceful tremble of the shelf as Severus drove into Harry, shoving the boy’s body up and against them. Some others were pushed down, when Harry, some time ago, grabbed the edge of the shelf with both hands, using it as a helpful tool to be able to bounce on Severus’ hard erection in his ass.

Harry finished his homework pretty quickly, considering that usually Potions was what took him the longest time to write. He watched Severus for a couple of minutes, but the man didn’t seem to notice him. Harry then saw the huge pile of corrected tests next to his teacher. He smirked as he moved his left foot on Severus thigh. Before the man could realize what he was up to, Harry’s leg reached the professor’s cock, sliding firmly against it.

Since then, things happened just too fast for Harry to be able to remember everything. He could recall a dark, lustful gaze on his body and fierce lips on his mouth. There were strong arms around him and then over his ass, pulling him up. But then, the next moment he was thrown against the wall and he was completely naked. Maybe it was a spell, maybe he lost consciousness from the heated kisses, and he wouldn’t be surprised by that either…

Oh and then came those wet, warm and smooth fingers. Two of them pushing, sliding into his ass. Then suddenly it was three fingers in that place and teeth on his ear. Teeth which left raw bite marks on his neck and lips, which sucked on his skin lustily.

And then came; the one moment he could recall precisely, each and every detail of the memory showing up in his mind. The fingers disappeared at the same moment, as the lips from his skin. Two incredibly dark eyes connected with his and he saw the teeth biting into the swollen lower lip. Then he felt the lightly poking erection at his entrance, sliding in slowly, easily.

Severus dictated a slow rate at first but this time it wasn’t the excruciatingly slow pace, it wasn’t a pleasing torture for either of them. They both felt the incredible sensation as the Professor’s hard manhood slid in his student’s tight ass then out, leaving Harry feeling empty. But of course neither of them was able to hold this speed for too much time.

And that is why Harry’s back was, once again, pushed ferociously against the shelf now, with deep, raw thrusts, making Severus gasp ardently into Harry’s ear and the boy moaning wildly into the neck he was nipping on.

“Interesting…” Severus murmured and Harry jerked, trembled as he felt how the lips formed the letters and the dark voice resonated in his ear.

“What?” He asked numbly.

“You. I made you come countless times in less than eighteen hours and yet you seem like you haven’t had sex in ages.” Severus whispered and let his lower lips slide along Harry’s outer ear.

“Well…” Harry mumbled, his mouth creeping on Severus’ neck until he reached the ear. “I didn’t have any in the last fifteen years, did I?” He chuckled darkly and got a slight shiver as a reward.

“Oh, Merlin,” Severus growled and stopped his movements to look into the boy’s eyes. “Are you intentionally reminding me, that what I am now doing is, in fact, a crime?” He raised an eyebrow.

“You mean, seducing your student, jerking him out in an empty corridor of Hogwarts, then having fierce sex with him for hours until both of you literally collapse on the bed, just to wake up at noon and continue where you finished the night before…no sorry in the morning, and do him again, torturing him with pleasure until he’s begging for you to fuck him. And then about an hour later sucking him off, adding a little coffee to the game increasing the experience from the level of indescribably amazing to even more remarkable, and some time later fucking him into oblivion yet again? Did I miss anything?” Harry asked innocently, both his eyebrows raised.

“Uhh…We did eat at some point during the process but other than that… I believe, you listed everything. So, help me count it, how many times exactly did I commit an unforgivable crime against a child, who is, to make it even worse, my student?” Severus asked slowly, frowning. He knew he shouldn’t really think about this but…

“Now as I recall them,” Harry went on, “I wouldn’t call them ‘crimes’, would you? It felt more like a reward, actually.” Harry whispered teasingly, lips skimming on soft skin over Severus’ neck. “There is only one crime you committed in the past whoever knows how many hours. You… stopped… moving.” With every word, Harry’s hips bucked up and down, sliding around Severus’ rigid shaft.

They both let out a harsh groan as Severus joined in, slowly increasing the force of his movements until he was thrusting into Harry with the same intense speed as before. Harry let go of the shelf and his hands went around Severus’ shoulders as he was smashed against the books over and over again. He pressed his lips over the mouth only inches from him. He wanted to kiss the sweet lips long and deep but as Severus’ cock drove into him, reaching a very sensitive point, the kiss became a short one with a lot of nipping, biting, and sucking as fervent groans and moans broke out from the depth of his throat.

“Harry…ah… Harry…” The boy heard his name and already knew Severus was close. He tightened his legs around the other man’s waist and moved faster, wilder until he heard the harsh, husky cry and felt the warm semen fill him up. That was more than enough for him to reach his orgasm, joining Severus with eager gasps.

After a while, when Severus felt that his legs weren’t shaking anymore, he dared speak, hoping his voice wasn’t all cracked. Well it was, but then Harry jerked around him once again and he realized it was because of his voice.

“Is this just sex for you, Harry?” He asked the boy quietly, giving tiny kisses over the red sucking marks. He feared the answer however, he suspected, (hoped?), he had nothing to be afraid of.

Harry felt taken aback for a second. Then he gathered all his Gryffindor courage and answered looking into the black eyes.

“Of course not. Yes, I want your body around mine and yes, I very much like it when we have sex but I also want…”

“What?” Severus asked gently.

“You… all of you. I want to earn your friendship and respect. I want to know you. The real you. I love… just being with you, sitting next to you when you’re correcting, or eating or… drinking coffee.” He said with a little smile at the corner of his mouth. “Would you be satisfied with only sex?”

“Oh Harry… I… don’t know. Half of me is determined, that I’d hex you out of here and be even more cruel with you than before, if you would only came to me for sex, but the other half… the other half whispers desperately that if you wanted only sex… I would gladly grant it to you, as long as I could keep you in my hands, even if it were for only those passionate minutes…

Harry felt himself melt at the words. He kissed Severus gently on the lips. “Why don’t we go back to the couch? Not that I’m complaining or anything, it actually feels good to be…khm…filled with you.” Harry whispered and felt himself blush. It was actually a surprise, taking into account what they had been doing in the past day. But Severus’ deep growl surprised him even more.

Fuck Harry. I do not believe that you are aware of the effects of your words on me.” Severus moaned darkly.

“Effects?” Harry raised an eyebrow.

“Do you really think that you admitting to actually enjoying the sensation of my cock in your ass, while I am not actually having sex with you, simply… holding you, won't have any effect on me?” Severus kissed Harry’s jaw then slowly started moving downwards on his throat. “It does Harry, it very much does.” He whispered then and moved his hips lightly.

“Ahh… that’s…ahh…that’s a good thing to…ahh…hear.” Harry gasped as slowly, really slowly he felt his professor’s shaft sliding out of him. He wrapped his arms firmly around Severus’ neck as he lowered his legs to the floor. He was completely naked, while the other man was wearing his pants and a ripped shirt. He watched Severus as he pulled up his zipper then let his gaze slide upwards.

“Uhh… sorry about that.” Harry mumbled, adjusting the two sides of the shirt.

“It can be fixed easily.” Severus smiled mischievously, shaking down the cloth from his shoulders.

“Uh, and for that too…” Harry murmured pointing at the belt he had ripped with a cutting spell.

Severus started backing off towards the couch as he slid the black leather belt out from his pants. “That can also be fixed…”

Harry watched the man getting further away from him, every piece of clothing he wore that Harry had ruined, falling slowly to the ground. He wanted to get rid of those pants to but they were unharmed. He tried to think of a good excuse for removing them but just one thing came to his mind. First, he considered it a bit too drastic but then… he just walked up the Severus.

“Oh and…” He grabbed the man’s pants and pulled down the fastener. Then with a hard clutch, he tore it down from the man. His eyes were fixed on Severus as the man threw his head back, a light but fervent moan escaping him. “…sorry for this too.”

“It is completely alright.” Severus whispered, stepping out from the last of his clothing, lying down on his couch. He reached a hand towards Harry. When fingers joined in with his, he pulled Harry over him. He watched the boy as he settled over this body, a leg between his, groin against groin, stomach against stomach, chest against chest, heart against heart, beating the same rhythm. Harry’s head was at his neck, he shivered from the sensation of light, wet kisses on his throat and then jaw. He pulled Harry in for a long but mild kiss before he let his hand slide over the bare back and the other caress Harry’s mane.

“Why don’t you sleep a bit? I will watch your dreams so they do not harm you.” He suggested with a light tone.

“How do you know I have nightmares? Dumbledore?” Harry asked, raising his head, looking into the onyx eyes.

Severus smiled. “You did sleep next to me this dawn, did you not?”

Harry chuckled and gave a soft kiss to Severus. “You know me too well…” he murmured, shaking his head lightly but he was still smiling as he let his head rest on Severus’ chest.

“Try to sleep as well,” He whispered into the man’s skin before he closed his eyes. “I want you rested and ready when I wake up.”

“Ready for what exactly?” Severus raised an eyebrow. He was surprised to hear his voice go husky and dark.

“You will see, Severus. You will see…” Harry mumbled before he drifted fast asleep.

Severus closed his eyes and for a second wondered about the impossible craziness of the world. If someone had told him that today he would be lying naked on his couch, taking a nap on a Saturday afternoon, with an also naked Harry Potter on his chest, he would have sent that man to St. Mungo’s. And still, here he was. Here they were. Harry Potter and Severus Snape, lovers.

The world had gone mad. But he loved it like this.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry was the first one to wake up this time. It was late afternoon, evening maybe, he thought as he looked out into the darkness on the other side of the windows. Soon he had to go back to the Gryffindor Tower. He was sure Ron and Hermione were already looking for him. Ron must have been shocked when he noticed that Harry was out of bed before him and then couldn’t find him anywhere.

How would he tell this to his friends? How would he convince them that Severus was not who they thought he was. Would they believe him? Would they accept the man? He knew it wouldn’t matter if they didn’t, he would still be with Severus, and he was sure about that. But he would be happier, if he didn’t need to hide this relationship from them. This relationship, which had only lasted a day and already caused him so much happiness and joy.

He looked up at the man, at his lover. He watched the soft hair, which framed the pale face and let a finger slide through it. Then he watched the strong jaw, the long, cracked nose, the wrinkles on the forehead and his finger followed his gaze. Then his look wandered onto the thin, pink lips, which he knew, tasted like the sweetest peach. He leaned down and took the lower lips between his lips, then the upper one. He smoothly nipped on them with his teeth until he felt a hand slither back into his hair and the man under him fidget. Severus’ mouth opened, and his tongue darted out, right in between Harry’s lips and the soft kiss suddenly turned alight.

Severus moaned eagerly as he felt Harry’s hand sneak between their entangled bodies and around his half erected cock. Gasping, their lips parted.

“What a nice way to wake a man, Mister Potter.” He panted; his head fell back as the fingers worked on him firmly to make him hard and ready for what Harry wanted.

“Oh Professor Snape, I know an even better one, but I’ll save that for later…” Harry smirked as he slid down from Snape and kneeled in front of the couch. “Sit up Severus…”

Before his mind could resist the order, Severus obeyed. He sat up on the couch and placed his legs on both sides of Harry, suspecting what the boy had in mind.

“Harry, however I appreciate the idea very much, you do not have to-” He started, already feeling a blush creeping up on his cheeks.

“Yes, I have to.” Harry said smugly as he kissed his knees. “I have to, because soon, I have to go back to the tower, before Ron and Hermione go to McGonagall and tell her I’m missing.” He whispered, kissing his way up to Severus’ groin. “And when I’m there, unfortunately, you can't be with me. Therefore, I have to do this, because I want, need, your taste to linger in my mouth until I can be with you again.” He said looking into the obsidian eyes, knowing that the lust and the desire was clearly visible in his gaze.

Harry couldn’t help but notice how Severus’ erection twitched from his words. He licked his lower lip as he watched the other man moan harshly and throw his head back when his hand went around the rigid cock, moving slowly.

“Ah… Harry…”

“Don’t worry, I’m not going to do anything…naughty to you.” He whispered with a smirk as he leant over the weeping erection.

Severus let out a chuckle as he recognized the sentence he said to Harry three days ago, but the sound quickly turned into a breathless groan, as he felt hot lips go around the tip of his cock.

That is the exact opposite of ‘not naughty’, Harry. Surely you know that too…” He gasped heavily as the boy drove his cock deeper into his mouth, sucking it hard. “Oh Merlin, that’s just fucking sinful…”

Harry couldn’t help it, he moaned as the harsh voice reached his ears. He slipped the hard member out of his mouth and rubbed his fingers up and down on it as he looked at Severus with a wicked grin.

“What did you expect, Professor? I’m an impish brat, after all…” Harry smirked but it was cut off as soon as Severus leaned close to him, lips floating only inches away.

“Careful there, Mister Potter. Impish brats always get …” Severus flicked his tongue out, licking Harry’s lips, which were shining with pre-cum. “…punished.” A raw, wild growl came from deep in Harry’s throat before he pressed his lips fervently on Severus’.

“Well then… I should not behave too wayward, should I?” Harry whispered darkly, pushing the professor back against the couch, his tongue already sliding on the hard erection in his hand, while his gaze never broke its connection with the obsidian eyes.

“Correct, Mister Potter.” Severus moaned and that was his last coherent thought because then Harry’s mouth went around his cock again and sucked him in deeply. His hand darted out to the soft dark brown mane and grabbed it firmly.

Not taking his eyes off of his lover, Harry’s right hand slid over the naked chest, caressing, while his left was around the base of the weeping erection he sucked in his mouth. It was too big for him to take in all of it, but from the fervent gasps he suspected that Severus enjoyed it this way too.

And Severus did indeed enjoy it. He enjoyed the sensation of curious fingers sliding on his body, exploring every inch of him, wandering over sensitive places, which made him sigh harshly. He also enjoyed the sensation of Harry’s hair between his fingers as the boy moved on his cock. And of course he enjoyed the raspy tongue moving wildly around and sliding firmly over his rock hard erection. He liked the wetness and warmness of that mouth and he adored the clever tongue and the fingers but he simply loved that emerald green pair of eyes that watched his every move, that stared at him with intense heat, which alone was able to make his heart drum excitedly under his sweaty chest. He loved how the beautiful eyes observed his reactions, how the heat they radiated melted the ice around his heart.

Harry groaned. The sight in front of him was beautiful. He didn’t think if Severus could look more amazing but then, when he cupped his balls and started massaging them, both of Severus’ hands flew to the back of the couch and his lower back arched away from the settee.

“Harry…!” Came a husky cry and Harry almost came from the combination of the image in front of him and the sound in his ears.

“Severus, move.” He ordered; his own voice also harsh and deeper than usual. “Thrust into me Severus.”

“Harry… oh Merlin, Harry!” Severus cried again but his hips bucked up and the rigid erection slid deeper into Harry’s mouth, who was willing and keen to take as much in as possible.

“Harder please… Harry, please more…” Came the fervent gasps again and Harry couldn’t do otherwise, he moved without any control, sucking eagerly, kissing, teasing the other into oblivion. He let his teeth slide over the hard cock very lightly, almost feather like, and when he saw Severus’ head slap back with a zealous moan he did it again.

“Harry… I can't….Harry…” Severus grunted as his hips moved unrestrained up and down, his hands gripping into the leather fabric of the couch so wildly they might tear it apart, but he didn’t mind. He forgot to think, he almost forgot to exhale as moaning passionately he drove into Harry’s mouth.

Harry was close to coming as he was looking at Severus being so alight just because of him. He felt the slim body under him jerk vehemently and sucked the manhood between his lips even harder. Severus’ waist rose to midair, only his shoulders were touching the couch, as he came, shooting his seed into Harry’s mouth, still thrusting into him with unadjusted moves.

Harry watched Severus, trying to engrave every detail into his mind and as he felt the warm semen on his tongue, he came too, without being touched at all because what he saw and what he felt was way too much for him. A long, deep growl broke out from his throat as his body jerked too and he could feel it as Severus shuddered yet again.

Panting, he collapsed over Severus’ waist. He didn’t feel the gentle fingers in his hair until the bliss of his orgasm subsided. Then he looked up at Severus, who raised an eyebrow at him. Harry blushed a deeper shade of red.

Severus pulled Harry up into standing position again and saw the white semen streaming on the boy’s leg. This time, he slid down from the couch to kneel in front of Harry. Watching the other wizard with the same intensity Severus was looking at him, he drove his tongue over Harry’s semen.

“You came… just by watching me?” He asked teasingly, giving tiny kisses over the wet skin.

Harry gulped and nodded. “You were…so… fervent…and…you were…burning….so beautiful, Severus…” Harry gasped as he felt the silky tongue sliding on his skin, cleaning him.

When he was done, Severus stood up slowly and his hands gripped Harry’s hips, pulling him closer and then, when Harry was close enough and their bodies were pressed against each other so tightly not even a feather could have had any room there, his hands moved up on the bare back, caressing lovingly.

“Thank you, Harry. But if you saw me beautiful, it was all due to your merit.” He smiled at the boy and gave him a soft kiss. “You were amazing.” He added and more kisses followed the sentence.

“No matter how hard it is for me to tell you this, but I am afraid you should go, Harry. It would not be wise to wait until Dumbledore comes here, grabbing me to help find you, while you are lying in my bed, naked… he would come to a wrong conclusion.”

“Wrong conclusion?” Harry smiled, not going anywhere from the warm embrace. “How could he misunderstand that scene, really?”

“He might think I kidnapped you and forced my way on you while you resisted very hard.” Severus said and was surprised at the angry gaze in the emerald eyes.

“He would seriously think you raped me, Severus? That’s just…”

“Is it? So far, he assumes, however incorrectly, that I hate you and you hate me. Would that be such a mistaken assumption for him to think I took you without your permission?”

“You would never do such a thing.” Harry stated without any hesitation. Severus smirked at that.

“So much trust you have in me… Let me inform you, young Potter, that on that evening I first drove my tongue over your skin, only one thing kept me from having sex with you right here on this couch. I wanted to play with you even more… That, and only that, saved you on that evening. Even I don’t know what I would have done if you had said no. So I would not trust me that much, if I were you…” Severus whispered dangerously and Harry moaned.

“Just one word.” Harry said determined then. “I just have to say one word and even if you are fervently driving into me with an aching, agonizingly hard erection, you would stop. And I am certain aboutthat, Severus.”

“Good for you, Harry… Good for you.”

 

o.O.o

 

Harry wandered the empty, dark corridors alone. Thanks to Dobby, he had more clothes on him now, than on the night he had run out from his dorm. After a refreshing shower, he kissed Severus goodbye and left the room where he had first slept with his professor less than a day ago. And although he had been about of the room for exactly seven minutes and thirty-two seconds he already wanted to return. But first, he had to find his friends.

He was near the tower when suddenly someone cried out behind him.

“Harry! Finally Harry!” Hermione ran up to him with Ron on her heels. “We searched through the whole castle for you! I was so worried! Where have you been?” Hermione asked, throwing herself around him.

“Yeah mate, we were worried. You weren’t in your bed when I woke up and we haven’t been able to find you since then. We thought that Umbridge had done something nasty to you. She seemed too cheerful this morning…” Ron shook his head.

Harry felt like someone had just hit him in the guts. He thought he would have some time to prepare for this conversation. He wanted to get ready and sort his thoughts before he had to confess.

“Uh… let’s go in there…” He pointed into an empty classroom next to them. They walked in and the door closed behind them. Harry sat down on a desk and cleared his throat several times. It didn’t help him that he still tasted Severus in his mouth.

“Oh god.” Ron gasped. “What’s that on your neck Harry?”

Hermione covered her eyes with a hand then slid it over her face, as if saying ‘you stupid idiot’.

Harry immediately touched the not so small bite mark on his neck. Not good, so not good.

“Wow, Harry! You were with Cho, right?” Ron asked with a smirk.

To Harry’s surprise it was Hermione who cried out before he could even recall the girl’s face.

“Cho?! Even you can't be that blind, Ron! Harry’s gay.” Hermione shot Ron an apathetic look.

“Gay? No way, Hermione.” Ron laughed.

Hermione raised an eyebrow at Ron then looked at Harry shyly, blushing. “I am sorry Harry. I saw you with him yesterday morning. I saw, how you flirted with him. What you did with that peach was way too obvious…”

“You were there?” Harry asked and for a minute, he forgot he should be worried.

Hermione smiled a bit as she said, “I sat right next to you, but you didn’t even notice me. Then you suddenly jumped up and went out and he followed you. I thought he… well…”

“He wanted to kill me?” Harry asked, almost laughing now. Yeah, that’d be logical.

“Yeah.” Hermione nodded with a bashful smile. “So I followed him and I saw him meet with you but then Umbridge came and-”

“What?! Umbridge was there?” Harry cried out with fear.

“It’s okay,” Hermione hurried to calm him. “She didn’t see anything. I told her I saw Peeves on the third floor messing with the paintings so she rushed up there. But... I was so worried about you Harry, I didn’t know what he was doing with you… so when I met with Sir Nicholas I asked him to help you. I told him that Dumbledore was searching for Snape and that I saw him go in that room and that I don’t really want to meet with him. I said nothing about you and Sir Nicolas was nice and said, it was all right, he would fetch Snape, so I can go. And I went up to the common room and… and… Ron, what’s wrong with you?!” Hermione huffed irritated as he looked at the laughing Ron next to her.

“Hermione… You can’t be serious. From what you said…” Ron chuckled through gritted teeth, “it sounds like… Harry’s been flirting with… with… Snape.” Ron laughed out again.

He didn’t notice that neither Hermione nor Harry laughed with him.

“Why didn’t you say me something about it yesterday?” Harry asked.

“Well Harry, you can't really expect me to stand in front of you asking if you really did flirt with your male professor and what his reaction was.” Hermione said shrugging her shoulders. But then she peeked at Harry with hint of a smile in the corner of her lips. “What was his reaction? You were with him right?” She asked with a hoping tone.

Harry blushed but before he could answer, Ron slapped him on the arm. “C’mon mate, tell her, she’s crazy.” He grinned.

“She’s… not, Ron.” He looked into the deep blue eyes of his friend. “She’s right about everything. I am gay and I did flirt with Snape and I… and I was with him until now. Oh my god…” He said fast and with the last word Harry leant back on the desk.

Hermione let out a little surprised squeal and then covered her mouth with both her hands. Ron meanwhile stared at him with wide open eyes.

“What?! But I thought you and Cho… Harry…why didn’t you… this is crazy.” He mumbled, collapsing into a chair next to Harry.

“I know Ron and I’m sorry I’ve never said a word about my… preferen-” Harry started but Ron cut in his speech.

“Who cares about you being gay, mate. I’m talking about you and…and…Merlin, Harry, he’s the Greasy Git of the Dungeons, remember?” Ron said, driving ten fingers through his flaming red hair.

Harry and Hermione both shot him a killer look, so he cleverly chose to shut up.

“What happened yesterday, Harry?” Hermione asked gently and Harry was grateful he could talk about this with someone.

“He ordered me into that room and asked me what I wanted. I told him, that all I wanted was him.”

“Just like that? Harry, you’re lucky to be still alive!” Hermione grinned painfully.

“Oh no, not exactly. The previous days… I was at detention with Umbridge, you know and after the detention we met and he… he took me to his room and… god he… he cured me but how he did it… it was…”

“I think I don’t want to hear it…” Ron said while covering his ears. He started humming quietly, looking out the windows. He missed the murderous glance Hermione shot at him once again.

The girl sat down next to Harry’s other side, knowing exactly how much Harry needed someone right now that he could talk to about Snape.

Harry looked at her and after he got a reassuring nod, he went on. “It was amazing Hermione. He kneeled in front of me and he drank this potion and then licked my hand. Licked it, you understand? I was out of my mind.” Harry laughed bitterly. “I was immediately so…uhm…”

“I got it…” The girl said blushing lightly, however smiling.

“He just played with me, nothing really happened. Then he put that scarf on me…”

S.S.! It was him! That was why he stopped behind you that morning, wasn’t it?” Hermione slapped her forehead. None of them noticed that the humming stopped.

Harry nodded and closed his eyes. “After he was done with the scarf I wanted to go away, I wanted to run from him, but he didn’t let me. The door was closed and I had to guess the password.”

“Like some weird cat-mouse play…” Ron snorted.

“Exactly.” Harry, raising an eyebrow, nodded again. “Geez, I literally begged for him to…to do something…”

“What did he do?” Hermione asked eagerly.

“He opened the door and I fell out into the corridor.” Harry laughed out again. “He walked next me and acted like nothing happened. It was awful but in a sort of way…a sort of relief.” Hermione nodded, she could understand that.

“That happened on Wednesday night, right? And then? What was on Thursday and Friday and today? Oh Harry…”

“Next day we met again. Almost the same, he walked me to his room and I sat down and he kneeled down in front of me, drank to potion and he licked my scar again. And… and I grabbed his hair.”

Ron snorted again, but Hermione let out another surprised cry.

“And no Ron, before you ask, it wasn’t greasy it was, man… it was soft. Don’t laugh, back then I thought I signed my death wish with that one move.” Harry huffed but couldn’t help it, he smiled too.

“What did he do? You seem alive to me…” Ron asked then.

“He moaned.” Harry whispered holding his breath. When both his friend’s jaw dropped he went on. “And then he started kissing my arm and neck and he talked to me and I… oh fuck.”

“I think we both understand that.” Hermione laughed.

“Why am I telling you this?” Harry asked, covering his eyes with his arm.

“I don’t know mate, but please hurry up before Hermione gets off on this…” Ron laughed and Hermione blushed deep red before she gave a slap to Ron’s head.

“I won't; shut up Ron!” She exclaimed, and then turned back to Harry. “Nothing happened that night I assume, you were back in the common room sometime after midnight, right?”

“Yeah, but that night again, he walked me back to the tower. When I thanked him, he said I shouldn’t be so grateful, he barely gave me something… Yeah sure. I told him that that was the last day of my detention and he just said, he knows me too well and surely that wasn’t my last detention. And I don’t know what was with me at that moment but when he turned around to go away, I shouted after him and when he stopped… I… I… grabbed him from behind…”

Where exactly did you grab him?” Hermione asked holding back her breath.

“His chest and… his… his… he was hard.” Harry spit it out almost inaudibly.

The effect was amazing. Hermione went into deep red, carmine red, like a rose, while Ron simply fell off his chair, opening and closing his mouth while not even a word came out of it. When he finally found his voice, and scrambled back onto his chair he sulked as he spoke to Harry.

Warn me next time you say something like that, would you! I almost had a heart-attack!” Ron yelled and Hermione started laughing. “It’s not funny! How would you feel if Ginny were to tell you about how much fun she had with McGonagall? Would you still laugh, eh Hermione?”

“Snape is not like McGonagall.” Hermione stated before Harry could hit Ron. “He’s much younger and…”

“What, nicer?” Ron asked with a raised eyebrow. Then they both looked at Harry, waiting for information.

“He’s so much different than what you think…” Harry sighed but then a wicked grin appeared on his lips. “I gripped his cock and I’m still alive. He’s so much nicer than McGonagall.” Hermione, still red as a rose, burst into laughter, while Ron almost fell off his chair again.

“I’m so gonna kill you, mate!”

“Go on, Harry. So he let you walk away?”

“I think he was too shocked to do anything else. When he finally moved, I was already in the common room. Until that point, I thought, I was the only one having a hard time-”

“Literally…”

“-with this whole situation,” Harry went on with only a side glance at Ron’s hint. “I wouldn’t even dare dream that he would be…attracted to me…”

“Which he evidently was…”

Harry laughed. “Yeah… So next morning… I couldn’t help it.”

“You flirted with him.” Hermione finished. “What happened in that classroom? After you told him you…khm…want him…”

“Nothing much just some…uhm… Ron, cover your ears. So, just some khm... touching here and there…” He said and he felt his cheeks go the same colour as Hermione’s. “But then Nick appeared and we had to leave.”

“Oh my god, Harry I’m so sorry, I didn’t know… I never imagined he… well… that he didn’t want to kill you for what you had done…” Hermione smiled sheepishly but Harry simply nodded, knowing that the girl was exactly right. What had happened was really unexpected.

“You were totally edgy during that whole day. You didn’t speak and jumped every time someone mentioned Snape. You… you always looked like… you were searching for someone…” Ron murmured, remembering. “It was him, right? You searched for him…”

“Yes. But I couldn’t find him. He was nowhere. I searched for him the whole day after lessons, but still didn’t find him. Then at about midnight, I realized I should use the map and find him there. He was in his room and I ran there. No one opened the door and I was about to come back to the tower when… when he just appeared in front of me…”

Hermione gulped. “Then?”

“Ron, ears.” Harry waited until his friend covered both ears and started humming, before he sat up and went on with speaking. “Are you sure you want to hear it?” He asked the girl with a raised eyebrow.

Hermione gulped again and nodded. “Only if you really want to tell me. But please not too many details.”

“He literally smashed me against the wall and almost… god Hermione, we were totally out of control. I was way too loud and he was way too eager and… he…”

“You had sex with him in a corridor?” Hermione asked, gaping.

“No, not actual sex… just…”  Harry looked at his hand than back at Hermione. She seemed to understand it as she went even redder.

“And…? That doesn’t explain where you were the whole night and today…”

“And then, McGonagall showed up there.”

“Oh my god!” Hermione yelled. “Did she see you with Snape?”

“Pff, poor woman…” Ron laughed.

“No, she didn’t. Severus sent me inside his room before he spoke with McGonagall…”

“Severus?” Hermione asked nicely, beaming at Harry.

“Inside his room?” Ron asked mocking, grinning at Harry.

“I think I can guess what happened when you were inside his room…” Ron smirked then.

“Ron!” Hermione gave him another slap. “Don’t be stupid, Harry just said he didn’t sleep with Snape.”

Ron laughed hard. “No Hermione. Harry said he didn’t have sex with Snape in the corridor. What do you think they were doing the whole night? Playing chess?”

“Harry didn’t… Did you Harry?” Hermione looked at her mischievously smiling friend.

Harry’s hand slithered on the bite mark on his neck and he thought about the others that covered his body. And then he simply let a broad, happy smile spread on his lips.

“No way! Harry you slept with Snape?!” Hermione cried.

“Shush, Hermione! Quiet!” Harry hissed, listening for any noise coming from outside.

“Sorry, sorry…” Hermione looked around, listening too.

“Mate…” Ron shook his head.

They remained in silence for a couple minutes, before Hermione spoke quietly again.

“What is he like? When it’s just the two of you I mean…”

Harry thought for a second.

“He’s nice. He wanted me to sleep with him. And I mean sleep. After we… after we had sex I wanted to come back to… you know…give him space or whatnot… but he told me to stay. He showed me a side of him, I’ve never seen before. He’s so worried about Voldemort, that if he finds out about this, us, he will hurt me. He’s not worried about himself, just about me. He was scared, literally pale white, when Dobby brought us breakfast today and he saw us together. So he’s so caring. And he’s also wild. Oh yeah, so wild and passionate. And funny I never imagined he had a sense of humour actually, but he does have one.” Harry smiled. “It’s nice just being with him even if we’re not talking. This afternoon, he was correcting tests and I did my homework, for instance. And it was somewhat good, you know…Oh shit, I left my homework in his room.”

Ron looked at him disbelievingly but didn’t make any comment on the adjectives Harry used. He stared at his friend for a while before he slapped him on the arm lightly. “That’s all that matters, mate…”

“What?!” Harry and Hermione looked at him almost shocked.

“What do you mean ‘what’?” He asked frowning.

“Well…I… expected you… you not to speak to me ever again after you realize I’m gay and sleeping with our Potions Professor, that you hate.”

“Never talk to you again because you’re gay? C’mon Harry, this is the Wizarding World. Being gay is as normal as magic.” Ron laughed. “You being with Snape… well… It’s not really my business, is it? I mean, if you want to be with him and he wants to be with you… why would I be against it? Until you start talking to me about what he’s doing in bed, I’m totally okay with it.” Ron smiled at Harry and blushed instantly when he noticed that Hermione was beaming at him proudly.

“I do hope he would not attempt at talking about such topics unless he wants a gag in his mouth.” Rumbled a deep, smooth voice behind them. Harry, jumping down from the desk, turned towards the door. “But Harry, if you still feel you are comfortable with sharing the details of our sex life, I think I should do something even more original to make you not feel so comfortable speaking about it…”

Leaning against the doorframe was his lover, holding his homework, with his arms folded.

“Severus! What…?”

“You left this in my room, you dimwit.” He said with a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth.

“What can I say,” Harry smirked. “I had something else on my mind.”

“I don’t even want to ask what that could be…” Severus gave him a teasing smile then looked at the other two in the room.

“Miss Granger, Mr. Weasley.” He nodded towards them.

“Sir.” Ron nodded back lightly, trying hard not to grin.

“Professor Snape.” Hermione welcomed him too, with a little more success in holding back her smile.

Severus turned back to Harry as he walked in the classroom, closing the door behind him. “How could I have even had hope that you would keep something this important a secret…” he shook his head.

“You never really believed I wouldn’t tell Ron and Hermione, did you?” Harry raised an eyebrow.

Severus sighed before he answered. “You’re right.”

“So… you heard everything?” Harry asked, blushing deep red again.

“From the moment Miss Granger was accused she enjoyed the conversion just a bit too much, yes, almost everything.”

“Why didn’t you say something?” Harry asked, ignoring the flushed Hermione.

“To deny the pleasure from Mr. Weasley? He won't have another chance in his life to laugh at my… hard situation, if you know what I mean.”

Harry snorted but Ron remained calm. “Sir if it makes you feel any better, I wasn’t laughing. I almost fainted.” He murmured calmly, staring at his shoes.

“I can imagine, Mr. Weasley.” Severus said with a hint of laughter in his voice. Then he turned towards Harry and the smile disappeared from his face. “Harry, here is your homework. Next time, please make sure that the door behind you is closed and no one can hear you in the corridors if you are detailing our emotional and sexual relationship.”

“I’m sorry Severus.” Harry mumbled with eyes on the ground. Suddenly, two fingers were on his jaw, raising up his chin.

“As you said, I am indeed worried and scared, I do admit that.” Severus said gently, looking into the emerald eyes. Then, completely forgotten about their company, he leant down and kissed Harry with the same tenderness and Harry felt himself melt again.

Suddenly Severus heard someone clearing his throat. It was Ron.

“Sir…” The boy said hesitantly.

“Yes Mr. Weasley?” Severus raised an eyebrow. He and Harry walked closer to the other two so they could speak more quietly.

“Can I speak freely, Sir?”

“You have five minutes, so be quick.” He nodded.

“With respect Sir, if I hear that you harm Harry in any way, I will kick your ass so badly you won't be able to sit ever again. Then I tell everything to my brothers and Ginny and they will also kick your ass pretty badly. Just for your information…” Ron said in a rush, but always looking into the onyx eyes.

What Severus said, surprised everyone.

“By any means I do not have any intention of harming your friend at all, except of course if he specifically asks for it. But I’m grateful for your warning and to show you how honestly I mean this; I now, with Miss Granger and Harry as my witnesses, give you and your siblings the permission to do so, if by any chance I cause harm to Harry.”

“Are you sure, Sir? I can kick strongly. And I’m sure George and Fred wouldn’t go easy on you either.” Ron asked with a small smile in the corner of his mouth.

Severus reached a hand towards Ron.

“I am, indeed, absolutely sure, Mister Weasley.” He said then, with a resolute nod.

Ron eyed the hand for a second, and then accepted it, also determined. Severus gripped him by the hand and pulled Ron closer.

“But, Mister Weasley, mark my words. If you or Miss Granger ever mention this relationship to a soul, I will make your life terrible. You will both regret every day of living and will wish for Death to take you. But it will not. And you will suffer through your entire lifetime. Because that one, accidentally slipped word, can cause Harry’s death. And that, would make me really angry. And believe me when I say that you don’t want to see me really angry.” The last was words only harsh whispers.

 “Yes, Sir.” Ron nodded and there wasn’t really fear in his eyes, only determination. Severus looked at Hermione who nodded too, unable to open her mouth in terror. Only then did Severus let go Ron’s hand.

“You are so sweet, both of you.” Harry grinned at the scene.

Ron looked at Severus intentionally for a moment, his gaze observing the man from top to toe, then back.

“Yes, Mister Weasley?” Of course, Severus didn’t miss it.

Shaking his head lightly, Ron mumbled, “You must be freaking good at sex…”

Hermione gasped and grabbed Ron’s arm. “What, my five minutes is not over yet.” Ron said grinning.

Severus smirked on the comment. “You see Mister Weasley, as far as I know… I am indeed… How did you put it Harry? A sex god?”

Harry nodded, trying to hide his grin. He turned to Ron. “He’s awesome. It’s freaking madness what he does in bed.”

“Or against the wall…” Severus added, stepping next to Harry.

“Yes, or against the wall.”

“Mate. Shut up before I vomit.” Ron laughed with Hermione still grabbing onto his arm, however not shaking anymore that she knew hes friend wouldn’t be killed because of his big mouth.

“Miss Granger, I give you, too, permission to speak freely, if that is, what keeps you from talking. It feels too out of ordinary that in a conversation I do not hear your voice.”

Harry caught Ron’s grin and Hermione’s blushing.

“I told you, he has humour.” Harry grinned.

But Hermione didn’t seem offended when she spoke up.

“I take the chance, Sir.”

“Be my guest.” Severus waved his hand and Hermione spoke immediately.

“I probably know more spells, charms, and potions than any other student in this school and maybe I’m not as good at using them as you, I can still make your life miserable, if you harm him.” Hermione said, pointing at Harry. At that moment, she looked like the smaller version of McGonagall.

“I understand.” Severus nodded and Harry started liking the man even more, seeing how seriously he considered his friends. It looked like even Ron and Hermione were surprised that Severus didn’t laugh at them or mock them.

“Great.” Hermione said cheerfully then, with a broad smile on his face.

“Don’t be so happy, Hermione…” Ron poked her in the ribs.

“Why not? This is like a book I read. It was about a teacher who fell in love with his student. In the book the student was girl but…”

Harry couldn’t hear the girl’s rambling about the muggle book she’d once read. A word was stuck in his mind. He looked up at Severus and found his gaze locked with a mesmerizing pair of obsidian eyes, intentionally staring at him.

Love?

Chapter Text

Harry had never, ever in his life felt this despair, which now inhabited his heart. Cold fear, bitter shame, and nauseating worry made his body tremble like a tiny leaf in the fuming hurricane. He didn’t notice the door open and close when a dark figure came in his room and sat down next to him. He didn’t notice the mattress sink under the bodyweight of the man next to him, even if the man didn’t even weigh much. What he did notice was the man’s warm and comforting arm around his shoulders and the light caress of his fingers.

Harry wasn’t able to speak or move or do anything else, just cry. He sobbed as his godfather hugged him firmly, trying to calm him, however in vain.

“It wasn’t your fault, Harry.”

“It was me, Sirius. It was me.” Harry groan between sobs, his head resting on Sirius’ lap.

“Are you capable of animagic?”

“No.”

“Are you capable of controlling people or animals from far distances?”

“No.”

“Do you actually believe that Voldemort could come any near Hogwarts without Dumbledore or the other professors knowing about it, bring you out of the castle without anyone noticing, and then return you, once again, without anyone noticing it?”

“No…”

“Then, please Harry, tell me, how the hell could this be your fault?”

“I don’t know, it’s just…”

“Harry, you saved Arthur’s life.”

“I know. But still… I still… Sirius, I still feel the blood in my mouth. Or I think I feel it. I brushed my teeth at least three times, and I can still taste it. How do you explain that?”

“Oh Harry… Remember when, last year during the summer, you had a dream about Voldemort?”

“How could I forget it?” Harry groaned painfully.

“This was just the same. Only way more intense. I don’t know how to explain it, as we are not yet sure what is exactly happening between you and Voldemort. But we- Dumbledore, me, and everyone else- are sure of one thing. You were not the one who attacked Arthur; it was Voldemort. Most probably, he possessed Nagini’s body, or he controlled her somehow, and you only saw what happened through Voldemort’s eyes. About the connection you and he have, I know nothing for sure yet, and I don’t want to make conclusions. Maybe Dumbledore knows exactly what’s going on, but he hasn’t told me yet. So we have to wait. But you did not attack Arthur, you saved his life.”

Tears tickled down Harry’s face as he looked at his godfather’s eyes. He felt warmness spread in his chest, as he listened to him. Courage flooded into his soul, which gave him just enough strength to deal with everything that had happened during the night.

“Thank you, Sirius.”

“That’s what godfathers are for, Harry.” He smiled faintly. “Get some rest now, try to sleep. I know you don’t want to, but you need it. You look almost as terrible as me, boy.” Sirius said grinning and that finally broke the last layers of ice on Harry’s heart. He smiled back.

“I’d never look that terrible.” Harry laughed too.

“Hey, shut it!” Sirius slapped him gently on the head. “Among some people, I’m considered as a very handsome man, just for your information.” Sirius told him, straightening up. “But this handsome man here needs to go now. Snape is here and I want to know what’s going on with Voldemort.”

Harry’s heart skipped a beat as he heard the name. “Snape’s here? When did he arrive?” Harry asked, trying to remain calm.

“Just now. He had to finish his morning lessons before he could come. We don’t want that frog to suspect anything. Look Harry, I was serious, have some rest. I’ll tell Ron and Hermione to come up later, okay?”

“Yeah, sure.” Harry nodded as Sirius stood up, however he didn’t need his friends right now. He wanted Severus more than anything but he knew they couldn’t be together in Grimmauld Place. He wanted the man to hold him until he could swiftly fall into a dreamless sleep and finally have some rest without the terrifying images of the gigantic snake and all the carmine red blood of Arthur Weasley.

He lied down on his back and watched his godfather leave the room. The door closed with an almost silent click and, as if it were a magic sound, Harry fell asleep.

 

o.O.o

 

It was way past two o’clock when Severus walked out from the kitchen, done with his report. Finally, he could do what he really came here for. As he stepped into the dimly lit hallway and turned towards the stairs, he saw Granger and the Weasley girl sitting on the stairs. Well, Granger was sitting on the stairs, Miss Weasley was rather sleeping, her head in Granger’s lap, Hermione caressing her long, flaming red hair. That hair reminded him of someone, someone, who was once very important to him.

He walked towards them, and Hermione noticed him. She raised a finger in front of her mouth, signing silently to remain quiet. “She finally fell asleep.” She whispered, stroking Ginny gently.

Severus nodded and he tried to move as soundlessly as possible.

“Where is his room?” It wasn’t needed to ask whose, they both knew who Severus wanted to see.

“Second floor, third door to the left.” Smiled Hermione so gently, it made Severus respond with a small smile in the corner of his mouth.

“And Mr. Weasley…?”           

“He’s in Fred and George’s room. He won't go in Harry’s room, I told him not to.” Hermione whispered.

Severus nodded as he went by the two girls. When he was right next to Hermione, he said, almost inaudibly, “Clever girl.” He could swear he heard a little laugh coming from Granger.

Without a knock, he stepped into the dark room. He didn’t need to turn on any lights, he instantly saw the bulge which could have been only Harry, lying on one of the beds, his back facing the door, breathing smoothly. Half of him didn’t want to wake the boy, he knew Harry needed sleep now, but his other half wanted to hold him and kiss him and make sure everything was alright. He knew, he shouldn’t be this worried, he was told Harry felt better now but still, he needed to hear that from Harry himself, not from Black or Lupin.

He walked closer to the bed not making any noise at all. Therefore, he was surprised to hear Harry taking a deep breath as if just waking up. Did he hear him? Did he wake up the boy despite of all his efforts?

“Severus…?” He heard his name as Harry sat up suddenly, turning towards him, his eyes glimmering in the dark.

“If it wasn’t me, you would be in a big trouble now. Why does Harry Potter call his so hated professor by his given name? You shouldn’t be so reckless Harry…”

“I wasn’t reckless, I knew it was you.” Harry whispered with confidence in his voice, reaching towards his lover.

Severus walked to the bed and, holding Harry’s warm hand, he sat down. He pulled the hand to his mouth and gave a tiny, soft kiss over the velvet skin.

“Did I wake you?” He asked gently.

“Well… yes.” Harry smiled. “But it’s not a problem. I… wanted to meet with you. I… needed to see you. I hoped you would come in, after you were finished with your report.” Harry answered; his blushing remained unnoticed in the darkness.

“Harry…” Severus said in a low voice, sliding his hand over Harry’s face, stroking him gently. “I didn’t come here to London to give a report, I came to see you. I had to know if you were alright and I had to see it myself. The report was just… an alibi… an excuse.” He whispered, still stroking the boy.

Harry’s hand went over Severus’ as he slowly bent forward and kissed the man on his lips. Just lightly, their skin was barely touching, as if Harry was testing that Severus was real, not just a fiction of his agitated imagination. Their lips touched, and the hand on his face was suddenly pressed firmer onto his neck as it slid to his nape and pulled him closer to Severus.

Severus edged closer to the Gryffindor, his other hand went around Harry’s waist, as the boy climbed over him. Meanwhile the kiss remained calm, tender like wing flaps of a butterfly.

Harry breathed deeply as he buried his face into the curve of Severus’ neck, feeling the other body’s heat warming him up. Severus’ hand was in his hair now, stroking him gently once again.

“I am aware that this might be the most stupid and unnecessary question, however I ought to ask it: how are you feeling?” Severus spoke quietly in the dark. He felt Harry tense in his arms, and afraid that the boy would pull away, he tightened his hug. “You need to talk to someone about this, Harry, let me be the one.” Then he added even quieter, “Please.”

Harry sighed heavily. He wanted to talk to Severus, he wanted to tell him everything, but he didn’t know how. How could he describe something so unimaginable, especially when he didn’t even know precisely what had happened? They laid there in the old room; several seconds went by but Severus didn’t urge him. He waited patiently, and Harry really appreciated that.

“I know, it wasn’t me.” He started voice shaking, close to losing it and start crying again. “I do know that. Sirius explained to me that it couldn’t be me. But still, every time I close my eyes, I see Mr. Weasley lying on the floor, covered in blood. He was so good to me, Severus. His whole family, they accepted me, loved me, like no one else before. And in that dream, I saw him, almost dead, and I was the one who attacked him. Yes, yes I know…” Harry went on fast, not letting Severus interrupt him, now that the words that haunted him the whole day, flooded out of him. “It wasn’t actually me, but when I saw it, it felt like it was me. It felt like I was the one, who sunk his teeth, fangs, into Mr. Weasley, betraying the man who loved me almost as his own son.”

“Harry…” Severus tried to speak, however he didn’t know what to say.

“No.” Harry cut in. “Please let me say everything, I don’t know if I’ll dare talk about this ever again.”

Severus nodded wordlessly, his hand caressing Harry’s hair automatically now.

“And when I woke up… They didn’t believe me at first. I shouted, cried but they didn’t listen. They said it was a dream, just a nightmare, but I knew it wasn’t. And Dumbledore, that bastard, I know he knows something, but he won't tell me and won’t even look at me anymore, like I am nobady, nothing of importance. I thought… I thought, he liked me, I thought we had something… special… But I guess I was wrong.”

Harry felt that Severus wanted to speak again, but he didn’t care. He went on because he decided that now was the time, when he would tell everything to this man. Every feeling that lurked in his heart, every thought that appeared in his mind.

“And when we arrived here, everyone was so… weird… They kept this… distance from me, as if being afraid that I would attack them too, or get another vision or something. It was terrible, Severus, I felt like an outsider, like I didn’t even have the right to sit at the same table as the Weasleys. I felt dirty because I could still taste the blood of Ron’s dad in my mouth. I brushed my teeth three times but the taste just did not disappear, and I got sick of that. I got sick of the deadly silence and the desperate waiting for some news and I wasn’t able to think of anything else, just to find out how I did that, because back then I was sure it was me who attacked Mr. Weasley. I needed to know how, so I could prevent it from happening again. Can you imagine it, Severus? Sitting around a table with almost everyone you love and being terrified of the thought that a second later you might just turn into a snake and bite them to death? I was horrified, scared and confused and…” Harry stopped for a moment and Severus realized that Harry’s tone changed a bit. He listened even more than before. “… all I wanted to do was to hug you. To be near you. I needed your calming presence, your dark, soothing voice to tell me everything is going to be fine. I needed you more than anything. There were my best friends, my godfather, but they weren’t able to give me the same comfort as you do. And then I realized something… Just there, sitting in that dim kitchen, drinking butterbeer silently, my heart full of worry about Mr. Weasley;” Harry raised his head and looked into Severus’ darkly glimmering, endless eyes. “I realized I love you.”

Severus’ breathing hitched; his heart missed a beat or two as he heard those five words.

 “I love you more than anyone in my life, however we have only been in this relationship for a few weeks. But during that time, you were the one who always listened to me when no one else did or mocked me when I wanted to spend the night with you instead of learning, or when Umbridge did something disgustingly unfair- you were there, complaining about how much I whine about her, like a kid.” Harry laughed slightly. “But you never sent me out of your room, moreover, I had to beg you to let me go in the morning because I had classes to attend. You were always there for me.”

Severus, still speechless, brushed his fingers through Harry’s ink black hair, and then pulled him down for a slow, tender kiss.

“This morning, while sitting around that table,” Harry went on, “until the time Mrs. Weasley arrived, telling us that Mr. Weasley was fine, that thick darkness surrounded us all, it sunk deep into us and we felt like we would never smile again. My constant worry for Mr. Weasley, the terrifying thoughts involving Voldemort, almost devastated my mind and soul, driving me insane, but one thing kept me from losing my grip on reality: my love for you. As a bright light, it led me out from the darkness, Severus.”

Suddenly Harry slipped over next to Severus, and brought one of the man’s hands over his stomach. Severus leaned on one of his elbows as he turned towards the boy. Boy? These were the words of a man, not a boy. Harry had proved several times, that he was way more mature than any other man his age was and worth hundreds of them too.

Severus closed his eyes, then opened them slowly again. He knew what Harry wanted to hear but he wasn’t a man of words, not like the boy. He knew what he felt, right from the beginning, but he never knew how to tell that to Harry. He looked at the man next to him and tried to squeeze every inch of affection he felt into that one look.

“I want to feel that bright light again.” Harry whispered, almost inaudibly, guiding their joined hands under his shirt. Severus’ touch burnt him and finally, for the first time during that horrible day, he felt completely alive. “Please Severus…”

Severus knew that his words may betray him, that he wasn’t able to express himself with words, because no words could describe the feelings he had for Harry. But maybe his body, maybe his hands and his mouth, his fingers and his tongue, maybe they would be able to tell Harry how much Severus loved him.

He shifted over Harry; his warm hand skimmed his stomach and chest, while his lips hovered millimetres over Harry’s lips.

“I would give you whatever you want. Whenever you want it.” Severus whispered into Harry’s ear, his hot, wet breath made Harry’s whole body shiver in anticipation.

The older man kissed his way slowly on Harry’s neck, downwards, right over his drumming pulse. He could count the rapid heartbeats of the boy. He felt the beats with his tongue, while he manoeuvred his long fingers on the young man’s naked skin.

For Merlin’s beard, what the hell was he doing? Was this really the right course of action? Wouldn’t it be better to say no to Harry and just hold the boy until he feels completely all right again? As his thumb flicked over Harry’s erected nipple, the always careful part of his mind wondered if he should do this right now and right here, in the middle of the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix, for a second. They never had sex anywhere else but his own room, back at Hogwarts or sometimes in an empty corridor, but then they had been sure no one was around. This relationship was a risky thing to handle and it could mean the end for the both of them if they are caught one day. But not now, right? Not here, right? Only the members of the Order were here. Black would most probably kill him if he were to see what he was doing with his godson, but Harry would be safe and sound, no matter who would see them here, The Dark Lord wouldn’t know about them. Right?

He bit into Harry’s neck, right at the spot, he knew was Harry’s favourite. His reward was a harsh moan from the young man.

Until this point, Harry remained still as if letting Severus decide what to do or not to do. Harry knew the risks as well, he wasn’t stupid. He knew they could be caught during their intercourse and he also knew in that case Severus would be killed, probably by all the adults in the Order. But he did need this. He did need Severus, inside him, driving in and out. He needed to feel the other’s hot body, slamming against his, pinning him down to the wet bed, as their joined and sweating bodies moved together in synchrony.

His right hand grabbed into Severus’ ass, pulling the man down to feel his hard erection. He heard his professor’s ardent moan and he felt teeth seeking his lips, impatiently. A moment later, when Severus wildly bit into his lower lip and kissed him eagerly, Harry felt his shirt being ripped apart. A palm was sliding on his chest, pressing firmly down, and his back arched into the touch.

“Harry…” Severus groaned, his voice sounded so deep, as if he were purring. “Harry…” It came again and Harry moaned wildly. Only this man was able to make him this keen, just by saying his name aloud.

He felt Severus’ wet lips trailing on his neck and a hand over his groin, quickly pulling down his zipper and pushing down his jeans and boxers. Long fingers went around his half hard erection at the same time as a warm tongue invaded his mouth. He kissed Severus, deeply and affectionately, both hands buried in the long dark hair.

Severus slid his fingers on Harry’s erect cock, and the young man’s legs opened up for him. He felt Harry pushing himself upwards, thrusting into his hand and also suggesting something else. Severus realized Harry didn’t want actual sex with foreplay or any other games they used to play. What the boy needed was release, the feeling of being held and cared for. Alive.

He cast a silent spell and pushed a finger gently into Harry. The boy gasped at the sudden intrusion but not in pain, merely in surprise. Still kissing Harry, he moved his finger in and out a few times before adding one more. The sound of Harry’s deep groans and Severus hard panting filled the silence of the room.

Severus gasped as fingers slithered roughly over his aroused groin, unfolding him.

“Please… Seve….rus…need you…” Harry breathed heavily.

Severus removed his fingers and leaned next to Harry with his left hand, while his right pulled Harry’s leg over his shoulder.

“Look at me, Harry.” He whispered gently, his wet manhood at Harry’s entrance.

Harry opened his eyes and looked into the black eyes. Though his mind was foggy with pleasure and lust, he realized what he was seeing in the dark gaze. This time, his surprised gasp had nothing to do with the large, hard erection sliding slowly into him but with the emotions playing in the obsidian eyes. It was like he was be seeing Severus’ very soul in those eyes and in that soul there was only the bright almost blinding light, of love.

The pleasure was great but he held his eyes open until Severus was fully inside him, then he pulled the man into a fervent kiss.

“I love you, too.” Harry whispered into the kiss right before his eyes opened up again. He saw Severus smiling lightly, just a tiny movement of his swollen lips but he knew it was a smile and he felt warmness spreading in his heart.

Severus started moving, the sheets shifting almost silently beneath them; his slow, deliberate movements made almost no any noise in the dark room. Harry’s body slid with his, the boy’s hands, legs, every part of him trying to get as close to Severus as it was possible. His mouth floating over Harry’s parted lips, breathing in Harry, panting heavily. Sometimes fierce teeth nibbled on lips, sometimes, the soft lips played with each other.

There was no need for words this time, the gasps let the other know when the feeling reached a point, which couldn’t be held for long, and they both moaned wildly as the sweet pleasure overwhelmed their bodies. They gasped for air but the only thing that flooded their joined bodies was the inebriating scent of the other, mixed with the heavy aroma of sex. Gasping, they moved; sweaty, wet skin slid over fiery hot body and fingers tangled together as their ardent cries were muffled by sweet lips.

 

o.O.o

 

Hermione grabbed Ron’s arm.

“What should we do now?” She whispered anxiously, looking around once again.

“I say we should knock.” Ron answered quietly.

“Ron!” Hermione cried desperately. “Don’t you understand? We can’t! They are inside!”

Ron raised an eyebrow. “That’s exactly why we have to knock on that damn door. Let me go, Hermione!”

“But Ron!” The girl whined now, still not letting go of Ron’s arm. “What if they’re… what if…” Hermione couldn’t say the word aloud.

“Hermione, use that clever brain of yours. What do you think is better; if we storm in there, or if Sirius does?”

Hermione gasped loudly. “Oh my god! He would kill Snape. We have to get him out of that room!”

“That’s exactly what I’m talking about,” Groaned Ron impatiently, “So could you let me go now?” But Hermione still didn’t let his arm free.

They had been standing near Harry’s room for almost five minutes now, arguing about whether to knock on that door or not. They had both heard Dumbledore arrive and they also heard the headmaster ask about Snape’s whereabouts so they rushed to Harry’s room, knowing exactly where the Potions Master was, however Hermione wasn’t sure this was the best way to let the man know, he was needed elsewhere.

“Look Hermione,” Ron started, his voice condescending as if he would be talking to a child. “I know, you want the best for them, but if we don’t warn them, and let someone stroll into that room, Snape would most probably die. However, I don’t really care about it and a few weeks ago I would had been even happy about it, now I don’t think Harry would like that. But if we simply knock on the door and yes, I know, we might… disturb them in the middle of something but at least they would know that the whole Order is looking for Snape!”

“But maybe Dumbledore already left, oh Ron, I really don’t want to disturb them now. Harry deserves some calmness now, think about how awful his night had been, too. They both deserve some happiness, actually…”

“Hermione, think of it as a rescue mission! We save Snape’s life. You know if someone finds out about them, Snape will die. That’s not happiness for either of them. Please Hermione, let me go already.” Ron said, stepping towards the door, almost dragging Hermione with him.

“Oh but-”

“Sush!” Ron whispered. “Someone’s coming.” They stood in front of Harry’s door like two statues when they saw Sirius rushing up the stairs. Ron could hear Hermione’s quiet, fearful squeak as the man stopped in front of them.

“Haven’t you seen Harry, by any chance?” He asked with a light smile. Hermione whined again, grasping Ron’s arm even harder.

“I think, he’s up with Buckbeak, but I’m not sure.” Ron answered with a shrug.

“Thanks.” Sirius smiled and a second later, he was going towards the attic.

As soon as Sirius’ back disappeared, Hermione was already knocking on the hard wooden door behind them.

“Harry, open up, it’s us!” She said quietly, urging. To her surprise, the door opened up immediately.

Harry and Severus were standing in the middle of the room, several feet away from each other as if they had been arguing a second ago. Hermione was just about to ask them when both men let out a light gasp and immediately stepped closer.

Hermione couldn’t help but smile but then she remembered why they stormed in the room at the first place.

“Dumbledore is looking for you, Sir!” She said hurrying.

“And Sirius is looking for you, mate. You better hurry, he seemed edgy.” Ron said quickly.

“I wonder what that old fool wants from me this time…” Severus mumbled under his breath, before he kissed Harry goodbye and stormed out of the room.

Harry looked after him with a small smile before he turned towards his friends.

“Thanks for letting us know. I don’t even dare think about what could have happened if Sirius walked in here. Or Dumbledore… My god, they would most probably kill Severus…” Harry sighed.

“See?” Ron poked Hermione gently in the ribs with his elbow. “I told you we had to come in.”

But Hermione wasn’t listening, she was staring at the messed up bed, blushing like hell. Harry and Ron followed her gaze, and when Harry realized what she was thinking of right now, he blushed even redder than Hermione. Ron started laughing.

“Mate, you really are doing it with him!” He laughed even harder. “I mean… I know you said you’re doing it, it’s just… it just hit me now. Like hard. You’re actually having sex with Severus Snape, the greasy git of th-” Ron wasn’t able to finish his sentence as a huge pillow flew into his face firmly.

“Oh you shut up!” Harry yelled, but couldn't help himself, he was grinning. Hell yes, he had sex with Severus. Awesome, maddeningly good sex.

“Ew, gross!” Ron cried up, grimacing, tossing the pillow back to Harry. “This is still warm! Damn, mate!”

Harry, hugging his pillow sat down and laughed even harder at Hermione’s wide-open eyes.

“Harry…” The girl murmured. “You should be more careful. What if someone comes in and sees the two of you?”

“Don’t worry, Hermione we are careful. We have the Invisibility cloak and everything.” Harry said, calming.

“Oh shit, I will never use that thing again!” Ron cried again, covering his eyes. “I’d rather go. I don’t want to know what other stuff I don’t want to touch anymore,” he said, turning around.

“Ron…” Harry shouted after him before he could walk out of the door. “Sorry mate…” He said in a grief voice, and then added with a smirk. “But if I were you, I wouldn’t touch your pillow anymore too.”

“I’m so gonna kill you, Harry! Hear me? I’m gonna kill you!” Ron yelled turning towards Harry. “But before that… I burn my pillow.” He said determined, shaking his head, and walking towards the door again. “I loved that pillow.” He said, shooting one last murdering glace at Harry before disappearing behind the door.

Harry and Hermione laughed but then suddenly Harry turned to the girl and said, “Can we… speak, Hermione?”

She sat next to him and asked gently, “Are you all right, Harry?”

“I am.” Harry said with a small sigh. “It’s just… I said something to him, to Severus I mean, and I don’t know if… So I don’t know if it was the right thing to say…”

“What did you say to him Harry?”

 

o.O.o

 

Remus repressed a yawn as he ambled up the stairs. He felt tired but it wasn’t just because the full moon was close, only three days away, it was also because he still wasn’t able to catch up with his sleep. Last night it was his turn under the invisibility cloak, watching and waiting at the ministry. After he got back from there at dawn, he had to make a report and go back to Grayback, hoping he wouldn’t kill him just out of boredom while he tries to secretly steal information about the Dark Side’s movements.

It was a hell of a week. And now not just Arthur’s incident but also even the threat of the full moon was hovering over him. But something helped him get through the last week, and it will also get him through this week. He smiled at the thought.

Severus showed up in front of him, but where he came from was a mystery to him.

“Severus,” He greeted the man with a smile. “Have you, by any chance, seen Sirius somewhere?”

The man sneered as always when they met. “No, I fortunately did not. He’s most probably grudgingly sitting somewhere, brooding over his ill-fated destiny and miserable inertia,” he groaned.

Slight pain slashed into Remus’ heart because he knew exactly how much Sirius hated staying here in this house when everyone else in the Order was doing his job, doing everything they can to obstruct the Dark Lord. It didn’t matter how many times he told Sirius that this is what he needed to do now, the man was on the edge all the time.

His displeasure must have been seen on his face as suddenly Snape sighed.

“Or maybe he’s just looking for Potter.” Snape said without any edge, simply being informative and Remus didn’t know what caused this sudden change. “Did you drink your potion?” He asked then and Remus was baffled. Usually when Severus asked this from him, someone was always around them, so the question sounded like he tried to remind everyone about his state. However, now just the two of them were present and he sounded like he actually cared.

“Don’t pretend you care.” Lupin said, tilting his head slightly, not sure why Snape’s thoughtfulness made him protective, when usually he just smiled at the man’s sometimes childish attempts to humiliate him in front of the only people he considered his friends.

Severus’ eyebrow rose. “We wouldn’t want an untamed werewolf running among the children, would we now. Especially not at a time, when the great Harry Potter is also among us.”

“You never cared for the children before, Severus, and you especially never cared for Harry. What changed?” Lupin wondered.

“Though I admit I repel that child, I would never wish for him to be bitten by a werewolf. No one deserves such malice from destiny.”

Remus had to smile at that. He always imagined Severus thought he deserved what he got but it looked like the man could surprise him even after decades of acquaintance.

“I did drink my potion; thank you for preparing it.”

“I will deliver you the next portion tomorrow.” Snape said as he turned away to leave.

“Severus…” Lupin started and he didn’t understand what made him ask his next question. “Do you have any plans for the holidays?”

The dark man turned around and Remus noticed a bright mischievous glint in his black eyes. “Plenty.” He answered with a slight smile at the corner of mouth.

Remus stared, motionless, towards the man getting further away from him. He couldn’t shake away the feeling that the sparkle in the black eyes was full of hidden innuendoes involving something really sinful. Would it be possible that Severus Snape had a lover? Well, he was still young, but considering his position as a spy for both sides of the war, it seemed like a reckless action. Severus would never risk such a thing, neither his lover nor his job as a spy, however if that person were someone who already had knowledge about his situation, that would make things a bit easier, though not at all unproblematic.

He shook his head as he turned around. Nah, it couldn’t be. Snape was a loner; arrogant, mean, unpleasant and sometimes cruel, even towards people who did not deserve such treatment. But what if someone got beneath those icy layers?

Remus never imagined he himself could one day become the object of someone’s desires and yet here he was, looking for his own lover right now. He was the living example of a lone wolf, and even he found love; why should it be different with Snape? He was aware about the man’s dark past, though he did not know every detail, which would explain his detachment towards people, and giving his state as a spy, he must have a hard time connecting to anyone, may it be a romantic or simply friendly relationship.

He almost ran after the man to ask if he indeed had someone, when he realized it wasn’t even his business. Most probably that would be Snape’s exact answer as well, so he just turned around and walked up to the attic, hoping he would find Sirius with Buckbeak.

“Where the bloody hell is that boy?!” A way too familiar voice shouted from in front of him before he could climb the last few stairs. A moment later, the owner of the rough voice showed up as well.

“Remus, you sneaky dog, what are you doing up here?” Sirius smirked, teasing.

“Looking for you, actually.” Lupin answered, stepping closer to the man.

“And what exactly did you want to do with me once you found me?” Sirius placed a gentle kiss on his lips. His whisper caressed Remus’ ears like silk.

“Dumbledore is here, he wants to talk to you about Harry.” He pulled away, because he knew exactly how fast Sirius’ attempts to seduce him worked on him. Very fast.

Hands went around his hips as wet, warm lips caressed the line of his neck.

“Dumbledore can wait a bit longer.” An eager, husky voice whispered next to his ear.

Very fast indeed.

“Dumbledore is waiting for you, Sirius. Get your pretty ass down there.” He said, turning around.

A hand grabbed his shoulder and stopped him, though didn’t turn him around. He took a deep breath, ready for a rant about them not being hormone struck teenagers anymore, when suddenly thanks to his werewolf senses he smelled something.

Remus groaned fervently as he realized how excited Sirius was; the musky, spicy sent of sex flooded out from Sirius’ pores and Lupin inhaled them with the oxygen. It was incredible how a hateful ability such as turning into a vicious werewolf monthly could also give him such unique abilities as his sense of smell. Which now helped him realize how turned on his lover was, how hard his erection was, throbbing already beneath those clothes.

“I want to fuck you, Remus.” Came an ardent voice from right behind him. “I know you know it. You always seem to know it, when I want you.” He felt Sirius smile at his neck and that made him shiver.

“Well, you won’t.” He smirked, trying to get away but naturally, his attempt was in vain. Sirius’ strong arms held him like a cage, a cage from he did not truly want to get free. The man’s long fingers slid under his robes and Remus realized he was lost right at that point.

Waves of lust invaded his senses, making him dizzy with every breath he took. The spicy aroma of his lover’s skin and the musky scent of his sweat mixed in his nose and he could almost taste the heavy, piquant flavour of his pre-come, which he sensed was already weeping from his erection.

“No, I indeed won’t.” Sirius said, and Remus was surprised to hear his own disappointed whimper. “Because when I fuck you again, I will take my time. I won't let someone like Dumbledore rush me, I want to immerse in the sensation of your body below mine, Remus.” The man purred, his hands running all over his bare skin.

“The full moon…” Remus started because he had to remind himself that just days before his turn, he was much more impetuous, and he would hate himself if he caused any injury to Sirius during their intimate activities.

“The full moon is three days away, my dear friend, and that means right now, your skin is hypersensitive, your senses are on the edge, and you feel like you’re constantly keen for something but you don’t exactly understand what.” His lover murmured into his ear, while his warm hand traced his stomach, edging downwards. “You think I didn’t notice? You think I didn’t know what you want during these days? Oh dear Remus, I know exactly what you’re burning for…” Sirius groaned and his hand suddenly disappeared from Remus’ body. “Me…” He went on, his palm sliding roughly over Lupin’s erect manhood, his lips curling into a smug smile as his lover’s head lolled back over his shoulder.

“That’s it, old boy, enjoy my touch.” He said in a passionate, soft voice, fingers skimming over the hardened cock covered by layers of clothing.

Remus let out muffled cries as he let his hips buckle forward into the pleasing caress. Over and over an eager hand stroked his erection without any gentleness, giving him exactly what he needed. Sirius was right, as always, this was indeed what he needed but not just during these days close to his change, but every time he was close to the man. His special scent always made him hard and the fact that he could always tell when the man felt the same way gave some special features to their relationship.

He thrust back and forward between welcoming, stroking fingers and a stinging hardness at his backside.

“You feel me, right Remus?” Black groaned, holding him to his erection, making circling movements with his hips. “I will be in you, not now, but soon and you can then set free you wild side. You know how much I love your raw bites, don’t you?” the man chuckled in his ear. Lupin moaned reassuringly, before Sirius turned them towards the wall and Remus had to stud their thrusting bodies, leaning with both of his hands on the wall.

“Ah… Sirius…” He moaned fervently as the man ran warm fingers over his bare chest again, pinching on his erect nipples as he reached it.

“Old friend, you seem agitated…” Sirius laughed gleefully, with a hand unbuttoning Lupin’s trousers. Black freed his erection and he shuddered as its surface came into contact with the cold air. But then suddenly, long fingers were wrapped around it like a warm and eager blanketing caressing, shifting smoothly and languidly.

Remus growled like an animal, lustfully and wild, his body tensed with the need to come, lips parted as he breathed in the heated scents of his lover and himself, apart and together.

Long curled hair tickled his face as Sirius was lashing his tongue over his bristly chin, biting it at places while at other sucking on his soft flesh. He turned his head in great need for a kiss, deep and lustful, and his lips were welcomed immediately. He wanted to turn his whole body towards Sirius but the man wouldn’t let him yet, he grasped his hips firmly, while thrusting forward with almost brutal force, so raw, Remus had to stiffen his hands on the wall even more.

“Need you…” Lupin moaned into the kiss and his response was a wild moan. He was turned around then and, with one sudden move, crashed against the wall, followed by another body, hot and eager.

He ripped apart Sirius’ robe and the shirt beneath it vehemently, looking like his wolfish side had peeked to the surface and the man before him suddenly stopped. Sirius looked down on his torn clothes then a smug smirk brightened up his worn features.

“Yesss…” He moaned as his lips returned over Remus’ with his tongue driving into the other’s mouth, teeth biting wildly and hands grabbing into Lupin’s backside.

“Yes…” He hissed again as their cocks touched, one still covered with clothes but Lupin was determined to change that. His fingers messed with the buttons for a while and then finally Sirius’ erection was in his hand, hard and silky, wet with pre come.

Sirius groaned, eagerly thrusting into Remus’ hand, his thick, hot shaft pulsing beneath the man’s touch as he stroked him with tight, swift movements. But it wasn’t enough. It was never enough for him.

Lupin captured the luscious lips with fierce teeth, nibbling on the soft flesh as his palm curved around both their erections, joining in Sirius’ forceful twists.

Both their fingers worked on their hardness, rubbing, clenching hard, their hips smashing and thrusting.

“I want to be inside you so badly…” Sirius murmured in Remus’ mouth and in response, he just moaned vehemently, eagerly; ready to fulfil Black’s wish. But not now, not here, they were needed elsewhere, they had barely enough time for real sex now. However, tonight, when everyone would be asleep he would sneak in Black’s room and he would crawl on top of the man. He would kiss Sirius, long and thorough, his hands would slide into the smooth black curls, and when they would be both hard enough, he would ride him, wildly, madly, keenly until he would come on Black’s stomach while the man would come inside him.

“Tonight…” Lupin moaned as an answer, nearly blind from pleasure. His cock was weeping, the pre-come streaming on their joined hands. “Oh, Sirius…” He whimpered, hands tangling in the black mane as he felt the other man grasp his arse.

The sensation became overwhelming when Sirius slid his fingers between his buttocks, grabbing roughly, and he came shuddering into the palm clutching tightly the tip of his erection. Through his foggy mind, he heard Sirius bark his name as he came with a muffled cry and a wild tremble.

Panting, they rested against each other, lazy fingers caressing soft flesh, wet lips sliding on sweat covered skin.

“Mmmm…” Sirius purred against his ears and he shivered again. “That was good.”

Remus leaned away. “Are you suggesting that last night wasn’t good?” He said with pretended irritation. “Or this morning?” He went on with a smug smile.

“It’s always good. Or, well, awesome.” Sirius laughed. He drove a hand through Lupin’s hair, and placed a soft kiss on the scarred lips.

“We should really go. Dumbledore is waiting.” Remus reminded the man.

“He could wait a bit more.” Sirius whispered languidly, wrapping his fingers suggestively around Remus’ now soft manhood.

“Sirius. Go. Now.” He ordered.

“Oh, but Remus…” The man whined, lips hovering over his.

“Don’t ‘oh but Remus’ me,” Lupin laughed. “Dumbledore is waiting, and I believe you still don’t know where your godson is. We don’t have time for this now.”

“Now? But tonight we will?”

Remus had to laugh again.

“Tonight, we definitely will.”

“Good.” Sirius nodded, stepping back. “Now what do we do about my torn clothes? One might think I ran into a werewolf, seeing this.” He motioned at his ripped shirt and robe.

Remus looked at the man. His eyes shifted from the torn clothes to the thin, lean body beneath it. His gaze caressing the marks the past had left behind. He reached out, letting his fingertips dance over the ribs poking through the soft skin. His hand shifted and he sensed the fast drumming of a warm, loving heart.

His look shifted to Sirius’ eyes and met with a dark, lustful gaze. He had to remind himself once again, that neither the time, nor the place was suitable for them to continue their foreplay.

His hand however, shifted upwards, curling around the slim neck; his thumb under Black’s chin, pushing it back, his tongue wetting his lips unconsciously.

“Tonight…” He murmured again, husky, then he cleared his throat and stepped back. He grabbed his wand and pointed at the clothes. Sirius followed his movements with a smirk across his handsome face. He knew exactly how his naked body affected Lupin.

“Reparo,” Remus casted with a sheepish grin.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry sat on his bed, motionless. After he had seenwith Severus, life just seemed easier to deal with. His confession surprised him, he hadn’t meant to sa anything about his feelings to Severus yet, but the man’s reaction was even more unexpected.

Severus loved him back, and that thought sent butterflies flying wildly in his stomach. It wasn’t needed to be said, Severus’ gaze showed everything. This, their relationship, the secret meetings at midnight weren’t just passing fun for his professor and finally he knew it for certain. He was loved, deeply and madly.

He grinned into his pillow, which still smelled like Severus.

Hermione agreed with him about this. The girl seemed really happy when he told her what had happened, she squealed lightly and then grinned, blushing. She told him exactly what he thought about Severus.

Hermione said he should be neither angry nor sad about this. Snape was a man with a dark and sad past, which was obvious just by looking at him. It wasn’t so surprising that it was hard for him to admit he loved someone or to talk about feelings at all.

Harry had to admit, he was relieved when he found out that Hermione thought the same about this. He wasn’t too experienced in the field of love, though as far as Harry knew neither was Hermione, the girl at least had loving parents and even Krum- whatever happened between the two of them. It surely wasn’t the same feeling as the kind of love Harry felt, but it was still better than all his previous relationships added together.

After Severus left Harry’s room, he was uncertain about how he should feel. When Severus was lying over him, he was sure what he saw in those black eyes was deep love, deep like the bottom of the ocean, but when the man wasn’t near him, his doubts stared filling his mind, and he started complicating things.

Severus was older than him, much older. He was selfish when he thought it didn’t matter but then, he wasn’t the one who would be blamed with child abuse, no matter if it was consensual or not.

Sirius popped into his mind, his beloved godfather, who hated his lover to the bottom of his heart. And the feeling was mutual. What would happen to Severus if his godfather were to find out about their secret relationship? What would the others do to him? Severus took a great responsibility with this relationship, greater than Harry had ever admitted to himself.

Not to mention Voldemort. Shivers ran over his body and ice-cold sweat streamed down his back just from the thought of it.

As he sat on his bed, he grasped his pillow tighter. Even through all these difficulties, he knew he loved the man more than anything or anyone in his life. And he was loved in return. He didn't need to be told that in words, touches and glances were more than enough. But would it be enough when they had to prove their love to someone else?

He jerked when someone knocked on his door firmly.

“It’s me, mate.”

He stood up and opened the door quickly.

“What’s up?”

“Uhh… Snape wants to talk to you.” Ron said, running a hand through his red hair.

Why didn’t Severus come up to him if he wanted to talk? Why send Ron? He was about to ask these questions from Ron when the boy went on.

“It’s Hogwarts business Harry, and Sirius doesn’t seem too happy about it.” Ron groaned with a grimace.

“Let’s go.” Harry said, too afraid that their secret somehow found a way out.

As he stormed into the kitchen, he instantly saw Severus and Sirius inches away from each other, their wands in their hands, though not pointing at the other yet. Around them, Mrs. Weasley, George, and Ginny were standing, not knowing what to do. Hermione was at the corner watching, looking worriedly at Harry.

“I don’t believe you.” Sirius snarled.

“And I do not care about your trust issues, Black. Believe me, I would be the merriest man if I did not have to teach that insolent brat but it is Dumbledore’s order. Not my personal wish.” Severus sneered.

“Sirius?” Harry asked, trying to stop the fight.

“Oh, hello Harry. Look… uh… Professor Snape wants to tell you something. But before he opens his gob,” Sirius said, shooting a nasty look at Snape, who was just about to speak up. “you have to know, that you can say no. You can say you are not willing to do it and then you don’t have to.”

Harry noticed Severus raised an eyebrow at a comment but it vanished before Sirius could notice as well.

“Okay then, go on Snape.” Black waved with an arm and fell into a chair.

“Potter,” Severus started with an official voice. “Listen to me carefully because I’m not going to tell you this more than once. The Headmaster believes that there is a unique connection between you and the Dark Lord, hence your vision about Arthur Weasley. When the Dark Lord’s mind is weaker, for instance when he is in Nagini’s body, you can share his thoughts without him knowing about it.”

“That could be used as a weapon against Him, right?” Harry asked because he couldn’t hold back his excitement. He was terrified he sometimes shared minds with Voldemort but if He didn’t know about it, maybe finally they had a weapon against Him.

“Don’t interrupt me, Potter.” Snape hissed.

“Snivellus, mind you manners.” Sirius mocked the man.

Before Snape could react somehow, Harry spoke up again.

“I’m sorry, Professor Snape, please go on.”

His professor’s gaze snapped back at him and he could swear he saw a light smile at the corner of Severus’ lips.

“We do not intend to use this against Him; Dumbledore already has a spy. We expect it to come to an end. You cannot maintain this connection with the Dark Lord, Potter, it is dangerous for… everyone.”

Harry nodded, though he didn’t really understand why they couldn’t turn this to their benefit. Maybe Dumbledore was afraid that his mind was too weak?

As always, Severus seemed to read in his mind.

“If the Dark Lord becomes aware of this link, He will surely use it against you. He might torture you with your own imagination, with your own memories, making you see things that do not exist and misinterpret your reality. He always loved to torture and drive His victims mad before giving them the pleasure of finally dying.” Snape added darkly.

Lupin stepped into the kitchen and sat down next to Sirius. The two men shared a glance, warm and loving and for a minute Harry thought, maybe there was more between them than friendship. But then he returned his gaze quickly to Severus as the man went on. “There is a method, and in case that you are able to learn it, you will acquire the ability to defend your mind from the Dark Lord. It is called Occlumency, the magic of shielding one’s mind.”

Sirius stirred in his seat but Harry didn’t turn towards him. He was curious how this would end.

“After the holidays, I will attempt to teach you this technique so you can defend your mind from insults like your last vision, Potter. You will tell everyone that you come to me for extra Potions lessons. And knowing your marks in the subject, no one will question the necessity of it.” Snape let a teasing grin appear on his face.

However, all Harry could think of was, extra time with Snape. He looked at the man disbelieving, trying really hard not to let his lips curve into a happy smile. Did they really just get permission to spend more time with each other, in Snape’s room, without it being suspicious to anyone?

He really shouldn’t be this happy.

“Extra lessons?” He cried, trying to press as much disappointment as he could into his voice.

Sirius huffed as if knowing this would be Harry’s reaction.

“I don’t want you spending more time with Harry than needed.” Sirius said. “Why can’t Dumbledore teach him?”

“You are like an egocentric child, Black.” Snape sighed dramatically. “ ‘I don’t want this’, ‘I don’t want that’, well imagine this: no one cares. Believe me, I have better things to do than spend my time teaching something to the glorious Boy Who Lived, knowing exactly how this impish child will fail at one more important thing. The Headmaster is a busy man, which is why he passed this magnificent task to me. Or maybe he knows a lost cause when he sees one.”

“Don’t you dare talk about Harry like that!” Sirius exclaimed, jumping to his feet.

“Calm down Sirius,” Lupin stood up too, trying to make the other sit back. Sirius responded to the slight nudging at his shoulder and crashed on to his chair again.

“Tell him what you will do to him. Tell him, how exactly you want to teach him.” Sirius ordered, resting his elbows on the table.

Severus shot him a dark glance before he stepped closer to Harry. Snape looked him dead in the eyes as he went on. Thank Merlin his professor was now standing with his back to Sirius, so that his godfather couldn’t see his face, because he was smirking as he spoke.

“I am going to use Legilimency. I am going to penetrate your mind, and I am going to see your hidden thoughts, your buried feelings, your secret desires, your lost memories, your sweet dreams, everything. I am going to see into you and you will have to close me out using Occlumency.” Severus said, his voice dark and smooth and no one in the room except Harry realised it was filled with promises, dark and thrilling, exciting and lustful.

Harry felt himself harden at the very thought that Severus would see all the dreams he had about the man sucking him, fucking him way before their first midnight meeting; that the man would see or maybe even re-live in a way, how it felt when Severus took Harry’s virginity or how it felt to be crashed against that bookshelf long time ago.

And he could see in those deep, dark eyes that Severus was thinking about the exact same thing.

“Oh Merlin!” Lupin cried before Harry could say even a word.

Everyone looked at Lupin, who stared at Snape with wild open eyes. Then, with a swift motion, he moved, grabbed Snape by his arm and dragged him out of the room up on the stairs. Severus was caught by surprise and that was the only reason, why he didn’t protest against the forceful dragging.

He was stashed in a room, followed by an angrily growling man.

“Are you insane?!” Lupin barked madly.

“What are you talking about, Lupin?” Severus asked, trying to remain calm, though his heart was beating ferociously.

“You are aroused, Severus.” It wasn’t a question.

“What on earth are you trying to-” Severus started but Remus cut in, grabbing his shirt and tossing him back at the wall once again.

“Don’t even try to deny it, I can smell it on you.” Lupin snarled.

“What?!”

“Werewolf senses, Severus, should I remind you?” Remus said angrily, tapping the side of his nose with his forefinger. “The smell of arousal just poured out of you as you were standing before the boy.”

“Are you trying to imply that I am interested in the Potter boy in a sexual manner, Lupin?” Severus said, pretending revulsion even of the thought of that kind of feeling.

“I’m not implying anything Severus. It is clear as the Sun.”

“The full moon must have driven you mad.” Snape sneered, shaking his head and trying push away the man, while acting coolly no matter how serious the situation was.

But he was pushed back again. “You can lie to me now, Severus, but I can smell the bitter aroma of your anxiety, it mixes with the smell of your fear, it’s like cold, mouldy air. Disgusting.”

“Of course I feel anxiety when a werewolf, close to his change, corners me! However, it has nothing to do with your ridiculous accusations. Let me go, Lupin or I will hex you.”

“Oh Severus, I know exactly what I sensed then and I know what I still sense.” Lupin said, his voice low, threatening growls coming from his throat. “You are still aroused because of the boy, you know it, and I know it too.”

“You are mad, Lupin.”

“Yes, I am. I’m fuming in anger. How could you?”

“How could I what? Get aroused by a boy? Don’t be absurd, Lupin.”

“Absurd, am I?” Lupin asked, laughing out like a madman. “Then why, I ask, are you still hard?” Remus almost spit the last word as he grabbed Severus’ groin, feeling it as aroused as he thought by the smell around the man.

Severus was fast, grabbing Lupin’s hand and tearing it away from his body meanwhile he grasped his wand and pressed it against the man’s throat.

“Do that again and I will kill you.” He snarled viciously, his grip on Lupin’s wrist tightening.

“No point in denying it, Snape. I know.” Lupin said, stepping back one step.

“You know nothing.”

“No, you don’t know anything about what I would do to protect that child from your sickness. He is only fifteen years old, you bastard. If you touch him with even a finger-” Lupin said menacing, leaning forward, not caring about the wand being pressed into his skin even more.

“I have no intension of touching that kid. He does not know about this matter and I am determined to make it stay like this. So leave him out of this.” Snape murmured with a low voice.

Lupin hissed angrily, enraged by the memory of Snape’s mischievously glimmering eyes when he asked about his Christmas plans.

Suddenly the door flied open and Harry stormed into the room.

“Don’t hurt him!” He shouted and to Lupin’s surprise, pushed him further away from Severus, though Snape was the one, still holding his wand and pointing it at Lupin. Harry jumped in front of his professor, opening his arms, protecting the man with his own body.

“Oh Harry…” Snape moaned.

“Severus, are you alright?” Harry asked, turning halfway back, his voice filled with concern.

“I had the situation under control until you breached in a moment ago.” Severus smiled at the boy.

“Oh, you did?” Harry asked, genuine surprise in his voice.

“Yes, I was about to convince your dear friend and protector that you know nothing about my interest in you. But then you stormed in. Lower your hand Harry, no one will kill me.” Snape answered calmly and Harry sheepishly obeyed.

“Oh yes, I will!” Lupin shouted, leaping towards Snape with actual murderous intentions.

Harry raised his hands again and stepped back a bit, so that he could be closer to Severus. “NO! No, you won’t!”

“But Harry, he’s-” Lupin tried to speak but in vain.

“It was me. I started it, okay. I… I seduced him. If you want to blame someone, blame me, but don’t hurt him.”

Well that wasn’t really true, Severus thought to himself but didn’t say a word aloud.

“Harry, you’re fifteen, you don’t know what you want. He on the other hand-”

“I knew exactly what I wanted and you don’t have the right to take him away from me. Just please, don’t tell Sirius about this.”

“What shouldn’t he tell me?” Sirius spoke from the door, Ron and Hermione stood panting behind him.

“Oh shit.” Harry groaned.

“Sorry mate, we couldn’t hold him back.” Ron murmured behind Black, who then shot an angry look at him.

“So, what shouldn’t Remus tell me? And what’s happening here?” Sirius asked, looking around the room.

For a second, Harry almost smiled because he realized how absurd this scene must look; he protecting Snape, who was pointing a wand at Lupin, who was standing stressed and tensed, with a murderous glance in his eyes.

“Sirius, please don’t get angry.” Harry started. His fingers unconsciously tangled around Severus’ hand when he said his next words, “I am in love with Severus.”

There was a moment of complete silence in the room. No one moved or uttered a syllable. Everyone looked at Sirius who was staring at Harry, inaudible and motionless, while Harry was waiting for his response, his reaction as if that would determine his course of action.

Then Sirius started shouting, his voice loud and inarticulate. He reminded Harry of a furious, rabid dog. His forefinger pointed at Severus as he yelled, trying to get closer to the man but Lupin held him back.

Harry knew his fingers tightened around Severus’ wrist as he watched his godfather say despicable words of his lover.

“ENOUGH!” He bellowed and Sirius quieted, feeling taken aback. “You don’t have the right to speak like that about him! You don’t know him!”

“You don’t know him either, Harry. You just think you know him.” Lupin spoke up too, his arm still around Sirius, in case the man wanted to attack Snape again.

“That is not true.” Harry said calmly, warmness in his eyes and voice as he turned half way towards Severus. “I know a side of him you could never imagine. He’s nice and gentle.” Severus felt himself blush slightly from the words. He didn’t need his childhood enemies to know about his deepest feelings; it was more than enough that Granger and Weasley knew about them.

Sirius laughed out loudly and sarcastically, which felt like a cut in Severus’ heart. Was he considered to be so incapable of any kind of affection that he was laughed at when it was even mentioned?

 “No, listen!” Harry cried desperately and stepped towards his godfather. He felt childish. His arguments were efficient in convincing Ron and Hermione about his feelings because they weren’t against any of this. However, he needed more to convince Sirius. “I love just being with him. He understands me more than any of you do. He’s not just a good friend but also a caring lover and-”

Suddenly Sirius looked at Snape, his eyes narrowed in anger and Harry realized what he had said.

“You are fucking my godson?!” Sirius shouted, fuming, and the blunt wording astonished Harry.

“And your godson is enjoying it immensely.” Severus answered with bored voice, as if he were tired of this conversation. Dead silence fell around them once again. Harry had to admit this response did not really help their situation, however these kinds of remarks from Snape always entertained him somewhere deep.

“You bastard!” Sirius bellowed and with a fast leap, he was standing in front of Severus, his hand clenched in a fist. Harry and Lupin were too slow; they couldn’t pull him back before he smashed his fist into Severus’ face. The man hissed painfully and staggered back a few steps. Snape’s fingers curled too, his fingernails cutting into the soft flesh of his palm.

“I’m not going to fight with you because Harry is here, but don’t you think for a second that I will forget this.” He murmured with his deep voice that carried danger and threat.

Lupin grabbed Sirius and dragged him back a few meters away from Severus, whom was now tended by the boy; soft caring words were exchanged between the lovers and it reminded Remus of the nights when Sirius was with him, trying to soothe the wolf in him.

“Is this some kind of sick revenge on me for what had happened between us?” Sirius jeered, tensing against Lupin’s hold, ready to hit the man again if the restraining arms slackened even for a second.

“Oh, how juvenile and egoistic you are, Black. This may come to you as a surprise but my life isn’t about revenging anything you did to me in the past. And this especially has nothing to do with you.” Severus sneered, wiping a small trail of blood from his cheekbone.

Sirius then desperately turned toward his godson. “Harry he’s a Death Eater, a spy! You can’t trust him!”

Harry was now so angry that he almost hit his own godfather. How dare Sirius accuse Snape with this? When Severus was so afraid at the time Dobby showed up in his room, pale white just from the thought that Voldemort would find out their secret. He opened his mouth to shout at Sirius but someone spoke up before he could.

“And I am werewolf, and you were said to be a murderer. Sirius, Dumbledore says he trusts him, Harry says he trust him, don’t you think he knows his lover better than you do?” Remus said quietly. Harry was surprised by the sudden change in Lupin’s opinion of this relationship but the look on Sirius’ face told him, his godfather was even more astonished.

“But…” Sirius started but Remus stopped him by placing his forefinger softly over Sirius’ lips.

“If Harry told you, you couldn’t be with me because I’m dangerous and I’m a werewolf, would you stop loving me? No, you wouldn’t. Because you love me. You love me for who I am, despite of what I am. Maybe you don’t understand what Harry sees in him, but you don’t even have to. Don’t forget, Severus is the one who helps me month after month to not turn into a vicious monster. And that is enough for me to trust him; even if it is foolishness. You can’t make them not love each other and your anger will only make them cling on to the other even more. Sirius, you have to understand, if you continue your hatred, you will lose Harry.”

“But Remus, don’t you see? Harry is still a minor, he doesn’t know…”

“He knows perfectly.” Remus smiled. “The same way you knew perfectly what, or rather whom, you wanted, when you were fifteen.”

“That was different. He’s not like you.” Sirius said pointing at Severus.

“Oh for Merlin’s sake, Black, listen to your lover; at least he makes some sense.” Severus nodded slightly towards Lupin, as if saying ‘thank you’ and then stepped in front of Black. “This is a consensual relationship, not any of your businesses, only Harry’s and mine. In case Harry gives any sign that he wishes to terminate our relationship, I will do so- other than that, I will fight for it with everything I have no matter against whom I have to fight. I would die for Harry. Now, leave this matter alone.” With this, he turned around and stretched his hand towards Harry.

Speechless, Harry slid his fingers in the inviting palm and walked out of the room behind Severus. They walked silently towards Harry’s and Ron’s room and when they were finally inside they sat on the bed.

Harry suddenly didn’t know what to say to Severus. His last words felt like a confession to Harry, much more than he ever expected from the man. He knew how hard it was for him to speak of his feelings, especially to Sirius, someone he had hated since his childhood.

He looked at Severus who was staring at the dark, dirty wooden parquet. He moved his hand and clasped Severus’ jaw, turning the handsome face towards him. He kissed the crimson bruise over the cheekbones, lightly, so that it wouldn’t hurt for Severus though the man still winced at the contact.

“At least we’re over this, right?” Harry mumbled, smiling.

“Over?” Severus laughed out. “Shall I remind you that Dumbledore doesn’t know about this yet? Convincing your godfather not to kill me was child’s play compared to what Dumbledore will do to me.” He said and fell back on the bed, pulling Harry with him.

They snuggled into a comfortable position, their faces turned towards the other, their bodies close.

“I’m sorry to bring you into such situation…” Harry sighed gloomy.

“Don’t be.” Severus smiled at him, reassuring as he folded their fingers together.

“Oh, your hands are cold. It’s a bit cold in here, isn’t it.” Harry said clumsily, starting to caress the long fingers with his thumb.

“It is.” Severus answered silently, his eyes buried in Harry’s however, he seemed to be miles away. “Thank you for warming me up.”

“But your hand is still cold...”

“Not outside. Inside. I feel my heart warm again. After fifteen years, I feel myself warm. I can almost sense the ice cold water drops finally streaming down from my heart as the feelings I feel for you take the place of sorrow and guilt.” Severus’ fingers caressed Harry’s cheek as he spoke. “You change me, Harry. I can already feel that you make me a better person, the person I always wanted to become but never dared or had the chance to. And I love you for this. No matter what demolishing difficulties the future will make us face, no matter how the Darkness will try to conquer our souls, attempt to destroy the Light we carry, Harry James Potter, I will love you, now and forever, as long as I breathe and even after I leave this shallow place called Earth. Never forget this, Harry: I will love you and you only. My heart lies within your hands, so please take good care of it. It is yours now. My heart, my soul and my body. It is all yours now.” Severus whispered in the darkness of the night and Harry felt his tears burn his skin as they trickled down his face.

Chapter Text

Harry sat on his bed pulling on his socks before going down for breakfast. Suddenly he heard a light knock on the window, he turned towards it just to see his beloved bird, knocking with her beak asking for a way in. Harry got down from the bed quickly and rushed to the window to let her in.

The box on Hedwig’s leg was so small that Harry did not even realize the bird was carrying something until Hedwig held up her leg to him and squeaked. Harry unfolded the silvery string that held the little present to her and put it on his bed. He wanted to give something edible to Hedwig as a reward before letting her back out into the cold February morning.

He found some owl titbit in his drawer and gave them to Hedwig, who pecked his finger kindly in return. Harry stroked her a few times, as he walked back to the open window. He looked out and admired the still snowy grounds, his hand automatically caressing the beautiful owl.

Hedwig squealed again then leaped out of the window, spreading her wings widely and flew away towards the Forest, probably for a hunt before she retired for the day.

Harry closed the window and went back to his bed, shivering from the cold air. He sat down and took the mysterious box in his hands. It was wrapped in fine dark green paper with the same silvery string that attached it to Hedwig’s leg. He turned the small present around a few times but did not come across any sign that would suggest who had sent it to him, though he had a guess.

Carefully he opened the string and the green wrapping, and slid out whatever was in the paper. A black box, half the size of his palm, fell into his lap. He held it up cautiously, looking for any clue about the sender of the small package. He still did not find anything so he opened it up.

A surprised gasp escaped his mouth as he first laid eyes upon the object in the box. He knew exactly what it was, though he had never seen anything like it before. There was a folded letter beneath it, he took it out and read it.

Wear this every time you come to me, and you will be rewarded. Fail to do so, and your punishment will be severe, said the little piece of paper. Harry recognized the small letters right away, though after he saw the present, the identity of the sender was not really a question anymore.

He smiled as he turned it in his hands, his cock stirring in his pants as he thought about what might happen tomorrow night when he could visit Severus again.

A loud knock came from the door and he hid the present with the box under his blanket.

“Yeah?” He shouted towards the door, taking his sock in his hands, pulling it on his foot. He wondered whom it might be, his roommates never knocked.

“Morning Harry,” Hermione stepped into the room, smiling at him. “Cho asked me to give you this.” She said with an arched eyebrow and held out another letter towards him.

He took it and opened it up immediately and read through it.

“She wants to meet me.” He summed it up, looking surprised at Hermione. “What does she want?”

“She didn’t say. She just asked me to give this to you when we meet.”

“Maybe it’s something about the DA…” Harry wondered aloud.

“Maybe,” Hermione said, though she did not mean it, she knew Cho had fancied Harry for some time. “Will you tell about this to Snape?”

“What? No,“ Harry said surprised. “I mean, I don’t know, should I?”

“Where will you two meet?” She asked as she sat down next to Harry on the bed.

“At the Quidditch field,” Harry checked in the letter.

“What if he sees the two of you? Don’t you think, he will…”

“Hermione, it’s not like I’m going there to secretly snog with her, we’re just going to talk, more likely.”

“Okay, I just think it would be better to…”

“To what? Go to him and tell him, hey Severus, I’m meeting with a girl tonight but don’t worry, I’m not going to have sex with her? Hermione, this would make me suspicious…”

“All right,” Hermione laughed. “But you should know she likes you.” She said hesitantly.

“I know.” Harry answered with a sigh. When he noticed Hermione’s questioning look he went on. “She kissed me a few months ago.”

“What?” The girl cried out. “When?”

“After the last DA meeting before Christmas.” Harry said sheepishly.

“But Harry…” Hermione started counting in her head. “Oh god Harry, by that time you and Snape were already involved.”

“I know.” Harry said and forgoing the girl’s next question, he went on, “And I didn’t tell him.”

“Harry!” Hermione cried up, looking at him as McGonagall does before giving him extra homework for not doing better during lessons.

“I know!” Harry repeated desperately. “But you know him, he would kill Cho for that, ruin her. She didn’t do anything, we talked about Cedric, she started crying, and then she suddenly kissed me. I told her, it’s not going to work, she apologized and ran off. That was all and it wasn’t even a proper kiss.”

“Harry, you’re in big trouble.” Hermione said and Harry knew she was right.

“He won’t know about it, and it didn’t mean anything. Why make him upset, right?”

“You’re not serious, are you? He will know, and when he finds out, you will be in big trouble.”

“But I didn’t do anything, I didn’t even know what was happening, and when I realized it, I pushed her away. And it’s not like Cho would go to him and brag about kissing Harry Potter…”

“He’s your… boyfriend or whatever so I can’t tell you what to do, but if I were you, I’d-“

Harry had to laugh at the phrasing the girl used. Severus Snape, twice Harry’s age, and his teacher; it did not seem quite right to call him ‘boyfriend’.

“Hermione, I appreciate the concern, but it’s all right.”

“Well, let’s hope. I don’t want to have more homework because you two have a quarrel and he suddenly gets mad at every living soul.” She said, raising an eyebrow.

“He would do that, wouldn’t he?” Harry laughed and that made her smile too.

“What’s this?” She asked a few seconds later, noticing the green wrapping paper at Harry’s leg.

“Oh… that’s…” Harry started hesitantly.

“It’s from him, right?” Hermione smiled gently.

“Yes.” Harry breathed, fishing out the little black box from under his blanket. “He just sent me this.”

“Is it for Valentine’s day?” Hermione asked.

“Oh right, that’s tomorrow. I don’t know, probably.” Harry said and felt silly that he didn’t think about that before. He just realized Severus timed their next Occlumency lesson on Valentine’s Day and it made his heart flutter.

“What’s in it?” Hermione asked curious.

Harry grinned as he answered. “Are you sure you want to know?”

The girl hesitated before nodding slightly and Harry lifted the upper part of the box.

“Is that…” Hermione stuttered with wide eyes, blushing madly. “Harry is that a… ring?”

Harry’s smirk widened. “A cock ring, to be precise.”

 

o.O.o

 

Harry walked on the grounds after his horrible DADA lesson. Words could not describe how much he hated Umbridge and the lessons she was teaching. Well, if you could call reading from an old book teaching.

Darkness fell soon as they were still in winter however, it was not as bad now that spring was on the verge. He was kicking the snow as he walked to the meeting place with Cho. His shoes got wet after a few steps in the white snow, even the edge of his jeans was darker from the wetness but he did not mind.

He thought about the cock ring that lay hidden in his drawer at the moment. He could not wait to put it on and visit Severus the next day. He wondered what the man would do with him, what kind of kinky play was in his mind this time.

He felt a bit ashamed that their lessons, the real reason Harry was visiting him, was not going as planned. Occlumency was tiresome and hard, especially with Severus doing it. Harry knew he should have been closing out the man from his mind and he even tried it, doing his best.

During their first lesson, Harry let Severs in on purpose, recalled their heated encounters, secret meetings and stolen kisses and made sure Severus sees them too the way Harry had lived them. Nevertheless, things did not happen as he hoped for. Though Severus got aroused, he was also mad with Harry for not trying harder. He made Harry promise that he would do his best, try everything he can to improve in Occlumency and manage to end his dreams about Voldemort.

Harry tried and tried day after day to close out the visions of Voldemort but a part of him was so curious about that door he always dreamt of, and about what Voldemort would do next that he was afraid this was the real reason why he always failed in Occlumency not his lack of focus as Severus thought.

“Harry?” A timid voice spoke in front of him and only then did he realize, he was already walking on the Quidditch grounds. He looked around and the sudden pain that slashed in his heart made his face frown with hatred.

“You miss it badly, don’t you?” Cho asked as she walked up to him.

“Yeah…” Harry mumbled, looking towards the rings one more time. He shook himself and looked at the girl, who once again had red eyes, most probably from crying. “So what did you want to talk about?”

“Will you go to Hogsmeade tomorrow?” The girl asked him shyly.

“Yeah, I will.”

“Could we… could we meet there?”

Harry was surprised by the question as he thought he made it clear for Cho that he was not interested in her at all.

“I don’t… think that’s a good idea.” Harry said, shaking his head.

“I’m sorry for… for what I did to you before the winter break. It wasn’t fair.” Cho said, blushing. “I mean, kissing you. I didn’t mean to… I don’t know what hit me…”

Nargles… Harry thought to himself, smiling inside.

“Look it’s okay, let’s just forget it.” Harry smiled at the girl.

“Harry… the reason I wanted to meet you… It’s not because of us…” Cho said, looking away from the boy. Harry felt relieved for a second. He looked at Cho reassuring her to go on, he was curious now. “I want to hear… no I need to hear what happened to him…”

Cedric. She wanted to know more of Cedric’s death. Sudden cold gripped Harry’s heart as he thought of the boy.

“You know what happened.” He said coldly, though he did not intend it to sound so harsh.

“I know only the rumours.” Cho said, already in tears.

“Oh god, sorry, I didn’t mean it.” Harry groaned, already knowing he would meet Cho tomorrow.

“I know it’s hard for you, and I hate to ask you this…” Cho sobbed. “But I think that’s the only way for me to close it…”

“All right,” Harry said, patting Cho on the shoulder. If he can do something to help at least one person to have a good night sleep without Cedric’s death hovering in their nightmares, he would do it.

“You don’t have to…” Cho whimpered, her voice cracked from crying but full of gratefulness.

“It’s all right, we’ll talk tomorrow.” Harry said determined.

Suddenly Cho vehemently started crying again and threw herself in Harry’s arm, leaning her head on the boy’s shoulder.

“Thank you, thank you so much Harry!” She murmured between sobs.

Harry, not knowing, what he should do, patted the girl on the back again and let her cry.

Neither of them noticed the dark figure standing at the edge of the field, looking right at them with his fists clenched tightly.

 

o.O.o

 

“Did you really have a date with Cho Chang?” Ginny asked him on Monday morning while they were having breakfast.

“Wha-?! Where the hell did you get that?” Harry snorted, shoving his mug so hard on the table, half of his coffee gushed out.

“Roger told me he saw the two of you on Saturday at Madam Puddifoot's Tea Shop,” Ginny looked at him surprised. “From your reaction I guess it’s not true.”

“We were there but it wasn’t a date, we just had coffee!” Harry whined desperately. If Severus heard this rumour, he would be in big trouble that was sure.

“Just had coffee? At Madam Puddifoot's? On Valentine’s Day?” Ginny asked with a raised eyebrow, smiling while shoving eggs into her mouth. “That sounds like a date to me.”

“But it wasn’t, all right? And I would appreciate if you didn’t mention this to anyone. Anyone.” Harry gave her a serious look. The girl did not seem to believe him.

“I don’t know why you are so upset, Cho is a nice girl.” Ginny said casually. “Okay, she’s the chaser of-“

“Ginny, I’m upset because it is not true!” Harry cut in her words. “She was asking me about Cedric, okay. It wasn’t a date.” He whispered.

Ginny seemed taken aback. “Oh…” She said quietly.

“Yes…” Harry murmured as he stood up quickly. He had to find Severus. “Shit,” he groaned, drinking the remnants of his coffee in one go, before hurrying out of the Great Hall.

This weekend was terrible and it seemed to him that the unfortunate events were not even close to coming to an end.

On Friday night after he got back from his meeting with Cho, a big brown owl brought him a letter. Upon opening the little parchment, he realized it was from Severus and it said that their Occlumency lesson for next day was cancelled. He felt really disappointed.

The next day went on with the same bitter mood. His meeting with Cho could not be described as happy either, as the girl was almost crying from the moment they sat down in the teashop and started talking about Cedric. Everyone around them eyed Harry for making the girl cry and it did not help that Davis and his blonde girlfriend were passionately snogging right next to them. Talking about Cedric’s death was not easy for Harry but he really wanted to help Cho; the girl looked miserable with her eyes always sore from crying.

The interview with Rita Skeeter cheered him up a bit, it gave him an opportunity to tell everyone what had happened, to open their eyes, however the things he had to tell her made his head dizzy and his heart ache with bitter pain.

He waited during the whole weekend for an owl to bring him a piece of parchment with Severus’ unique handwriting but no bird arrived, not even Hedwig. He was sad that they could not meet on Valentine’s Day, as he looked forward to wear the ring Severus gave him.

But, at least today he could be sure they would meet. He had double Potions. He smirked inside as he thought about how he would wear the cock ring during Potions. He was sure Severs would notice his aroused condition since nothing eluded the man’s attention, especially when it came to Harry.

He still had a few minutes before History of Magic; he decided to roam the corridors in hope of bumping accidently into Snape though he didn’t know if the man had any lessons or would be in his quarters. Hogwarts was huge so his chances were tiny, specifically that he was not anywhere near the dungeons Severus usually dwelled. Therefore, he was even more surprised when looking up he saw a tall dark man coming towards him.

He looked around but they were alone on the corridor, so he smiled at Severus. To his surprise the man did not even look at him, he was resolutely staring somewhere behind Harry. When they came closer, Harry greeted the man.

“Good Morning, Professor Snape.” He said and stopped in front of the man so that even if Severus was deep in thought he would still have to notice him.

The dark glance turned towards him and an evil sneer appeared on Severus’ face.

“Get out of my way, Potter.” Severus groaned, pushing him slightly sideways as he walked past Harry.

He knows, Harry thought to himself while he listened to the retreating footsteps echoing in the empty corridor. He was sure Severus heard the rumours about him and Cho and that was why he was acting this way. It must have been the reason. It could not be just a coincidence.

Harry knew he should run after Severus but he felt his legs were made out of marble. He could not move as Hermione’s words echoed in his mind. He was in a big trouble, indeed.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry missed his History of Magic class; he was wandering on the endless corridors not paying attention where his feet took him. His Potions lesson was just about to start but he was not sure yet if he would go in or not. Though he was sure Severus would notice his absence immediately and more likely give him more homework as a result or even detention.

He feared he had made a big mistake with meeting Cho without telling Severus. If Severus heard about them from somewhere, he would draw the wrong conclusion. Harry should have told him, explain to him the situation before meeting with Cho. He felt stupid; it did not occur to him to send a letter to Severus after he cancelled their lesson or even after he opened the little box.

They needed to talk. Maybe after Potions he could explain him what had happened.

He started running towards the classroom, he could already hear the chatter of his classmates when he suddenly bumped into something solid. His bag landed on the ground, all his books splattered in the corridor but he was more concerned about the man he ran into.

“Sorry, Sir.” He said, looking at Severus who was fuming.

“Thirty points from Gryffindor, Potter.” Severus whispered coldly turning around with a swift motion, his cape billowing behind him as he marched towards the classroom.

Harry started packing away his books suspecting that this would be a very long Potions lesson.

When he walked in the classroom, some of the other students were still standing and packing out from their bags.

“Ten points from Gryffindor, Potter. Perhaps next time you could honour us with arriving when the class starts.” Severus sneered when Harry dropped himself on his chair at the table in the back of the classroom. “However, I imagine that would ruin your great entrance.”

Hermione and Ron gave him a worried glance but neither of them dared to speak as long as Snape was still keeping an eye on their friend. Harry did not even look up as he prepared his books for the class.

The rest of Potions went in the same bitter way between Harry and Severus, however it seemed the professor decided on a different approach. He did not speak to Harry, though that did not help the boy’s concentration anyway. Harry still felt helpless with Severus around him, walking but not even looking at him. He would feel better even if the man at least shouted at him or teased him the usual way, but Severus did nothing and this made Harry even more irritated.

Harry worked quietly at his desk not talking to Hermione or Ron. He risked a glanced at Severus, who was sitting at his desk, correcting some papers probably. He watched the man as his long fingers enclosed around the quill, his raven hair concealed his elegant face. Harry could remember the dark eyes glistering with lust however when Severus suddenly looked up and their gaze connected over the student’s head and the mist that flooded from the cauldrons Harry could only see anger in the endless eyes.

He turned away his eyes fast but still he could hear that Severus stood up and came towards him. Anxious of the reprisal those eyes carried, he tried his best not to make a mistake. He heard the footsteps come closer and closer, the swishing noise of Severus’ robe, though was barely audible, seemed unbearably loud as it reminded Harry of the sound their entangled, wet bodies made on the green sheets in Severus’ room.

He gasped for air and his hand, holding the little vial over his cauldron twitched, when images of their first night popped into his head. Pictures about how it felt to be pressed to the cold wall, his legs around Severus’ hips, while the man was grinding to him, long, warm fingers sliding on his erection.

Severus walked past him, but it did not matter, his Draught of Peace already started sizzling, violet sparks erupted from his cauldron. Severus turned around and stepped to him.

“Potter, one mistletoe berry. I said one, not three.” Snape fumed over him. The potion in the meantime started flooding out of the cauldron and Harry was unable to do anything just watch it, knowing precisely that he, once again, failed his Potions lesson.

He grabbed a vial at least to gather some of the potion, so that he could give a sample to Snape, evidence that he did something during the lesson. However, before he could immerse the glass ampoule in the bluish-brownish miasma, Severus grabbed his wrist.

“Don’t touch it, you idiot.” He bellowed at Harry and made the potion disappear with a flick of his wand.

“It seems to me, Potter that another extra Potions lesson would be in place, before you burn your hands to ashes.”

During the rest of the lesson, Harry sat in one place quietly fuming, ashamed of what had just happen. However a plan was already forming in his head. This was a battle and he was not going to lose it. He will clear his name and explain everything to Severus even if that resulted in a month long detention.

 

o.O.o

 

He heard a clock strike six o’clock somewhere far away, the dim chinking echoed among the thick walls. Great, he was late. This detention was not going to start very well. He hurried his steps, almost running towards the well-known room in the dungeons. He was a bit disappointed that the detention would not be in Severus’ own private room, but in the class room. He hated that place; it was so dark and damp, nothing like Severus’ chamber.

His schoolmates rushed past him, some of them carefree because the lessons were over, and some agitated about homework, Quidditch, Umbridge or some other problem that seemed nonsense to Harry now.

No one paid any attention to him, which was a blessing because he was overly aware of his own body at the moment. His bag was slapping against his bum with every step, his mouth was so dry, he could barely swallow, the ring was tight around his rigid cock, his jeans were rubbing against his arousal.

He jumped down from the last two stairs and a moan slipped through his gritted teeth. There was no one around and he was close to the classroom so he leaned against a wall to have a breath. He was sure if he were to continue running around the school like this, he would actually be able to come at some point.

His palm was itching to go down on himself and caress his hard manhood through his denims, but he stopped himself. He suspected Severus wouldn’t be happy to find out that Harry just palmed himself to orgasm few steps away from the classroom.

Harry still wasn’t sure that wearing the cock ring for detention was a good idea. Actually, he started realizing, it might be a bad one. Arriving to Severus in a state like this when the man was clearly in a bad temper might fuel his rage even more. Harry couldn't be sure how this detention would turn out but he was anxious to set things right.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus heard the approaching footsteps and stood up from his chair. A grim smirk showed up on his face, as he took a glance at his clock. Three light knocks came from the other side of the door and he waved his wand to open it.

“You are late.” He said in his strictest voice. The anger he felt for the young man boiled under his skin but he couldn’t help feeling just a bit happy to see him again. That made him even angrier.

“I’m sorry Sir, I w-“

“I do not care about your excuses Potter.” He said raising his voice. Meanwhile, Harry walked in the room and came to his desk. A brow rose high on his face as he watched the younger man standing in front of him slightly hunched, his head down, his fists clenched, knuckles white.

“Look at me, when I’m talking to you, Potter.” Severus hissed and Harry looked up at him.

His cheeks were flustered, but not from the running, lips swollen and bright red, his whole face shining lightly from sweat, pupils dilated and Severus knew very well when Harry usually looked like this. After all he had made him come numerous times, inspecting the young man’s features, trying to engrave it in his memories.

“You...” He snarled with almost disgust in his voice. He was close hexing out Potter from his room, how dare the boy come to him in this aroused state, surely right after his engagements with her. But no, he would make sure to make him suffer for what he did. ‘Oh the nerve in him’, Severus thought angrily, his fists clenching too.

Snape turned around, his robe almost flying around him like a black cloud and sat behind his table. Harry thanked Merlin silently that he had taken off the ring before coming in because his erection was the least of his problems now. He was still hard but if Severus went on with the same manner, an erection wouldn’t be a problem any much longer. Harry knew he had to clear this between them, the sooner the better.

“Your task for tonight is to clean those cauldrons over there.” Severus pointed at the stack of dirty and disgusting bowls at the further corner in the room. When he heard the almost relieved sigh slipping from the young man’s wet lips he let his mouth curve in an evil smirk. “After you are done with them, I have several cases of jars in need of cleaning as well. Should you be finished before ten, I expect you to produce a perfect vial of Draught of Peace until midnight. However, in your case, I believe I should lower my expectations.” Severus sneered.

Harry looked at him defiantly. “I know why you are doing this Severus but pl-”

“I am not your friend, Potter, I am your professor and hence I insist on using my proper title when addressing me.”

“Please li-“ Harry started but Severus didn’t let him finish.

“I think,” he almost shouted “you have some tasks to finish.” He pointed at the cauldrons standing up with a swift motion.

“Listen to me!” Harry bellowed and grabbed Severus’ arm but the man shook him off and trashed him against the wall holding his shirt.

“I do not listen to liars.” Snape whispered but to Harry it felt like shouting.

“I’m not a liar.”

“How dare you stand in front of me in a state like this and say you’re not lying? How dare you say that looking into my eyes?! I know all about your little secret Potter.” Severus almost spat the last world, feeling his anger burn intensely.

“It’s not like that, she-“

“Don’t you dare talk to me about her!” Severus yelled letting go of Harry and turning around, walking away before he did something regrettable.

“SHE WANTED TO HEAR ABOUT CEDRIC!” Harry shouted desperately walking after Severus.

“That is a very convenient lie.”

“It’s the truth, please believe me.”

“After what you did?” Snape turned around with a sudden move. “Never.” He hissed.

They stared at each other for a few seconds that seemed like a millennia to Harry. This was bad, he screwed it up all and he didn’t know what to say now. He touched Severus gently on his arm but the man shook off the contact and hissed like an angry python. “Don't you dare touch me.”

“She wanted to talk about Cedric, he was her boyfriend.” Harry said slowly.

“Lies.”

“The absolute truth.” Harry went on quietly. “I love you Severus and I would never lie to you.”

“Don't you.... Just... don't.....” Severus shook his head disappointed.

“She was suffering and I wanted to help her.”

“Well I guess fucking her was a good way the make her forget about her dead boyfriend.”

“We had tea.” Harry said angry now, fed up that Severus wasn’t able to hear him out. “But I guess it’s almost the same for you.”

“I saw you two at the quidditch field after darkness, are you trying to convince me you went there to have a cuppa? I am not an idiot, Potter.”

“Hermione brought me a letter from her, she asked to meet at the pitch, I didn’t know what she wanted so I went there. When she came, she asked me if I would be going to Hogsmeade next day and I said yes. She asked if we could talk there somewhere. I told her that I’m sorry but I’m not interested in her and then she started crying and said she just wanted to talk about Cedric because she needed to hear more about his death because she was suffering every night. She was crying, Severus. So I said yes. And that’s the story, no fucking or anything like that happened.”

Severus smiled but Harry knew that smile very well, it wasn’t the warm loving one he received during their private meetings, it was the grin he held when giving detention to people.

“You missed the part when you two kissed, I was there Potter, and I saw you.”

“We didn’t kiss.” Harry said and thought about that evening. “She hugged me. That was all. Severus, she was crying. You might be resistant to girls who cry, but I am not. She cried, she hugged me, so I hugged her back and patted her shoulder then she thanked me and she went away.” Harry reached towards Severus but he backed away from the touch.

Severus’ eyes narrowed, he couldn't believe Harry anymore, he was like a wounded animal, not able to trust anyone. He was used to betrayal but Harry was the only one he trusted and his unfaithfulness hurt him beyond anything, he was like an open untended wound, bleeding and infected.

“The next day we found a place we could be alone, so no one would overhear what I told her about Cedric and we talked a bit. I told her, how he died and she started crying again. She always cries. Then I had to go to meet Ron and Hermione in the Three Broomsticks. And that was all.” Harry finished and let the corner of his lips twitch into reassuring smile.

“If that was all, as you just said,” Severus started with a sneer, “why didn’t you say anything to me, why hide it?”

“Because I'm an idiot and I knew you would react like this.” Harry cried. “I didn’t know what Cho wanted at first and when I got back from the pitch the owl you sent me was already waiting for me. We didn’t see each other until today.”

“You're tales were always convincing, but don't expect me to believe your illusions. Get out of here, your detention is over. I cannot bear to see you right now.” Severus turned around again and walked to the door, opening it. He wasn’t looking at Harry but it was obvious he was waiting for the young man to leave.

“No.” Harry said simply. “I won't go away until you hear me out.”

“I have no intention of listening to you anymore. Go before I shove you out.”

“No.” Harry said and backed to the furthest point from the door. “You have to listen, you have to believe me.” He begged close to crying. He didn’t want to lose Severus over something this stupid and meaningless.

“Nothing that you say can make me believe you, not now.” Severus whispered sadly his hand still on the door.

“What if I can show you? Would you believe me then?” Harry asked stepping closer.

Severus looked at him.

“Use Legilimency on me, Severus, please.”

The door closed slowly as Severus turned towards him.

“You won't block me out.” It wasn’t a question and Harry knew it.

“I won't block you out.”

“You won't close any doors.” Severus came closer to him.

“I won't close any door.”

“You won't hide anything.” Snape reached for his wand.

“I won't hide anything.”

“You will open your mind to me.”

“I will open my mind to you.” Harry said clearly and Severus whispered the charm.

The next moment Harry felt Severus’ mind press against his and memories started flowing, flashing in both of their minds. He felt the tender connection and was relieved because he knew it meant Severus still cared for him, which was a good sign.

Severus saw Harry walk in the snow thinking fondly about the little gift Severus sent him and he couldn't help it that made the Professor smile lightly. Then came the girl and his black eyes narrowed. But Harry told the truth, she wanted to hear about Cedric, and she cried, throwing herself into Harry’s arm. He felt the young man’s confusion about what to do, and then he hugged her back and patted her shoulders, just as Harry had told.

‘Can it be true? ‘He asked himself, letting the rush of relief run though his mind and heart.

Another memory, they were at the teashop, Harry disgusted by the Valentine’s Day decoration, fishing paper hearts out his coffee. Cho mentioned Cedric again and Harry talked and she started crying again. The boy next to them broke his enthusiastic kiss and gave a judging glance to Harry, next to several other people in the tedious little tea house. The girl nodded to him as if saying thank you and run out, crying loudly, but still trying to hide her tears. Harry spent the rest of the day in the Three Broomsticks with his friends and that dim-witted ex-reporter from the Daily Prophet.

Severus was about to break the connection when another door showed up and opened slowly to him. He knew Harry wanted to show him something else as well so he went in and found himself in an unknown room somewhere around Christmas time judging by the decoration. Chang was there too, crying again. Harry was comforting her with words but then she looked up at the ceiling, whispered “Mistletoe” and kissed him. Furious rage took over Severus, knowing they were already together at Christmas, he wanted to break the connection but then the wide-eyed Harry in the memory pushed the girl away. “I’m sorry Cho, I can't.” He said to the girl, stepping away from her. “I belong with someone else.” The girl cried up and ran away and the connection between Harry and Severus broke.

“I wanted you to see that too.”Harry said quietly. “You were right, I should have told you about that kiss and about the meeting but I didn’t want you to torment her because of it. She’s been through enough already.”

Severus thought about what he’d seen and what to say now. He had to admit he would have been a real bastard with Chang if he knew she kissed his Harry, the young man was right about that. He looked at the ground not able to say anything when Harry clutched his arm.

“Severus, please forgive me.”

“No... Harry...” He murmured looking into the emerald eyes. “It’s me, who needs forgiveness.” Severus whispered placing a hand on Harry’s face, caressing him with his thumb. “Could you... would you excuse the behaviour of an old man who does not know how to trust anymore. Who is so scarred and insecure that he would push away the only good thing in his life? I was tricked so many times Harry, trust is a luxury I cannot allow to myself. I placed my faith and hopes into the hands of the wrong people, who then betrayed me and these events left their mark on me.” Harry’s gaze shifted on Severus’ left arm. “No, not just the Dark Mark,” Severus shook his head when he noticed the move. “These are invisible scars not on my body but on my soul. And because of this I lost faith. I lost my faith in people but I was fine until you came. However now I have to rediscover how to trust again.”

Harry took Severus’ hand in his own and kissed it. “It’s all right.” He said and moved closer to the man. “We’re good now, right?” He asked still a bit uncertain. “This was a misunderstanding and we learned our lesson, right?” He looked up the older man hopefully.

“Yes,” Severus smiled gently and pulled Harry closer by his waist. “Thank you.” He whispered.

Harry drove his arms around the man and clutched him tightly. “I won't ever keep anything from you again, I promise.” He whispered into the other’s neck.

“I will learn to trust you, Harry.” Severus said and held the young man in an equally forceful embrace. They stayed that way for a couple of minutes, enjoying the calmness and fondness that run through them like electricity or heat.

“I missed you.” Harry confessed, fingers tangling into the soft dark hair. “I was so scared I fucked this up. Us, I mean. This means too much to me, Severus, I wouldn’t survive without you.” Harry said eyes closed.

“You do not even have to, Harry. I am here, right here, and I am not going anywhere. I will fight for us until the very end. You are the best thing in my life, Harry, and I was a moron to be willing to let go of you so easily.” Severus nuzzled into Harry’s neck taking a deep breath. “And I missed you too, oh Merlin, how much I missed you.”

Still not letting go of the other, Severus pressed his forehead to Harry’s before looking into the shining green eyes. “I love you, Harry.”

Harry smiled slightly, relieved and happy. He pressed a small kiss to Severus’ lips before he said, “I love you too, Severus” then he kissed him again, still softly, he gave almost feather light kisses on the thin lips.

Minutes passed but they kept kissing, standing in the middle of the room in the cold dungeons until suddenly Severus leaned back and looked at Harry.

“I would like to take you on a date, if you accept me.” He said with a warm smile.

“What?” Harry said after a few seconds of silence.

“I would like to take you on a proper date. Dinner, for instance.” Severus repeated patiently.

“Severus, you don't have to.” Harry smiled. “I was the stupid one, don't think for a second that you have to fix something here.”

“I know, however, we’ve been together for months now, and I have never taken you out somewhere. Now call me old fashioned but as far as I know courting starts with a rendezvous. What we have not done yet, at least not the proper way.”

“In my opinion, having breakfast in your room is quite the date. And we’ve done that several times. Or lunch, or dinner. What I mean is, I don’t think there is a proper way of a date in our case, we can’t just have dinner at Madam Rosmerta’s.” Harry said raising a brow.

“Well obviously not at there or anywhere near Hogwarts. I would even consider something out of the country maybe.” Severus smiled teasingly.

“You are serious about this?” Harry asked surprised.

“I am always serious. What would you say about Friday night? After dinner we would have the whole weekend to ourselves; there is something I already wanted to show you anyway.”

“What?” Harry asked excited.

“You will see soon.” Severus said simply. “So what do you say, Harry? Would you go on a date with me on this Friday night?”

Harry hesitated for a second, not because he was thinking about declining the offer but because he was wondering what Severus’ game was.

“Absolutely.” He answered then with a wide grin. The reply earned another kiss, which however turned out to be quite alight this time.

“Did you like my gift?” Severus whispered into Harry’s ear after he broke the kiss. Harry’s slight moan was the best answer he could get. “Will you wear it next time you visit me?”

“I was wearing it when I came here. I took it off at front of the door, because I wasn’t sure things would go okay with us and I just...”

“Ah... So that’s why you were aroused.” Severus murmured, his warm breath caressing Harry’s ear.

“Yes,” the young man blushed deeply.

“How did you like it?” The professor smirked against the shell of his ear.

“It was amazing,” Harry groaned earnestly. “I almost came just by running here but it didn’t let me. It was frustrating, but at the same time good. Really good.” He whined as Severus was rubbing his lips on his neck now.

“Good,” Severus smiled evilly as he looked at Harry. “Now go and do your homework I do not want any excuses as for why I cannot have you for the whole weekend.”

“Can I do my homework here?” Harry asked.

“But of course you can. Just close the door when you’re finished, I’ll be in my room.” Severus smirked teasing walking towards the door.

“Severus!” Harry groaned.

“Or you can join me in my private quarters.” Snape laughed. ”But be quiet, Minerva is patrolling today.”

“Promise” Harry said, sneaking after Severus.

 

o.O.o

 

Friday came faster than Harry could hope for. It was almost seven o’clock and he was walking towards Severus’ chamber, all dressed up, feeling way more excited than he should given they spent plenty of time together already, just because this date was out of the castle that shouldn’t mean it would be any different than their previously shared meals. Still, with drumming heart, he clutched his Invisibility cloak even tighter as he knocked on the door.

No one was on the corridor beside him, but even if there were, his cloak hid him from the unwanted attention. They both agreed it would be best if Harry kept wearing the cloak as long as they were on Hogwarts ground, just in case Umbridge had her sentries on guard somewhere. The door opened up and Harry slipped in.

Severus was standing behind the door. When Harry looked over him, his mouth literally fell open and a slight hiss escaped his lips.

“You look amazing,” He moaned, his eyes still roaming over the man before him.

Severus wasn’t wearing all black and that was a surprise for Harry as he’d never seen the man in any other colour than that. Though he had black fabric pants on that suited him perfectly, the silk shirt that strained on the lean body was silver and it looked great on the Potions Master. The top two black buttons were undone revealing the delicious, pale skin and his raven hair was slightly curly this time and framed his long face, making Severus look like an aristocrat. Harry never thought Severus could dress like a muggle and still look this incredibly hot.

He dropped the cloak and leaned into Severus for a kiss before they headed out. He pressed his lips softly against the other’s and was welcomed with warm lips and a wet tongue sliding against his lower lip. Severus put a hand around his waist and pulled him closer while he slid his tongue inside Harry’s mouth. The younger wizard groaned into the kiss when Severus sucked on his tongue and then they broke apart breathless.

“You look gorgeous.” Severus whispered looking over Harry once again. “I highly hope you do not feel too attached to that green shirt because I will most likely tear that from you at some point this evening.” He said conversationally. Harry felt his black pants tighten immensely from those words.

“I was thinking about the same.” He said lustfully. “Can't we just skip right to dessert,” the young man asked hopefully, grabbing onto his professors tight ass.

“Impossible brat.” Severus smiled giving one more kiss to Harry. “Shall we?” He asked opening the door.

Harry was about to put on the Invisibility cloak once again but Severus stopped him. “Wait,” he said, waving with his wand. Suddenly a green and silver scarf turned up from somewhere. Severus took it and put it gently around Harry. It was soft and smelled like Severus and Harry felt much warmer suddenly but it had nothing to do with the scarf.

Severus tiled his head as he considered the scarf. He must have decided that it was warm enough because he reached for his long black coat and put it on as well. Harry moaned lightly by from the sight. Naturally, it did not evade Severus’ attention who gave Harry a teasing smirk then walked out the door.

“Come,” He said seeing that the corridor was still empty. Harry donned his cloak and went after the Potions Professor.

They walked silently next to each other but after a while, Harry had to fall behind the man because several people showed up around them. Harry noticed the astonished looks the students and even some of the teachers gave the man who paced with his chin high not giving a damn about the others until a strict voice did not call out to him.

“Severus!”

Severus slowed down his steps and then stopped. He couldn't pretend he didn’t hear Minerva.

“Severus, wherever are you going at this hour?” She asked as he stepped closer, hushing the children away. She took in Severus’ appearance and her eyes widened. “You look quite dashing tonight. Are you... going on a date, Severus Snape?” She asked incredulously and Severus heard Harry’s chuckle behind him.

He gave the woman a bright smile, as he answered, “That, my dearest Minerva, is none of your bloody business.” He smiled charmingly, nodded and walked past the petrified lady.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus apparated them to a little and dark alley.

“Where are we?” Harry asked as he took off the cloak and jammed it in his jacket pocket. “Are we still in England?”

“Yes,” Severus answered as they strolled out from the passage. Muggles walked on the street not even blinking at them. “We are at a place called Ottery St Mary. Have you ever heard of it?” He asked Harry.

“No,” Harry answered.

“It’s a little town not far from Exeter. Its population is about 7000 and as far as I know, not a single wizard has come here in the last five century. Except us, obviously.”

“Oh...” Harry said surprised. “Why?”

Severus stopped and pointed at a small restaurant near them. “That would be the restaurant I had in mind for dinner. We still have plenty of time; would you fancy a walk before eating?”

“Sure,” Harry said.

“That jacket of yours...” Severus started hesitantly. “It seems way too thin and it is cold out here.” Severus said before putting a silent warming charm on Harry. “You mind?”

“No,” Harry smiled. “It’s much better, thanks.”

They started walking again and Severus steered them towards the old church.

“Because of the pixies.” Severus said suddenly and Harry didn’t have a single clue what he was talking about. Severus noticed and smiled gently. “Magical people prefer not to cross the town borders because of the pixies. They can be vicious little creatures when disturbed here by wizards.”

Harry frowned, he knew pixies but he wouldn’t describe them as vicious. “That’s not... common, right? Pixies aren’t that bad.”

“You are right; however this town has history with the pixies, pretty dark history, actually. Once this was said to be pixie land and during this time, several wizards, the muggles and the pixies lived peacefully next to each other, muggles naturally not knowing about the other two. One day however, the local bishop decided to build a church here. This church right here.” Severus nodded towards the church couple of meters in front of them.

Harry was so enjoying the sound of the smooth baritone voice he completely forgot where he was. He looked up and took in the dim and slightly frightening old building with its dark towers spiking towards the star filled sky.

“What did the pixies have against a church?” Harry asked curious.

“Nothing,” Severus smiled at him, ambling around the parish. “They feared the bells that came all the way from Wales. You see, once the bells were installed, their rule over this land would be over. They knew this perfectly well, so they cast a spell that led the monks who carried the bells, to the cliff’s edge at Sidmouth instead of Ottery.”

“Wow, that’s evil.” Harry laughed.

“Well, they are mischievous little creatures by nature, and they were about to be exiled from their own land. The muggle legend concludes that one of the monks stomped his feet at the edge saying “God bless my soul” and the pixie magic broke, however as you may realize that is not what happened.”

“Wizards.” Harry said.

“Exactly. A talented wizard named John Coke was able to break the pixie charm. He wanted the pixies as far away as possible as he and all the others in the wizarding society were fed up with the pixies continuous mishaps. That however was not the end of John Coke’s story. The revengeful pixies with all their anger about the loss of their green hills where exiled to a place called Pixie’s Parlour. What Coke did not know was that the pixie charm was not completely broken and one day every year the pixies were able to leave the Parlour.”

They were walking in the cemetery now, which lay right behind the church, and Severus stopped Harry with his hand and turned him toward one of the tombs.

“That’s... that’s him,” Harry whispered in awe. “John Coke.”

“Precisely.” Severus answered and after a second of hesitation, he slid his fingers down from Harry’s arm to his hand and took hold of it. Harry was facing the grave but Severus caught his giddy smile. “Coke’s older brother was the man who instructed the building of the church, the vicar of the little town. A year after Coke’s victory over the pixies the building of the church was finally finished and he made his soldier brother the church’s bell ringer. The two brothers worked hard together and they were valued by not just the wizarding but by the muggle society as well. On a dark day in June, the vicar and the bell ringer learned that the pixie magic was not fully destroyed when the little menace creatures came and took the younger brother.”

“Did they kill him?” Harry asked shivering.

“Not yet.” Severus answered. “They took John Coke to the Pixie’s Parlour in hope that his brother would follow him too.”

“Two birds with one stone.” Harry noted almost inaudible.

“Exactly. Except the older brother was a coward and he never went after John Coke. The wizards and witches of the town knew what had happened between the brothers and they started leaving town one by one because they thought Pixie magic had changed their beloved vicar into a cruel monster. The muggles only knew that their faithful and loving vicar had lost his brother, who was clearly murdered they realized when they found the body in the river next day. The vicar started drinking and they found him on the street in a drunken haze stumbling from wall to wall murmuring “It was me...” and “It was entirely my fault”. They had already heard the gossip from the wizarding families and they started believing that the vicar himself killed his brother. That was more than the older Coke could handle and in another drunken haze he went to the Parlour by himself. He was never heard from again.”

“Wow, that’s an amazing story, Severus.” Harry said honestly. “A bit scary. But still... awesome.” He breathed looking into the dark eyes.

“Wizards have been avoiding the town ever since then however pointlessly. The pixies are still locked in the Parlour and the only time of the year they can roam freely over their land is Midsummer’s Night.” Severus concluded.

“How do you know this?” Harry asked interested.

“I heard bits and pieces from my muggle grandmother who lived in this town, however I learned the truth behind the legend from Coke himself.”

“What?” Harry cried up. “He’s still alive? But that’s... that’s...”

“Impossible.” Sounded a cheerful voice from behind them. “Alive is not quite an accurate term to describe my situation, Sir.” A glowing figure behind them laughed.

Harry turned around just to see a younger man floating there with eerie blue-white light gloving around his almost completely transparent body.

“Severus, boy, good to see you again. Look at you all grown up. What a dashing man you became.” The ghost of John Coke smiled at Severus who returned the gesture equally nicely.

“You on the other hand, old friend have not changed a single bit.” Severus teased the ghost.

“And who is this handsome young fellow clutching onto you so vehemently.” The ghost winked at Harry.

“John, let me introduce you my partner, Harry.” Severus said and Harry detected a tiny bit of pride in his deep voice.

“Hello Sir,” Harry welcomed the ghost with a cheerful smile.

“Oh my dear laddie, call me John. So, you heard my story. Fancied it as well, I hope.” The ghost said hopefully.

“Absolutely.” Harry nodded. “That part about your brother though... That was...” Harry didn’t know how to finish the sentence.

“Oh that bloody Billy, what a ball of snail slime he was. But none the less dear Harry, it was a long time ago and I’ve been perfectly happy since accepting my fate.”

“Happy?” Harry asked incredulous.

“Of course!” The ghost barked laughing. “Nothing better than scaring the muggles out of their pants every now and then. Halloween around here is especially fun. Right, Severus?”

“If my memory serves right, it was fun if you did not have a solid body. I, on the other hand, have one and I still remember the beating I almost got from the miller that one fall. Thank Merlin that man was three times my size and I was a small but brisk kid.” Severus laughed. “We were pulling Halloween pranks on the muggles who dared come up here at Halloween.” Severus explained to Harry.

“Good old days,” John sighed heavily but with twinkling eyes remembering back with happiness. “This man of yours, Harry he was quite the kid. Chatty little boy, visiting his grandmother a couple of times every year. So scared when he first saw me, didn’t know what got into him.” Coke laughed booming.

“Chatty? You?” Harry grinned at Severus. “What happened since then?” He smirked.

“Exactly my boy, what happened? Haven’t seen you around here in ages. It was quiet lonely here, all by myself.” John said. “You were about what, eleven when your grandmother past away? Haven’t seen you since the funeral.”

“A lot has happened since then John, I’m sorry I was not able to visit.” Severus said quietly and Harry saw the dark shadow that run across his face.

“I can see that.” John smirked wiggling an eyebrow at Harry. “Good little fella you have there.” That comment made Harry blush.

Severus smiled gently. “He is indeed a good man.”

“Perfect,” boomed Coke spinning around his own grave. “But now I have to ask you to excuse me, but I have to visit the goats.” He said with mischief in his eyes and then vanished.

“Goats?” Harry asked with laugh in his voice but Severus just shrugged. He took Harry’s hand again and started walking towards the restaurant.

“Who knows...” He murmured. “After his death, he vowed to warn off and, if needed, protect any wizard kind who steps through the town borders. That is the reason why he has never left this place. Maybe his vow now includes goats as well.”

“How do you even know him?” Harry asked.

“As he said, I used to visit my muggle grandmother here couple of times a year. It was just her, my mother and myself. Best times in my life those were. Once, I wondered away from my mother, I could not have been older than six or seven at that time, and I ended up here. It started getting dark and cold and I was alone and scared, I started crying. That was when I first met him.”

“Must have been a relief meeting a real ghost when you were already scared.” Harry said sarcastically.

“Well, yes.” Severus smiled “But then my mother came and picked me up. Next day, I came back again. I wanted to know who he was or rather what he was. That was the first time in my life I had seen a ghost, you see. We started talking and he told me his story. I found it fascinating and by the time he finished I realized he wasn’t scary at all. And that’s how I became friends with him." Severus sighed. “He was my first friend. And the only one for the next three years.”

“That’s more than what I had till Ron and Hermione.” Harry said.

“What do you mean? Surely you had someone outside the wizarding world, schoolmates, or anyone.”

“No, not really.” Harry admitted. “Dudley, my cousin, made sure no one ever wanted to be friends with me. He was a sort of bully, and he... well he basically beat everyone who came near me. And then beat me too. Just for fun.” Harry said and the simple matter-of-fact way he spoke made Severus stop.

“Harry, are you telling me your cousin beat you from time to time and your uncle didn’t do anything?”

“Oh he did,” Harry said. “He watched and applauded.”

What?” Severus hissed angrily and Harry got frightened for a second.

“It’s alright, Severus,” Harry said calming. “It’s in the past now; since I realized I’m a wizard they don't usually do anything like that. I mean it’s not home sweet home over there, but at least I have my own room and stuff. And whenever I pull out my wand, Dudley simply runs away. So it’s even kinda fun sometimes actually.” Harry said thinking about it. “I can manage them.” He said a bit proudly.

“Alright?” Severus groaned. “Alright? Harry, love, there is nothing ‘alright’ about an abusive family. Oh the things I would like to do to them.” He growled and that warmed Harry’s heart.

They continued towards the restaurant and Severus kept on mumbling to himself about how he would prefer to punish the Dursleys. Harry was able to catch some of the lines like “tear them apart, one by one” or “just a few drops of Living Death”. It made Harry smile.

“That bloody Dumbledore.” Severus murmured under his breath but of course, Harry heard that too.

“What does Dumbledore have to do with this?” He asked.

“Everything.” Severus sighed.

They sauntered silently on the winding, cobblestone streets until they reached the nice restaurant. Owl’s Inn was its name, Harry could read it on the wooden emblem that hung over the main entrance. Wide windows were next to the door on both sides and the place had a welcoming warm feeling.

They stepped in and Harry saw a few other people sitting at the tables that were covered with red and white chequered cloth. A young woman, Amelia, walked them to a booth at the window and while they sat down, she lit a candle on the table.

“Thank you Amelia,” Severus said to the redhead girl.

“Oh, please call me Amy.” She answered and then looked at Harry. “Is this table all right?” She went on with a genuine smile, “If you would prefer sitting anywhere else just let me know.”

“No, it’s perfect, thank you.” Harry smiled.

She then promised to return in a couple of minutes with water and the menus as well.

“This is a great place.” Harry said looking around.

“When my grandmother used to work here, I would spend most of my mornings here with her. They make one of the best coffees in England here. Every morning I came here and they gave me a cup of fresh coffee, they said it would make me into a fine man. My mother was always against it, but grandmother always let me have it none the less.” Severus smiled at Harry.

“And you have loved coffee ever since.” The young man laughed.

Severus nodded with a teasing grin, “Exactly.”

They got the menus and went over it for a couple of minutes deciding what to have. Harry asked Severus what he suggested but the man had to admit he hadn’t been here for many years. Though a few items on the menu did seem familiar so he suggested that to Harry hoping they hadn’t changed the original flavours that much during the who knows however many years since he had been here.

“If you don't mind me asking, what business do you have with that cockroach Skeeter?” Severus asked suddenly remembering where Harry spent his Valentine’s Day afternoon.

“Oh that...“ Harry answered slowly. “I gave her an interview of sorts.”

“A what?” Severus asked gleefully. “Look at our dearest Golden Boy, giving interviews and what not.” Severus teased him.

“It wasn’t like that,” Harry protested more vehemently than necessary. “We talked about what happened in the cemetery.”

“Oh Merlin, surely you are not serious, Harry.”

“I am,” Harry said, lifting his chin. “The Daily Prophet has been writing lies about me and Dumbledore all year and I had enough. Well it was actually Hermione’s idea. She talked to Luna, her dad is the editor of the Quibbler and they would print the interview. People need to know what happened Severus, and maybe the Quibbler is not the most trustworthy newspaper out there but maybe, maybe people who don’t believe in the Prophet anymore will read it and believe me finally. They have to get ready for Voldemort and-“ Harry went quiet as Severus raised a hand noting he’d like to say something.

“I am not suggesting that telling people about what happened is wrong, on the contraire actually, I believe it is quite a good idea, but Harry, Rita Skeeter? That woman will turn upside down every word you utter.” Severus said, concern filling his voice.

“That she can't.” Harry said with a mischievous grin.

“What did you do you little minx.” Severus smiled.

“Me, nothing.” Harry laughed. “Hermione on the other hand...”

“Honestly, that girl. Remind me never to cross her.” Severus ran a hand through his long black hair.

“Yeah, I know. I hope I never hurt her, otherwise the consequences...” Harry shuddered.

“Precisely...”

Amy arrived to their table with two plates she put down in front of the two men.

“Have a good one, gents and if there’s anything I can do for you, don't hesitate to ask.” She said with a bright smile. When they nodded and assured her that everything is still perfect she turned around and left.

 Followed by Severus curious gaze, Harry forked into his mashed potato and moaned slightly, “Mmmm Severus, this is delicious.”

“I am pleased you like it.” He tried his own pasta as well and was surprised to realize it tasted to the last bit like the one he used to eat here as a child. “Would you like to try it?” He pushed the plate towards Harry who shrugged and took a bit into his mouth.

“Mm, wow, this is good too.” He said with closed eyes enjoying the taste lingering in his mouth. “I hope their desserts are this good too.”

“I do not know about their desserts but I can ensure you the one I have on the menu for you this evening will be immensely more delicious.” Severus let a teasing smile on his face as he licked a drop of sauce from his finger.

Harry blushed and cleared his throat. “We’re in a restaurant, Severus.” He smiled still flustered.

“Do not attempt to try and convince me that you would have any problem if I were to start massaging your cock with my feet right about now.” Severus said suggestively and for a second Harry expected a feet moving between his legs.

“I actually would.” He said when the feet stayed away.

Severus raised a brow questioningly.

“I don't think,” Harry went on burying his gaze in the black eyes in front of him, “I could go through this evening with a hard on and a ring tightly around it.”

“Don't tell me you’re wearing it right now.” Severus murmured lustfully.

“Has been since I dressed.” Harry shrugged nonchalantly, though knowing precisely what kind of affect this had on Severus who started stirring in his seat.

“Harry...” Severus said slowly and took a deep breath. “Consider yourself lucky.”

“Because...?” Harry asked cocky.

“Because, love, the only reason I’m not dragging you to the nearest restroom and fucking you right there is because I have something even better for both of us after we arrive back home.” He whispered and leaned halfway across the table.

“That sounds... good.” Harry groaned leaning forward too, pressing his lips against Severus’.

“So...” Severus sat back and cleared his throat. “Skeeter.”

“Oh right,” Harry went back to his food too. “Last year Hermione discovered that she’s an unregistered animagus and she can turn into a beetle. She caught her in a jar. She made her promise that she would never write anything about me ever again or any other lies for that matter otherwise she will tell Skeeter’s secret to the Ministry. So, when we sat with her at the Three Broomsticks Hermione made her promise to write down only what I say and the way I say it or otherwise... I’m pretty sure she will behave after all they went through I think she knows Hermione enough to know not to go back on any deals she made with our girl.” Harry finished proud of his friend.

“I cannot wait to read that paper. I’m quite sure Umbridge will not like what she will see however I hope you will and Skeeter won't sell the story to the Prophet.”

“Well if she does, next time she can write a story on the interior design of Azkaban.” Harry laughed.

They ate silently for a while then Amy came and brought them some more water and the dessert menu. She asked if they were pleased with their order and when they reassured her that it was delicious she smiled happily and went away.

“Tell me something Harry” Severus said putting his cutlery down, trying to hold back a smirk. “You are a clever and intelligent young man, how on bloody earth do you manage to mess up your work in my class. I’ve seen you plenty times doing your homework and I know you do more than fine without Miss Granger’s help. If you are talented enough to understand the theoretical part of Potions why does the practical side give you so much trouble?”

“Why do you ask?” Harry asked gulping.

“Besides the fact that I love you and care for you I ask because I am utterly fed up with giving you detention all the time.” Severus smirked.

“Well... It’s kinda because of you...” Harry admitted.

“Me? What have I done last time for instance?”

“Well.” Harry said carefully. “You walked past me.”

“Excuse me?” Severus laughed.

“You heard me,” Harry mumbled fluttered.

“I fail to understand why exactly that would make you explode your cauldron and almost burn down your hands to ashes.” Severus raised a brow.

“Well… you distract me.” Harry answered.

“With walking?” The incredulous tone in Severus’ voice increased.

“Pretty much with your very presence, to start with…” Harry confessed mumbling but naturally Severus heard him. There was a moment of silence before the professor smiled, eyes flashing dangerously.

“Are you finished?” Severus asked with a slight urging in his baritone voice, nodding towards Harry’s plate. When Harry nodded, the older man fished some muggle notes out of his pocket and dropped it on the table.

Severus grabbed Harry’s hand, which was resting on the table and dragged him out of the restaurant. Harry nodded towards Amy before the door closed behind them and the next moment he found himself in the dark alley, they had previously arrived in. He suspected apparition was involved in the sudden change of the scene. When his body was crushed to the wall behind him with Severus’ lips hovering over his however, every comprehensible thought simply vanished from his mind.

“Shall we add a few more memories to that list of distractions, my dear?” Severus murmured and Harry shivered hearing his low voice.

“Shouldn’t you be the sensible one and stop me from ruining all my potions?” The young man grinned running a hand through the slightly curly black hair.

“As if I have a say in that...” Severus raised a brow. “I walk past you and you nearly kill yourself you fool.” Severus breathed deeply.

“I shamelessly admit that is true.” Harry moaned pressing against Severus’ body like a cat in heat.

“What am I to do with you?” Severus hissed brushing his lips against Harry’s. “Oh the things you do to me, Harry, you do not even realize half of it. You think you can just say things like that to me and it would not affect me but you are wrong. Oh so, so wrong on so many levels. Do you think I’m not hard when you look up at me from beside your cauldron, your green eyes making me shiver in the middle of the classroom and then I am just not able to concentrate on correcting any test or mark a few simple pieces of homework? Do you believe that I do not dwell on the idea of using Legilimency on you during a lesson just to see if you are thinking about me?”

“It would be pointless...” Harry murmured pushing his abdomen closer to Severus. “You know I’m thinking about you. Every day,” Harry said nipping on Severus’ lips, “every hour and every minute. You linger in my mind like a nagging thought, constantly at the border of my attention as if you would be part of it, a part of me. I hold a book and I think ‘Would you find it interesting?’ or I’m eating something delicious and suddenly all I want to do is share it with you. You’re always with me.”

“I know the feeling,” Severus admitted lashing his tongue along Harry’s jaw line. His hands sneaked around Harry’s waist caressing the young man through his green shirt. It was cold and both their coats were unbuttoned after their swift departure from the restaurant. He knew they would have to go back to the castle soon however, he knew once they were back in the castle, in his room, he would have to confide in Harry, telling him something he never wanted his partner to know.

Harry must have felt his hesitation or maybe he could just read him better, than anyone ever, because the next second he asked, “Is there something wrong?”

“I need to show you something.” Severus admitted in a low voice. “Shall we go back?”

Harry raised an eyebrow and didn’t answer for a couple of seconds trying to read Severus’ face. When he couldn't decipher the determined look on his professor’s features he nodded.

“Let’s go.” He said reaching for his Invisibility Cloak.

Severus moved a step behind and when Harry donned the cloak, he reached towards the young man. Warm, invisible fingers clasped onto his hand and he disapparated.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry dropped the cloak when they were both finally between the safe walls of Severus’ private chamber. He wondered what Severus wanted to show him so badly. He was half excited and half scared. He took off his coat as well and laid it down on a chair. Severus dropped his own over Harry’s and then stepped in front of the younger man.

“As I said,” Severus started and Harry could hear hesitation in his voice, “I need to show you something. However before you see it, you need to know this happened way before us.”

Harry nodded wordlessly as he wasn’t sure what exactly to say to that. The next moment Severus raised his wand and whispered “Legilimens”.

A picture showed up in Harry’s mind however, this time it wasn’t his. Was he seeing Severus’ memory? But why? Severus could have just told him.

But then the scene in front of him cleared and everything was sharp as if it was the present and Harry suddenly understood why Severus didn’t want to tell him about this. What he witnessed was indescribable.

A man was spread out on a high table that was covered with black satin. Heavy iron shackles tied him tightly to the side of the desk below him, so tightly in fact that blood was dripping from the still open wounds around his wrists and ankles. But blood was everywhere else, as well. His naked arse was covered in long red lines, some of which still dribbled blood however not as badly as his wrists. Harry wondered what had caused the red marks all over the man’s bottom and thighs but then he noticed a black walking stick to the side, and on the stick there was something gleaming wet and dark in the candle light. The man moaned and though he couldn't see his head, Harry was sure he must have been in great pain.

Why did he have to see this? What was going on?

“You behaved well, Lucius.” A way too familiar voice sounded behind him and Harry turned around with a sudden motion. Severus was standing not far from the high table, clearing his hands with a red piece of cloth. Suddenly Harry realized that rag hadn’t always been red and he felt an uncomfortable twitch behind his navel.

Then he understood what he had heard.

“Lucius?” He said out aloud not even aware of it. “Lucius Malfoy?”

“You’ve earned your reward.” Severus said and walked to Malfoy, a satisfied grin shining on his face. Harry walked around the table to see if it was indeed Mr. Malfoy lying on his stomach, naked and scarred on Severus’ table. The man’s face was covered with a mask and Harry knew he had already seen this kind of mask before in a dark cemetery. Though he couldn't see the face, the long, silvery blond hair that wrapped around the dark mask was way too familiar.

Severus picked up the walking stick from the ground and traced Malfoy’s back with it. He pulled it over the length of his spine then between his buttocks and Harry heard Malfoy’s moan again and he knew this time it wasn’t because of pain.

Severus continued teasing the man, caressing him with the walking stick on the inner side of Malfoy’s leg then he went back to his bottom. Malfoy moaned keenly, tensing against his restrain, the shackles cutting into his fine skin and he moaned even more ardently.

Severus summoned a round bottle and poured a decent amount of that transparent liquid between Malfoy’s spread out bottom cheeks rubbing it roughly. He smiled as he spilled some over the walking stick as well then pressed the lubricated cane against Malfoy’s hole.

Harry suddenly realized that he felt hot and he was breathing unevenly, waiting for Severus to push that rod inside, waiting perhaps just as keenly as Mr. Malfoy. He expected a sudden move from Severus but obviously the professor wasn’t in a hurry at all. He placed a hand on Lucius’ back caressed his skin and slowly, excruciatingly slowly he pushed the cane in just a bit.

Harry simultaneously heard Malfoy’s muffled screams of pleasure and his own ardent moan. He felt himself harden as he watched Severus push the cane inside the other man inch by inch and when he couldn't drive it any further up, Severus started fucking Malfoy with his own walking stick. Lucius clearly enjoyed the attention, sweat was shining on his lean body, his muscles tensed under his pale skin as he tried to rock back against the wetly gleaming stick.

However Severus suddenly stopped and pulled out the cane. Harry couldn't imagine how bad Malfoy must have been feeling at that moment, so close to his orgasm and though he hated the man he felt sorry for him for a single second as he was listening to his keen gasps.

“Stand up, Lucius.” Severus moaned harshly and the chains disappeared from Malfoy’s body.

The blond man stood up and Harry noticed how much his legs were shaking under his weight. Malfoy turned around and faced Severus who waved and the mask disappeared, revealing the handsome face and Harry didn’t fail to observe that Malfoy’s face was still wet from tears but also flushed, almost red from his very obvious sexual arousal. Harry couldn't help it, he glanced over the pale body in front of him and marvelled at the hard manhood between the man’s legs, shining with pre-come.

“Who said you can turn around?” Severus sneered and Malfoy turned his back to Severus.

“I am sorry, Master.” Malfoy said.

“Did I give you permission to talk?” Severus spat as if talking to a dog and Harry suddenly felt bad about this whole scene but obviously, Malfoy knew he had done something wrong because he lowered his head and remained in silence.

“You know what you deserve for your disobedience.” Severus groaned and suddenly Malfoy spread his legs widely and put his hands on his nape. Clearly, he knew exactly what he deserved.

Severus smiled mildly then grabbed Malfoy by his interlocked fingers and pushed him down on the table. “Count them loudly.” He said and Harry didn’t understand what he was talking about but then Severus leaned back and smacked the walking stick against Malfoy’s ass. The snap was so loud Harry expected a wide, bleeding cut but Malfoy’s skin only became red.

“One.” Lucius grumbled withholding a painful gasp.

The cane came down four more times but before Malfoy said the last number, it was already pushed inside him again.

“F-five.” He gasped and Harry saw how hard it was for him not to push back against the rod. His cock was red and so hard Harry knew he would come by one touch.

Severus pulled out the walking stick and let it fall on the ground. He pressed a hand on Malfoy’s lower back, he opened his fly and pulled out his own hard and wet cock. Within a second, he pushed inside Malfoy and Harry closed his eyes because he didn’t want to see Severus fucking someone else even if it happened many years ago.

As if the real Severus could feel his thoughts the connection between them broke and Harry found himself standing in his professor’s room panting and hard like never before.

“What....?” He gasped. “Why did you show that to me?”

“Because you needed to know that there is – was another side to my sexual habits. These, what you witnessed now, were the only kind of activities that excited me. Once I was, what you might call a dominant partner to my sub, namely Lucius Malfoy, I am sure you recognized him. This was long ago, before I came here to teach. I needed you to see this, because there is something you need to know. I’ve always been the dominant part in a relationship that, I am sure, is already obvious to you.”

Harry nodded mutely.

“There are many reasons behind why I always preferred this option however the most important would be that I did not trust my partners enough to let them take control over the situation and therefore my body. I have never trusted anyone enough to let them even hold me down especially not to tie me up. You see Harry, when I was a child, my father abused me and my mother. During those hours when he was beating my mother or me, I lost control over everything. My body, my mind, even my magic. After his death, I promised myself that I would never let that happen again, I would never surrender myself to any other human being. I would never completely open up for anyone because if you open yourself, if you spill all your secrets to a person, they have power over you. That is why Voldemort would never be able to completely read me, which is why I am the perfect spy: because I do not open up to anyone.”

Harry listened to Severus with a feverishly beating heart. What was he getting at?

“Except, of course, you.” Severus smiled. “Do you remember what I said that night at Grimmauld Place after Black and Lupin found out about us?”

Harry nodded, of course he remembered.

“I told you that my heart, my soul and my body belongs to you now. And it is time that I prove that to you.”

“What do you mean prove?” Harry asked suddenly. “You don't need to prove anything Severus, I know you love me.”

“You still don't understand.” Severus smiled conjuring a green silk scarf. “Love, in my case, is one thing; trust, utter and utmost trust however is something I have never given anyone except you.” He said as he kneeled down in front of Harry. Severus was still smiling when he tied the scarf in front of his eyes.

“I am at your disposal.” Severus whispered before he tapped his silvery shirt that stretched invitingly on his chest with his wand and removed everything that covered him, leaving himself utterly naked in front of Harry. Then Severus did the most incredible thing and stretched his wand out for Harry to take it.

And at that moment, Harry understood. Severus offered up his soul when he first said he loved him, offered his body now as he was kneeling blindfolded in front of Harry, and what was the most amazing he also offered him his magic. If Harry took that wand Severus would be -most likely first time in about twenty-five years- completely powerless. Harry could never imagine how hard this must have been to Severus, a dominant soul, to give up every power, to surrender every possibility of fighting back if he, once again, put his faith into the wrong hands.

Hesitantly, Harry took the wand and Severus put both his hands on his nape just as Lucius did in that memory. Harry blinked at the matte black wand that felt much heavier in his hand than he expected. As he watched the wand, and the tentative seconds slowly ticked by a sudden realization stuck him. He could do anything with Severus and the man would be helpless. Harry could break this fine quality wooden rod in his hand with a snap, it wouldn’t even be an effort and Severus couldn't do anything against it because Harry still had his own wand. Harry could strike Severus, the Potions Master wouldn’t even see the forceful hit coming towards him. He could do anything and everything with Severus Snape.

Harry’s heart hammered in his chest and he felt terrified. He was terrified of the power he suddenly had over another human being. Scared to death because what if this power fell into the wrong hands and someone hurt this man. Severus was his now, he belonged with Harry and it was Harry’s sole responsibility to protect him from any harm.

He kneeled down too and put down the wand to the ground next to them. He raised a hand a pressed it lightly and timidly over Severus’ franticly beating heart. Severus flinched almost unnoticed but Harry could feel his body becoming relaxed as he gently caressed his chest with feather like fingers.

Harry slid his hands around Severus waist then up on his back until he reached the enfolded fingers over Severus’ nape. His face was close to Severus and he wondered if the man could feel how close exactly. Harry let his warm breath stroke Severus face as his lips hovered over his jaw. Not touching Severus with his mouth yet, he let his lips float over the long neck, drifting from one sesitive area to another leaving them, however, untouched.

He let his lips fly downwards, still not touching, just lingering mere inches from the pale skin. He breathed hot air over Severus’ nipple and the man gasped. Their hands were still connected at Severus’ nape, which left Harry at a not quite comfortable position but he didn’t care. He exhaled over Severus’ chest, warm, wet breath skimmed the hair on the soft flesh and Severus stirred. Another nipple was under Harry’s lips and he thought for a second, why not and let the wet tip of his tongue glide over it.

Severus’ moan was a pleasing reward.

Harry went back up and returned to his professor’s mouth. He observed the thin lips and once again, he licked lightly across the soft red skin. Severus sighed sensually and Harry felt a rush of arousal behind his navel. Just one, he promised himself, when he leaned in to the welcoming lips and kissed Severus who responded instantly yet not moving in any other way. Just his lips were touching Harry’s teasingly, softly, yet keenly.

Harry clasped Severus’ fingers, pulled them apart, and then drew them forwards.

“Stand up, Severus.” He said and stood up, pulling Severus gently to his feet. He took both their wands in one hand and Severus’ slightly trembling right hand in his other. He steered the blindfolded man to the bedroom and saw with a surprise that the older wizard had arranged the chamber according to their needs tonight.

The whole room was lighted by floating black candles. The bed was covered with bottle green satin bed sheets. On the emerald blanket and pillows, crimson red and vivid orange rose petals were scattered across and the sentiment in that filled Harry’s heart as if there were a ball of fire in his chest.

“Red represents love, courage, beauty and respect.” Severus said in a low voice behind him as if reading his thoughts. “Orange symbolizes fascination and desire.”

Harry nodded wordlessly and his eyes went to the equipment lined up on the nightstand. A thin riding crop with a small piece of leather at the front, a thicker rod, about as wide as Harry’s pinkie, ropes and chains, in various length and thickness, masks, gags and several other things Harry didn’t even know the name of.

He grasped Severus’ hand tightly and staggered backwards a few unsteady steps.

“It‘s all right, Harry.” Severus said when he stepped right behind the young man. “You don't have to do anything, you wouldn’t like to do.” Severus said as he caressed calmingly Harry’s hand over his pulse point.

 “I don't... I-I can't... Severus I can't use those on you.” Harry whispered with shaking voice. “I can't hurt you.”

“You do whatever you wish, Harry. If you feel uncomfortable or you have had enough just say ‘orange’. If either of us says that word, we will stop with whatever we are doing. I do not want you to think I am forcing you to do this. I more than understand if you would not like to do any of this and you should know that if you prefer to take off the blindfold and return to our usual activities, it would not change a single aspect of our relationship.”

“Alright,” Harry said calmer now. “But I won't use those.”

“As you wish.” Severus said and Harry waved his wand towards the tools and made them disappear.

He turned towards his professor and looked over the man once more. Severus’ black hair reached his shoulders and gave a beautiful contrast to the pale skin that shined in the candle light. As if Severus was aware of his exploring glance, he straightened up and took a deep breath. Harry saw the rising chest, the long, thin arms, the narrow hips, the protruding hipbones, and the dark hair that started under Severus’ navel and went all the way down to the half hard cock that stirred under Harry’s scrutiny.

Severus trusted him with something and he wouldn’t betray that trust.

“Stay here, Severus. Don't move, don't do anything. I’ll be back in a sec.” Harry said with determination in his voice.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus nodded towards where he suspected Harry’s face was. He stood motionless while he heard Harry step away from him. Suddenly there was a hand on his back, sliding from his shoulder down towards his hip and then to his front. He felt Harry’s aura at his back and then a warm body pressed against him from behind. The hand was pressed down firmly as if it were hard for Harry to let him go. The thought warmed his heart.

“I will be back before you know it.” Harry whispered against his nape and then kissed his skin lightly.

The warm body disappeared and he heard the door shut. His body was now more sensitive because his eyesight was masked and he had to lean on other senses. He heard voices from outside, one was Harry’s but the other was high pitched and he wasn’t sure who it belonged to.

Cold air caressed his backside when the door opened again and Harry came in the room. He heard him put something down on the nightstand. Anticipating shivers run through his whole body.

“Alright.” Harry said and he was standing right in front of him again. “Severus.” He heard his own name and his lips twitched slightly into a smile.

“Yes?” Severus asked and he could hear Harry’s heavy gulp not two feet from him.

“Undress me.” It was a clear command that made him instantly harder.

Severus reached toward Harry and let them slide on the thin material of Harry’s shirt towards the top button. He undid it and a let his forefinger slide on the warm skin until he reached the second button. He heard Harry’s sigh and knew the man had just dropped his head back slightly. He opened the third and the forth button as well, his movements were accompanied by Harry’s ardent sighs.

Harry had his shirt tucked in so Severus grabbed the edges of the material and pulled on them until they slid out completely from the dark pants. He unbuttoned the shirt all the way down and slithered his hands over Harry’s abdomen. He caressed the smooth skin all the way up. His middle fingers brushing over Harry’s nipples on both sides drew a long intake of breath from the younger man. His fingers slid over Harry’s slim shoulders and pressed the shirt down from them, completely down on Harry’s arm until he heard it fall to the ground.

Severus didn’t want to take his hands off Harry so he took the same route back again. When he reached Harry’s pants, he unbuckled the belt and opened the fly. He started pushing down the pants, meanwhile he pushed Harry slightly backwards towards his bed. When the trousers were at Harry’s knees, the young man sat down on the bed and Severus kneeled down in front of him again. He took off Harry’s shoes and socks and pulled the heavy pants all the way down.

He knew Harry still had his underwear on, so he slid his hand upwards on the bony ankles and the muscled calves. He caressed the knees and the soft thigh before he pushed Harry’s legs slightly apart. Harry must have known what he wanted because suddenly Severus felt him move and the legs beneath his finger rose up from the bed. Severus was sure Harry had pushed himself up, leaning on his hands.

Severus slid his fingertips beneath the soft material and started pulling it down slowly. He took a deep breath when he smelled the unmistakable scent of Harry’s aroused state. He held himself back and kept doing only what Harry asked him to do. He pulled the boxers down and left them on the ground.

Harry moved again and he felt the radiating heat near his face and body.

“Lie on the bed, Severus.” Harry’s next command came from further above, the young man was standing again. He stood up too and kneeled on the centre of the bed. He felt the rose petals under his legs and palm, soft and fresh.

“On your back.” Harry said seeing his hesitation and Severus complied.

He was in the middle of the bed and he heard Harry’s movement around the bed. He felt fingers around his right wrist and then something soft sneaked around his hand. It wasn’t a rope but something thinner and wider and much, much softer, like a scarf or a long silk fabric. At first, he thought Harry would tie him up lightly but there was a sudden and forceful tug and he couldn't move his right arm anymore.

Fear and excitement mixed in him as Harry tied up his other hand and both his legs as well. He yanked the restrain but his limbs barely moved, he was completely spread out on his back. Panic rose in him when he felt the bed sink under Harry’s weight but in the meantime, he became harder.

Something dripped on his chest and then dribbled down to his stomach. It wasn’t cold nor hot but Harry’s wet tongue that was instantly on him burned his skin when they connected. He moaned loudly at the sudden touch not expecting anything like this.

Something wet touched down on him and Harry drew a long line with it starting from his collarbone and going towards the middle of his chest. He could smell something nicely sweet, not chocolate, something fresher and more natural. Then the tip of Harry’s tongue touched him again, licked through the wet line while drawing another one on his left side. Huge droplets oozed out from the soft, malleable thing, tickling Severus as they dribbled down on his body. He shivered wildly and tensed against his restrain. A finger traced the long lines of wetness, smearing it. Severus gasped again and suddenly he felt wetness at his lips. For a second he thought it was Harry’s lips and he wasn’t far from the truth. Harry held something between his lips and slid it into Severus’ mouth when he had opened his mouth to kiss the younger wizard. Deliciously sweet wetness came from the fresh, fleshy piece of peach that was so soft, it almost melted on his tongue.

Another slice of peach trailed his lower lips and the tip of Harry’s tongue followed it closely. It went down the front of his neck and he could feel the nectar trickle down and assemble in the dip of his jugular notch.

He couldn't help but hiss abruptly when Harry, after long seconds, finally arrived to his navel with the fruit. He circled the peach around his belly button and then must have pressed it inches over Severus’ skin because heavy droplets fall in his navel and Severus pushed himself away from the bed when he felt Harry’s velvety tongue dip into it too.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry could see that Severus’ erection was painfully hard, smearing wet precome on his stomach as he was twisting his groin. Harry was unsure that his actions were what Severus had in mind, but it was clear to him, that the man liked it. He licked his lips as he glided the sweet peach over Severus’ erection from the very tip to its base however, he didn’t lick it yet. He wanted to wait with that. He repeated the motion and saw with a satisfied smirk how Severus had to bite into his lips while his hips buckled up.

He dropped the peach on the plate Dobby brought him previously, and took out an ice cube. It was time for a little change. He placed a leg over Severus and sat on the man’s thighs carefully avoiding any contact with his cock. He took the ice cube between his lips and started drawing circles and all kinds of motives over Severus’ slim body. He saw the little goose bumps rise everywhere he went.

Even though Severus was tied up, Harry slid his hands over the man’s outstretched arms and held him down strongly. His fingers were clasping rigidly around the slim wrist and Harry knew it would leave some marks behind just like the soft fabric.

He touched the ice cube to Severus’ nipple and the man moaned harshly. He did it again with the other one then took the hard nipple into his mouth with the ice cube and sucked it fervently. Harry knew the ice-cold touch must have burned Severus’ skin but he must have liked the feeling because Harry had never seen him this ecstatic.

Severus was thrashing beneath Harry wildly, pressing against the restraint so violently he almost tore the fabric. Harry went further down on Severus and was almost at the end of the bed when he leaned over the man again. The ice cube had already melted in his mouth but his tongue was still numb and icy. He bent over the other’s crotch and licked over Severus’ balls.

Severus shouted in ecstasy and Harry repeated the motion, sucking on the balls feverishly, while digging his fingernails into the lower half of Severus thighs, and drawing several long red lines. Severus’ cock twitched in response and next Harry carved his nails into the inner side of Severus’ leg, while driving his still icy tongue over the full length of the man’s hard erection. To his surprise Severus whined loudly again, silently begging for more.

But Harry sat up and took in his hand his own hard erection. The cock ring was so tight around it now that it hurt Harry but in a pleasant way. He moaned feverishly at the connection between his sensitive skin and his hands. That gave him an idea. He slid the tip of his cock over Severus right leg and he gasped at the feeling. He went on and nudged his cock to Severus’ balls then lightly over the older man’s length.

Severus was trying to get out of the restraint badly, he was wriggling under Harry like a captive bird.

Harry took Severus’ hard manhood in his hand too and pulled at both, once, twice and third time, each pull accompanied by several enthusiastic moans from Severus. Then he let go of Severus, moved a bit further up, and caressed the other with his own erection leaving trails of pre-come on the way. As he looked down on their bodies, spotting the wet spots on the sweaty, pale skin it felt incredibly sinful but he couldn't help thinking it was erotic and stimulating.

When he gently sat on Severus chest, he was sure the man already knew what he was up to. Severus’ lips parted and he licked them while he was panting hard. Harry grasped into the black velvety hair and raised Severus head by a couple of inches. When the man’s hot breathing first touched his cock, Harry flinched wildly but then as if feeling how close he was, Severus’ tongue darted out and licked the tip of Harry’s cock. With that, Harry pushed his erection inside Severus’ wet mouth and almost came as the man started sucking it.

He put a hand on the headboard steadying himself, before he pushed deeper between Severus lips. Severus moaned around him and the sound vibrated on his cock. Harry almost came but that bloody ring didn’t let him and he was close to crying. Frustrated he thrust into Severus’ mouth, carefully balancing between being forceful but not savage.

“Mmm... fuck...” He moaned desperately, panting wildly just like Severus. “Fuck...Severus...t- that’s so good.”

Severus murmured again and sucked him more harshly, wicked slurping sounds coming from his mouth. Harry tugged at the fistful of hair in his palm and steadied Severus mouth so he wouldn’t be able to move then slowing slightly down he fucked Severus’ mouth driving deeper and deeper. Suddenly he heard a ripping sound and felt long fingers clasping around his hip, seizing him firmly. Severus pulled his hips forwards urging him with fingernails dashing into his skin to thrust deeper and faster and Harry complied happily, his hips bucking wildly back and forth.

Harry was seeing stars but he still couldn't come, the cock ring holding him back. With a final keen thrust, he slid out from between the luscious lips and got off Severus as well. He was standing next to the bed and looked at the man in front of him. Severus was a hot, flustered, aroused mess, Harry thought. His body was shining with sweat, dried pre-come glimmered on several spots all over his skin, his beautiful erection wet and hard, his pale chest rising and falling in a fast rhythm, his lips blood red and swollen, his cheeks pink with ecstasy, his black mane wiggling unruly on the emerald pillows.

“You're incredibly gorgeous, Severus.” Harry murmured before he could even think about it. Severus turned his blindfolded face towards him and smiled.

Harry reached up and took one of the candles. He tilted it slightly over his own arm and the black wax dripped over his skin. He hissed at the burning pain.

He sat back over Severus’ leg and tilted the candle again. Black wax slithered down on the inner side of Severus’ thigh and the man gasped loudly then moaned fervently trashing his head from one side to the other.

Harry tipped the candle again and drew a long line of wax up till Severus’ balls, then spread it. He dripped another line almost right around the man’s weeping erection, while he slid his palm over the rigid shaft. Severus’ free hand clasped around the fabric and twisted in agonising arousal.

Harry shifted his body so that he could sit on Severus’ erection, pressing against him, rolling his hips with every drip of wax that came down over the pale skin. The beautiful contrast registered in Harry’s mind even though he was almost blind from the ecstasy.  Severus’ alabaster skin was covered with black wax and shining pre-come and Harry knew neither of them could hold on much longer. He had never seen Severus so aroused.

He let go of the candle that floated back to its rightful place and grabbed a little bottle of lubricant from the nightstand. He poured a fair amount of the amber liquid over his palm then wetted Severus’ erection with it, making it almost soak in the warm fluid.

“H-Harry, wait...” Severus moaned between the firm strokes. “You... You know you can... you can do anything to me. I am ready for... for anything... for... you.” He stuttered hoarsely and for a second Harry imagined how it would be to glide his erection into Severus’ wet hole and fuck the man, who was tied up and barely able to move but this wasn’t how he wanted to do it the first time.

“Maybe next time...” He whispered to Severus as he grabbed the hard erection and lowered himself on it slowly. At that moment, he was sure the ring was going to break around his arousal. Both of them were crying noisily at the incredible contact as he moved on Severus’ rigid shaft. His eyes were closed tightly from pleasure; his whole body was shaking wildly with lust. Severus’ enthusiastic cries made him harder and keener, inciting him to move faster, to let Severus in deeper.

Harry felt Severus almost vibrate under him and he saw light behind his closed eyes. He was close, so close. Long fingers were around his cock. The metal ring cut into his sensitive skin as Severus removed it slowly. He heard a distant click as it landed on the floor but his hearing was mainly focused on the lustful and keen moans coming from his partner as he pushed his slim hips up wildly. Harry rose and slammed down his body on Severus’ shaft, each thrust bursting millions of stars in his vision.

Harry leaned forward to kiss Severus who rose up as much as his restrained hand let him, meeting Harry halfway waiting for him with swollen red lips ready to tear at Harry’s. As they kissed Harry felt a strange but comfortable warmness build up in his stomach but the feeling was forgotten as Severus came in him with a forceful thrust that sent Harry over the edge too, shooting his seed all over Severus’ stomach and chest. He felt as if his orgasm would never stop. His lips were sealed on Severus’ as they both moaned and gasped, their hard cocks twitching and still shooting semen.

Exhausted and unable to move, Severus collapsed on the bed and Harry followed him, landing on his chest, panting wildly as if he had just run a marathon. Lying on Severus feeling boneless he conjured the rest of his strength and grabbed his wand from the nightstand. He pointed them at the three remaining scarves that held Severus down and charmed them away with the blindfold, as well. He casted a murmured cleaning charm on Severus, his mind barely registering how beautiful the man looked with the frozen black wax and opal semen mixing on his chest.

Through the haze in his head, he noticed the bruised wrists; the red marks already starting to darken. Other raw red bruises covered Severus’ body, who was still panting and twisting slightly as if his orgasm hadn’t passed yet. Harry dipped the rag in the healing potion –another item he previously requested from Dobby- and started mopping it on the bruised area.

Though his mind was half asleep, he made sure to heal all the scars and red marks on the pale skin. He only registered the light moans and gasps he earned from Severus after he was done and, with eyes closed tightly, he fell on the man again, letting the rag drop off from his hand.

“You okay?” He breathed against the now slowly rising and falling chest.

Fingers tugged into his hair and Severus murmured a reassuring “Mmm...”

Harry opened his eyes to look at the man beneath him before he would fell asleep but he suddenly froze.

“Severus!” He said with a terrified, shaking voice. “Severus, something is wrong!” The previous numbness and weariness vanished and panic took its place.

Severus snapped his eyes open and stared at Harry with an alarmed look. Panic flickered in his eyes as he realized what Harry meant.

Harry sat up shaking as he watched the silvery light that beamed from Severus’ body and noticed with horror that his own skin was emitting a golden glow too.

“Wh-what’s happening, Severus?” Harry asked bewildered, reaching out for Severus’ hand but too scared to move any other way. Severus grabbed his hand and when they touched, there was a flash of bright light and for a second neither of them knew what had happened. The blinding flash ebbed away and they found themselves in a web of gold and platinum silver strings shining brightly; the gold ones coming from Harry, the silver ones emitted by Severus’ body. Where their bodies touched, the strings attached themselves together.

“What... is this?” Harry asked studying the continuously swirling, strings of light. Whatever it was, it came from Severus’ chest, most likely rooted in his heart, Harry thought observing the man’s body. He looked down at himself too and noticed how the gold beams were more crowded over his heart too. He tried to touch them in the air but his fingers floated through them as if the strings weren’t even there.

“You see them too, right?” He asked Severus wildly. The man nodded wordlessly. He let go of Harry’s hand to try to touch the beams himself and as their hands came apart the stings entwined their arms, shifting and twirling, pulsing with bright light.

Testing the weird light, Harry pushed his hand closer to Severus and when their hands were close enough, the silvery strings reached out and entangled around his hand and arm, while his golden beams went around Severus fingers and up his arms too. When they touched, the silver beams around him started pulsing like blood in vein, and interlaced with the golden ones.

“Is this...?” Harry stared hesitantly.

“Magic.” Severus said calmly. “Our magic.”

“But why...?”

“Is it visible?” Severus finished smiling. “Harry, I think – and please don't be alarmed – I think we’re... bonding.” Severus said surprised and as if the gleaming string of magic wanted to agree it started pulsing intensely.

“What do you mean bonding?” Harry asked bewildered. “And what do you mean ‘don't be alarmed’? Should I be scared? But bonding sounds... good.” He said frowning, playing with swirling strings as he kept touching Severus here and there.

“If you are bonded with someone, it means you two belong together.”

“I knew that.” Harry said. “I mean, I know we belong together. But why is this happening?” He asked stretching the entangled golden and platinum cords between their bodies.

“No, you don't understand. This is magic, very powerful magic, happening right here and now. This is like the ancient magic of protection you had against Voldemort only stronger, a million times stronger, that’s why you see it. It is not about protection but belonging and connection. This,” Severus said pointing around them, “is our magic connecting.”

“That’s... good. Right?”

“No Harry, what if something happens to me? What if I die? A war is about to break out. If something happens to me, who’s to tell what kind of life awaits you. There’s a chance you will never find love again.” Severus said miserably.

“You idiot.” Harry said slowly and Severus raised a brow in surprise. “Bond or no bond, I could never find love again.” Harry said looking into the onyx eyes. “You’re the only one for me, Severus.”

“You cannot know that. You're still young Harry, your whole life is still ahead.” Severus said and Harry could detect sadness in his voice.

“Yes, a life I’d like to spend with you.” Harry said quickly with emphasis on the last word.

“Harry listen to me love,” Severus said, sitting up. “You are fifteen years old. Fifteen.”

“No,” Harry interrupted before Severus could say something he would regret. “I told you at the very beginning that I don't care if you are older than me, or that you are my Professor. I'm fully aware that our relationship is against the law and not one day goes by without me thinking about what if Dumbledore finds out about us and he arrests you or something. Maybe I am just fifteen years old but during those fifteen years I’ve came across things that would have killed most people. But not me; I survived Severus. You might think I'm just a hormone struck teen but my love for you is as strong as it ever could be. So believe me when I say, my love will not change just because I grow up or become of age. I would die for you, Severus. Happily and without a single hesitation, because I know life without you would be meaningless. So you know what, I don't care if we’re bonded or not because it doesn’t mean anything. I could not be happy without you and I don't need any magic to tell me that.” Harry finished defiantly.

“Harry, I want you to be happy, even if I won’t be here, I just-“

“Why would you not be here?” Harry asked slightly scared.

“Oh Harry, surely you haven’t forgotten about the madman who’s after you. I’m spying on Voldemort for Merlin’s sake, and to be honest I cannot be very optimistic about my future.” Severus said quietly.

“What if I die and you survive, do you think you could fall in love again?” Harry asked suddenly.

“You will not die, Harry.”

“Answer me, Severus. Could you?”

“Of course not.” Severus said quietly. “Never.”

“Neither could I. And if you doubt that, look around us Severus. I’m not an expert but I don't think this web of magic would be here if either of us was meant to love someone else too.”

The light beams started pulsing eagerly again as if showing agreement. Severus leaned forward and pulled Harry in for a tight embrace. The magic around them started swirling faster now as if they had started a reaction. It wasn’t just gold and silver anymore, it shined with every shade of the two colours and Harry had to admit, it was beautiful.

“I love you Harry.” He heard Severus whisper the words gently in his ear. “I love you more than anything.” The light the magical strings emitted was almost blinding now. “Nothing will change that.”

The gold and platinum cords were swirling around them so fast now, they created a wind that surrounded them in a tight shell. Harry could feel the strings streaming all around him, ruffling his hair as if he were flying on his Firebolt.

“What now...?” He asked uncertain.

“Kiss me Harry.” Severus whispered softly tilting Harry’s head towards him and Harry happily obliged.

When they lips met, he wind around them became even stronger and suddenly they found themselves in a hurricane of the swirling gold and silver strings of pure, blinding magic. The wind was powerful but Harry wasn’t even slightly afraid as Severus was there with him, his warm lips caressing him softly, his arms holding them together firmly, not ever letting go of him.

The wind vanished as suddenly as it came. They broke the kiss and looked around. The room looked as if nothing had happened.

Harry however knew they’d changed everything. Severus was beaming at him as he leaned slightly back and raised a hand in front of his eyes, examining it. His silvery strings of magic became stronger and thicker while other golden cords, thin as hairbreadth, were twirling around the silver ones. Harry looked at his own hand and saw that it was the same, only in his case his golden strings were surrounded with the continuously whirling platinum ones.

Severus reached for his wand on the nightstand, and performed a simple levitating spell. His wand emitted the same kind of cords however in light purple colour that was interlaced with his silver and gold.

“Fascinating.” He murmured looking at the single purple string that came from his chest. The same purple colouring appeared at the end of Harry’s fingers however he wasn’t making any magic.

“Uhm... Severus?” Harry asked hesitantly. “Are we going to glow like this all the time we are in the same room? Because that would raise some interesting questions I think.”

Severus laughed and Harry was pleased to see that the web of magic around them seemed to shine brighter and swirled faster for a second.

“I doubt it. I think we can only see this now because the bonding is not finished yet.”

“Not finished yet?” Harry asked. “What else do we have to do to finish it?” He said not completely able to repress a wicked smile.

Severus laughed again (and the web shined brighter for a second) but shook his head.

“Nothing. You see how your magic is swirling around mine?” he asked holding up his hand again. “They are connecting. Right now, I mean. It’s a process. Your magic streams through mine like a river and cleans it. You see those black strings?” Severus pointed out a bundle of cords Harry hadn’t even noticed so far. “That is Dark Magic. Your magic is still gold because you have never cast Dark Magic. I however have done it several times, hence the black cords and the silvery colour of my magic. Dark Magic, you see, is like a disease, it infects your magic. I imagine if we could map out Voldemort’s, it would completely consist of black strings and dark light.”

Severus leaned back and pulled Harry over him before continuing.

“If you look closely here,” he said, pointing at a black lace, “you can see how your magic heals mine. It spins around the sick cord and cleans it. Amazing.” Severus whispered in awe. “No other kind of magic can do this, you understand. For a person like Voldemort this would mean nothing. But for me Harry, this is like redemption.”

They lay quiet for a few minutes watching as their magic spun calmly around them.

“You are not without benefits, either.” Severus said suddenly.

“I’m with you,” Harry said. “I don't need anything else.”

“This magic doesn’t work like that, Harry. It’s based on equivalent exchange.” Severus smiled. “Have you seen how fractions of the levitation spell showed up in your magic? No matter how far away we are, our magic will stay connected. Whatever magic I do it will show up on your web too and vice versa. However as your magic was pure when the bonding started and mine wasn’t, from now on no matter how many Dark spells you conjure, if you will ever, your magic will remain pure. My magic, you see, would fade sooner that let yours become soiled with Darkness. It is frankly beautiful if you think about it. As a human, I would rather die than let you die. It is an instinct everyone has who truly loves someone. However, we are not just humans; we are wizards. And what is the most important thing to a wizard, Harry?”

“Magic.” Harry said.

“Exactly. We are not sure yet about the true entity of Magic itself, but we know it does have an entity. The way it is bonding with someone else’s magic, the way the wand chooses its master; it all proves that there has to be some kind of power that is able to connect. This is the purest power on this world. Your magic is still untouched; it is pure, unsoiled and innocent. My magic would never let yours become soiled with the Darkness too, because that would mean your magic would lose its true potential, its perfection, its life. So the same way as I, a man in love, would die for you, my magic would die off sooner than let yours become impure. And that’s the deepest love a wizard can ever show; this bonding means, we are willing to sacrifice our magic, the very thing that makes us who we are, for the other. Even Voldemort would die than live forever without magic.”

“So you can lose your magic if I cast a dark curse on someone?” Harry asked looking into Severus’ eyes worriedly. This sounded very sweet and all but, he really didn’t want Severus to lose his only weapon because Harry did something stupid or maybe necessary.

“My magic is strong, Harry, one curse will not destroy it. If you were to go on a killing rampage now casting the Death Curse on everyone you come across, it still would take a couple of years. It would weaken me most likely though.”

“I don't want that.” Harry said sadly, nuzzling against Severus neck.

“Oh but that’s the beauty of it all. Between those moments, when you are not killing people you would still keep healing me, you see. That is why it would take that long. And as long as you keep healing my magic it would be very hard for anyone to make it fade. Oh the beauty of ancient magic.” Severus sighed kissing the top of Harry’s head.

Harry felt his mind dizzy from all the new information. The light and the magic strings were still visible around them, however they seemed slightly duller now as if they were close to completing the bonding. His eyes sealed tightly as he felt Severus cover them up with a blanket. He felt like he was so tired he could sleep through the whole weekend but then a thought occurred to him.

“Do you think we will shine like this during sex?” Harry smiled against the warm body next to his.

“Probably.” Severus said not opening his eyes.

“Can we try it out?” Harry asked, blinking up at Severus with heavy eyelids and a giddy smile.

“Idiot.” Severus laughed but pulled him closer. “We can test that theory later. Now, however, sleep.”

Chapter Text

Severus sat silently in his room with a glass of wine. He had a book in his hand with his pointing finger marking where he had been reading, but now it was lying on his thigh long forgotten. The room around him was chaotic. Books were scattered all around the soft rug in front of the fireplace, his desk was covered with newspapers and letters; however he did not notice any of that. Severus was staring at the quietly crackling fire not far from him, his mind entirely blank.

He missed Harry. He felt empty without the closeness of the other man.

The magical fire did not emit any heat so he was surprised to feel a warm, caressing air current brush up on his face. A beautiful white owl flew into his room through the open windows bringing some of the gentle summer air in with her.

“Hedwig.” Severus welcomed the bird who landed carefully on his knee. He smiled at Hedwig and she hooted back pecking at the fingers that caressed her. She held up a leg and Severus untied the letter she carried.

“You know where you can find food and water. Feel free to rest up a bit if you like.” Severus smiled and the owl hooted again and flew off to have some owl titbit after her long journey.

Severus held the letter between his fingers, caressing his own initials written by the so well-known hand.

The summer holidays started two weeks ago. He had barely seen Harry after the incident at the Ministry. Harry came to him after he talked to Albus about the prophecy and everything else. He expected the young man to be angry with him for causing the death of his parents. He expected Harry to yell and shout and he would have been ready to take it. But when Harry came to him that night, that was not what happened. Harry just stared at him with infinite weariness in his green eyes, then clutched onto Severus before he started crying. Severus led the other wizard in, and they sat down on the leather couch and he pulled Harry over himself in a tight embrace. They remained like that for the rest of night, Severus whispering soothing words to the man. The next time they had met was during the last feast in the Great Hall and then Harry returned to his aunt and uncle.

Merlin, how much he wanted Harry to stay with him, to spend his whole summer between Severus’ arms not with those foul creatures he had to call relatives. But that would mean confessing everything to Dumbledore and even then the chances were low. Pain slashed into his heart when he thought about what the boy had to live through now. Stricken by the devastating future that damned prophecy brought to him, all by himself, surrounded with people who did not appreciate him, never comforted him, only letters giving him the opportunity to talk about whatever was on his upset mind.

Severus pressed the seal to his lips and kissed it gently, knowing that was what Harry did before he tied it on Hedwig. He breathed in deeply, inhaling the smell of old parchment, and something else, Harry too.

Not a moment goes by that I am not thinking about you. I miss you with every breath I take and I am counting the hours until I can see you again.

With deepest love,

Your H. P.

His lips curled into a loving smile as he read the few lines many times over and over again. He grabbed a parchment and a quill and wrote his answer. Hedwig returned over his shoulders, combing through his long black hair and for a second it felt like Harry’s fingers.

Your absence weighs on my heart. I feel as though I cannot think, my mind is blank, like the night sky without the stars. I wish I could talk to you, hold you, feel you. I miss you more with every second we are forced to spend so far away from each other.

I hope this information will, however ease slightly the pain you feel; I have news about your godfather. Black regained his consciousness a few hours ago. He immediately asked about your wellbeing, and when Lupin confirmed that you are well, he fell in a healing slumber. He will be all right soon. Poppy will take great care of him and Lupin watches over his dreams.

I love you,

SS

Severus folded the letter then sealed it before kissing it on the green wax. He looked at Hedwig and the bird squeaked and hopped in his lap looking up at him with bright yellow eyes.

“I know I ask a lot but can you make it back before midnight?” Severus asked the owl. “He needs to know this before he falls asleep. He will be relieved to hear about his godfather.”

Hedwig hooted again and took the letter in his beak. Severus stood up with her, walked to the window and the bird took off. He watched Hedwig turn into a little white dot in the sky before he turned back to the room.

He missed Harry.

He sat back down and closed his eyes. He didn’t know he fell asleep until he woke with a start, his wand already in his hand pointed towards the noise that awakened him. The light knock repeated again and Severus stood up to open the door. He kept his wand out even after he opened the door. The two hooded figures pushed their cloaks back at once.

“Severus, I need your help.” Narcissa Malfoy begged, shaking on his doorstep. Bellatrix Lestrange though, looked quite angry.

 

o.O.o

 

Hours later, a bright, bluish and transparent phoenix was in the middle of his room.

“Visit me Severus, we need to discuss a couple of things.” Albus’ gentle voice filled his room before the Patronus disappeared. Severus stepped into the fire.

The Headmaster sat behind his desk with a content smile on his lips. His fingers pressed together like a tent; one hand normal, the other black from the curse.

His time was ticking, Severus knew but they hardly ever spoke of that. Albus hardly ever mentioned what he asked of Severus when he learned that this curse would be fatal for him. For Severus however, not a day went by without thinking about what the old fool had asked of him. He still clearly remembered that fierce argument that happened between them on that fateful night. These new developments however seemed to change that.

“Draco will attempt to kill me. And you made an Unbreakable vow to help him and if he were to fail at his attempt, finish what he started.” Albus summarized Narcissa’s wish in a calm manner.

“Yes.” Severus affirmed.

“Thank you.” Dumbledore motioned towards a chair for Severus to sit. Severus felt restless so he just started walking up and down in the round office.

“I think,” Albus went on, “it is high time that I reveal to you what must be done. We cannot know when the young Malfoy will succeed, if ever, but we have to be ready.”

Severus still didn’t speak so Albus continued. “If everything goes according to plan, there will be a moment when Voldemort will put up high security measures around Nagini.”

“You think she’s the last Horcrux?” Severus asked suddenly.

“No, I in fact know, she’s not the very last one.” Albus replied. “There is one thing I need you to tell Harry when this time comes. I probably won’t be around and there is no one else I trust more. It has to be you, Severus.”

“Why can’t you tell him now?” Severus enquired. He didn’t want to keep any secrets from Harry.

“The boy is not ready yet.” Albus responded calmly.

“He’s not a boy anymore, Albus, you know that. And he is ready for whatever you need to tell him.”

“He cannot know this yet. Promise me Severus, promise me you will not say a word to Harry before the time comes.” Albus demanded, watching Severus closely.

“I... I promise.” Severus hesitated.

“After Voldemort killed Lily and James his soul was already too weak. Killing another human, moreover an innocent child, shattered it and he created a seventh Horcrux.”

As Albus spoke, Severus stopped walking and looked at the man, afraid of what his next words would be. His fingers involuntarily gripped the back of the chair for support.

“After he attempted to kill Harry and the Killing Course rebounded from the boy, a part of his soul detached itself, and immediately looked for a host. It connected with Harry.”

“No...” Severus groaned and he felt his legs becoming weaker so he let his numb body fall into the chair opposite the Headmaster.

“Yes. That is why Harry speaks Parseltongue, that is the reason for the connection between their minds and why Harry is able to sometimes see through Voldemort’s eyes; it is because they are connected by Voldemort’s soul.”

“Albus, are you telling me, that a part of The Dark Lord’s soul is in Harry?” Severus asked with shaking voice dreadful feeling surrounding his heart. If this was true, Harry would never survive that.

“Exactly.”

“Oh Merlin...” Severus gasped, breathing deeply calming himself covering his eyes with his palms. How could this happen? How?!

“Voldemort can never die, as long as Harry is alive. He must-“

“NO!” Severus shouted and he was standing again. He didn’t know when he did it but his wand was in his hand pointing at Albus. He put it back in his cloak but it was too late. When he looked at the bright blue eyes, they were studying him intently.

“Is there something I should know about, Severus?” Albus inquired with a raised eyebrow. His voice was still calm but Severus knew this calmness. It was the calmness in the eye of a hurricane.

“There has to be another way.” Severus demanded avoiding the answer but not Albus’ glance. He knew his own eyes were pleading.

“He has to die, Severus.” Albus stated mercilessly. “That’s the only way.”

“No, that’s impossible.” Severus shook his head, shaking. “You kept him alive all this time, just to sacrifice him at the right time?” He shouted pointing a finger at Albus. “What kind of man are you?” He went on yelling and noticed with a sudden shock that he was emitting bright light. Panicked, he backed to the wall, but the light stuck with him. He looked up at Dumbledore bewildered. This had never happened before, not when he wasn’t around Harry.

“Severus, what have you done?” Dumbledore asked alarmed, rising from his chair.

“I’ve... we’ve...” Severus stuttered but he couldn't say a word. He was in shock. He would lose Harry; the thought of that sent wild tremors through his whole body. Cold shivers shook him as he clutched into his robe over his heart that was about to stop or jump out.

“Harry has to die, you know that too.” Dumbledore claimed cautiously, stepping closer to him slowly as if he could blow up like a bubbling potion any minute. “That is the only way the Horcrux in him can be destroyed.”

“No.” Severus beseeched feeling disappointment, fear and anger burn in him. “I can't let that happen. Albus, I can’t!” The light around him shined blindly, silver and gold cords were whipping towards Dumbledore.

“If I didn’t know any better, dear boy, I would say you have done something forbidden with the boy.” Dumbledore said and his voice carried something of a threat now.

Severus didn’t reply but he didn’t even need to. The light flashed up again and Severus was sure the Headmaster understood what that meant.

“What have you done, Severus?” Albus queried in a low and calm voice but Severus knew Albus was boiling with anger beneath the surface.

“We are bonded.” Severus admitted quietly but just acknowledging it sent a warm sensation through him. It was like Fawkes’ song only stronger, clearer, brighter.

“When did this happen?” Albus asked shocked.

“Months ago.” Severus sighed looking up.

“He is but a child!” Dumbledore bellowed his eyes flashing like lightning.

“You have been willing to sacrifice him for the greater good since he was a toddler,” Severus yelled back without hesitation. “And when he finds love, true love, he’s suddenly just a child?! You decide things for him year after year and all he gets is misery and pain! He decides for once about something meaningful and you are willing to take that away from him just because he is ‘too young’? All you give him is death; from me, at least he had some happiness before he needs to die.” Severus growled fiercely like a black panther.

Dumbledore eyed him for a while; his eyes took in the bright strings of magic swirling around Severus like a shield. Albus drew out his wand and pointed it at Severus. To Albus’ surprise Severus didn’t raise his own wand just stood there shaking wildly and looking miserably at the Headmaster.

Severus looked at the wand alarmed but there wasn’t any fear in his voice when he spoke up next.

“Punish me, do whatever you want with me but do not expect me to regret what I have done. I will never apologize for loving Harry.” Severus stated quietly and felt another rush of warmness flood him.

Albus walked closer and touched his wand to the strings, which started pulsing from the contact.

“Oh...” Albus gasped and his eyes closed when the magic lashed towards him again but this time not in a threatening manner. It was more of a caress, an arm inviting him to recognize.

“Albus... what is happening?” Severus asked when he realized the Headmaster wasn’t about to murder him. “It has never done this before. It has never come out when Harry was not there with me.”

“This is not ordinary magic, surely you realized that too, Severus.” Dumbledore stepped away from the strings and smiled. “It wants me to understand.”

“We are bonded through our magic that is all I know. Though I must confess I am not a specialist in this field Albus, I have never imagined...”

Dumbledore nodded.

“Calm down, Severus.” Albus said gently. “This bond would have never formed if you had even the slightest doubts about your love for Harry, if you would not throw away your life to save his or if you would not trust him even with your magic. My boy, that is utmost love, and I respect it. Especially coming from you.”

“But... but are you not going to curse me, kill me, expel me, or... or send me to Azkaban? What I’ve done is still...” Severus started but he couldn't finish the sentence. “I don't understand...”

“Do not think that the idea has not occurred.” Albus frowned. “However, I love Harry like my own grandson; I would never eliminate his only chance of true happiness. Even if I personally believe, it presented itself way too early. And about you, dear boy,” Dumbledore sighed, “I always wanted for you to find happiness regardless of your duties for me. I hoped one day, when Voldemort is ended, I will see you truly happy. I know now that I will not live to see that day, but I am glad that at least I lived long enough to see the man I love like the son to find his true partner.” Albus said looking at Severus in the eyes. Severus could sense that something was off but he did not know what yet. He was surprised by the words nonetheless.

“I was not expecting this.” Severus reacted honestly.

“Neither was I, my boy, neither was I.” Dumbledore sighed heavily again. “This definitely changes the rules, Severus. You should have told me.”

Severus nodded mutely.

“You are bonded and I know you love Harry with the deepest of love that has ever existed. You would die before you let Harry sacrifice himself. However, he needs to die by Voldemort’s hand, if we want to end this war.”

Severus didn’t say a word. Something bad was coming he knew it. He knew it just by looking at the blue eyes that were wet with sadness and remorse.

“Severus, you have to forget each other.” Albus uttered quietly.

“No...” Severus moaned falling to his knees. “That can’t be... Impossible.” He couldn't breathe, the air couldn't force its way through his throat to his lungs. He saw stars and felt dizzy. He would faint, just a few more seconds and the numb blackness would take over. Oh, how much he wanted that.

“I’m sorry, Severus.” A warm hand caressed his back and he coughed a few times. The air pressed through finally and it burnt his lungs like fire.

“You can't do this to us. To him! To me...” Severus sobbed tearlessly.

“As long as you remember your love for him, you would do anything to save him. He needs to die, this is our only chance.” Albus explained, calmly caressing him.

“How could I forget him, Albus? I love him.” Severus gripped the old man’s cloak. “And how could it help, the bond is already there. Even if I forget him... But how could I?” Severus shuddered. The thought itself hurt him much; the pain was a million times worse than any Crucio he ever received.

“I can help you with that, Severus. I can make you forget him.” Albus whispered, kneeling next to him. “Your bond, it is special. And I am afraid not even you realize how special it is.”

“I do, Albus, I do.” Severus cried. “Since it happened I feel like I was reborn. But forgetting him, Albus, what good would it do? What good would it do?”

“Your bond feeds on your love. These kinds of bonds are very rare Severus, one in every millennia. Bonds are usually fated by a Higher Power. In these cases people are born to be with each other and Destiny helps them to find the other no matter what. Your love, and this amazes me the most, is purely coincidental. You are just two people who fell in love, however impossible that sounds, given the circumstances. Moreover, your love is so strong that it affects your magic. Your magic bonded and now you have created a line through time and space. With this magic, you tied yourself to Harry’s soul and he to yours. By your magic, you two are bonded through time forever. Not just in this life, but in the next as well, you understand. You two created a Predestined Bond.”

Severus nodded with his heart drumming in his chest.

“If your love fades, the bond will be weaker; if your love dies out, the bond will cease to exist, not just in this time but in the next as well. You have a chance to be together for an eternity, to be reborn together and fall in love with each other life after life as long as you can maintain that special connection. You see now, what I meant by special?”

Severus was speechless as he watched Albus speak in a gentle voice. A part of him admired this love between him and the young man, Severus knew neither of them was aware of these factors when the bonding happened. Another part of him, the dark one that was selfish and furious right now screamed in his mind, fighting against Dumbledore’s words. If their love was indeed so special, how could Dumbledore separate them? A special love like this and they have to forget about it? How bloody unjust that was! His selfish side didn’t care about their next life, he didn’t care at all what would happen after he died, he just wanted to be with Harry right now, in this life, as Severus Snape and Harry Potter, not as whoever he might be in his next existence. His selfish side tore against his chains and screamed again, viciously like an animal but Severus silenced him. Selfishness was something he could never immerse in. Not in this life, anyway.

“As long as you two are together, your power will over-shine anyone’s, even mine.”Albus went on. “You will protect Harry through your magic, as long as you love him, your magic would help him in case he is under attack. But he needs to die, Severus, in order to defeat Voldemort in the end. The only way for that to happen, in case you continue to love him, is for you to die too. However, your death would ruin him; devastate him for a life. In the meantime however, over the years his magic will cure you Severus, it is going to give you redemption.” Albus said with a touch of smile on his lips.

“Over the years? Albus, he’s going to die who knows how soon!” Severus shouted, his hands tightly clasped into a fist as he struggled to breathe properly.

“Not necessary.” The Headmaster’s piercing blue eyes met his endless black ones.

“But you... you just said...” Severus whispered with a flicker of hope in his voice. It was like a candle in an endless dark but there was still some light guiding him towards Harry in this life. His selfish side ceased his struggle and listened too. Maybe, maybe there was a chance for them.

“He will perhaps have a chance in surviving it with your bond binding him here, even unknown. He might not choose to cross.” Albus revealed.

“To cross? You mean...” Severus murmured.

“Yes, Severus, to die.” Albus clasped his shoulder. “If you do as I ask, there still will be a chance that in the future you two will find each other again. The bond will still be there, but as you will not love each other, it will be weak. As long as you both are alive, there is however, hope. And that is all you need, my boy.”

“But if you take all our memories...” Severus sighed and a bitter laugh broke out of him. “We will hate each other again. What hope is that?”

The sky blue eyes held his gaze as Dumbledore slowly stood up and said, “But Severus, did you not think you hated him right up to the point you first kissed him?” Dumbledore held out a hand for him.

Severus swept away the hand and stood up too. “Impossible.”

“There is a chance.” Albus asserted turning towards Fawkes.

Severus looked at the back of the old man and laughed bitterly again. “You destroy me.”

Dumbledore spun around and looked at Severus with utmost anger in his eyes. “I could save you.” He shouted. “This should not have happened, remember that Severus. The boy and you should have never happened. You have two choices as I see it; you can remember him and stay with him until he have to witness you murder me and then you can die protecting him, leaving him in a world that would drive him mad. He would be glad to die by Voldemort’s hand by that time” Albus lowered his voice.” Or you can accept my help and you can forget. Forget and wait. You have utmost trust in Harry do you not, Severus? Do you not trust him to fall in love with you again?”

“I trust him with everything but how can you tell what will happen while we are apart.” Severus groaned. “What if we never get a chance again to truly get to know each other? What if he won’t like what he finds?”

“That is a risk you have to take.” Albus nodded. “Your chances would be still better than if both of you lie dead.”

Severus looked around the room desperately, searching for something that could help him, tell him what to do. Nothing came to his aid and he smashed his hand into Dumbledore’s books with an agonizing cry. He felt like he needed to destroy, to break, to smash everything into pieces. What did he do to deserve a life like this? And what would happen with Harry? Could he survive Voldemort’s curse? Would they find a way back to each other? Would it even be the same? Severus smashed his hands against the books again and then drove his painfully throbbing fingers over his face and his hair.

“Give me some time. I.... I need to say goodbye to Harry.” Severus moaned in resignation.

“You have till next dawn, Severus. Make it count.”

Severus turned around and walked to the fireplace. Without a word, he stepped into the fire but then Albus spoke quietly behind him.

“I am sorry, Severus.”

“I know.” He murmured before he returned home.

The morning couldn't have come slower. He kept thinking what he would say to Harry but nothing seemed adequate to describe his feelings. Should he tell him everything? Including Dumbledore’s plan, his future, his past, Lily, everything? He would forget anyways, so no risk there; Albus’ master plan would be intact. But what if Harry wouldn’t like what he saw, what he needed to do? And what would Harry think about this plan? Forgetting each other?

How could he sacrifice the minutes he spent with Harry in his room, or in the classroom? To forget Harry’s gentle touch on his knee, when he was working and the other man stayed by his side quietly reading his book? To forget the reassuring calming words Harry whispered to him after he returned from Voldemort? To forget the soft fingers that cleaned his wounds, the caring magic that healed him? How could he forget the lean body under him, writhing with sweet pleasure? The body that warmed him night after night, the touch that made him shiver and burn with immense fire? Lips, soft to the touch but fierce and untamed? How could he forget all of that? Out of the question. Impossible. The thought itself not just ridiculous but hopeless and intolerable.

But Albus said he could help him forget and maybe, maybe he could forget memories, but what about his feelings? Severus was still sure he could never forget his feelings for Harry. That seemed unreal. How could he forget love? More importantly, this kind of love, which he had never felt before; so strong and pure. He would have to forget the sound of Harry’s laugh when they were together. He noticed long ago, it was different when Severus was there too, more cheerful and sometimes, when Severus was just a bystander nothing more, just a teacher crossing the Great Hall the laugh was teasing, tempting to be noticed. And he noticed it, without fail. He had to conceal the small smile that tugged at his own face; a reaction he wasn’t able to repress.

But not even just that. He would never be allowed to talk to Harry. Well, at least their conversions would never be this civil, interesting and enticing anymore but would return to bickering, sneering, angry hissing and murmured insults. He loved to listen to Harry when he talked about quidditch. It wasn’t  his words that Severus found so alluring but the way he talked, the way he opened up and explained not just with his mouth but with hands and body as well, gesturing and highlighting everything important. Severus never liked quidditch but somehow he found it fascinating when Harry lectured him about it.

The other thing he would miss, and he was even a bit bashful to admit this, was the undivided and fascinated attention Harry gave him when Severus was talking about potions just in general, outside their usual lessons. He realized the young man’s interest in the topic after Severus got upset about a journal he read. Harry asked what happened and Severus told him, just to humour him. He was sure Harry would just wave it away with his hands but he kept asking questions. Plain questions at first surely, but as Severus kept explaining, the questions became more complex, and Harry’s eyes shone with amazement. Severus was an intelligent man and it always made him proud when people became aware of his intelligence. And he couldn't help it, Harry’s flattering comments always made him feel secretly pleased. He would never admit to Harry how much this meant to him, however he was quite certain the young wizard knew exactly.

And now, when he finally felt like he knew every inch of Harry’s body, when his soul was an open book, when he finally learnt all the young man’s quirks and habits, when it seemed that Harry was finally able to identify and handle all his moods too, when they finally made it work, everything was on the verge of falling apart. Their memories of the precious time they spent together, the moments that made Severus strong enough to face Voldemort day after day now would be scattered around the universe, like grains of sand in a hurricane. How would he be able to stop the hurricane and gather all the tiny little particles when he wouldn’t even remember to look for them?

Severus rubbed his eyes then his face. With a desperate move, he drove his fingers through his hair and stood up. There were people he needed to take care of before he could meet with Harry. For one more time.

 

o.O.o

 

Mrs. Weasley couldn't hide the surprise from her kind, round face.

“Severus...” She stuttered shocked then shook herself. “Come in, my dear.” She stepped away from the kitchen door, the well-known warm smile was back on her lips once again. She motioned for Severus to step in, but the dark man shook his head.

“I must apologize for this early visit, Molly, however I need to speak to your youngest son and if I am indeed well informed, Miss Granger already arrived here yesterday. I need to talk to her as well.” Severus waved his hand towards the garden behind him. “I shall wait for both of them outside.” He said and turned around with a swift motion.

Severus couldn't imagine the shock the poor Weasley boy and Miss Granger would have to awake soon. Their so hated professor was waiting for them in the garden at seven in the morning. No one would like to wake up to that. Except maybe Harry. Severus let a faint smile show up on his lips but it vanished right away. Their last day together; how shall it be?

 Four feet rattled hurriedly through the high grass.

“What happened? What’s wrong?” Miss Granger’s voice reached him from several feet. “Is Harry okay?”

That disgusting bitter laugh again, almost inaudible, but Severus could hear it erupting from his own throat. Harry would be okay, soon; without the weight of love and memories.

“Yes, he’s fine. For now.” Severus turned around to face the two sleepy-headed children. No, he mused, these two were as much as adults as Harry. Should he tell them, explain to them, or simply raise his wand. Just a wave and they wouldn’t even remember him being here. They would think they were sleepwalking. However, Molly was still there, still shocked most likely.

“What’s going on?” Weasley asked hastily, and Severus felt it as an attack. “Something happened.”

“What makes you so sure?” Severus raised an eyebrow. He should just do it, obliviate both of them. Why was he hesitating? Was it because if he did it to these two, it would make it final? Once he took Weasley and Granger’s memories, there was no going back from that. The point of no return. Should he cross it?

“Permission to speak freely?” Ronald asked with an anxious smile.

Sure, why not. This would be the last occasion anyway, Severus thought. But he only grumbled, “Granted” aloud.

“You look like crap, Sir.”

Weasley got a hiss from Granger but only a glare from Severus. Was it so obvious that even Weasley saw it? If Granger had said it, Severus wouldn’t have been surprised, she was a know-it-all, very perceptive. But Weasley? He indeed must have looked terrible then. He sighed deeply and raised his wand. He should really get over with this as soon as possible.

To his surprise, he found himself face to face with two other wands.

“What have you done?” Weasley asked, anger flaring up in the boy- the man, Severus had to remind himself.

“What makes you think it was I, who had done something?” Severus spat resentfully.

“Is this about Harry?” This was Granger now, and her voice was almost... concerned.

“Yes.” Severus answered simply. The girl- young woman lowered her wand and forced Ronald’s hand down as well.

“What happened, is he alright?” She asked.

“Yes, as I said about a minute ago, he is perfectly fine. And he will be.” Severus replied trying to convince even himself.

“You are lying.” Weasley stated. “I know you are. If this is about Harry, just spit it out already. Sir.” He added after a moment.

“Sir,” Granger started hesitantly. “Is Harry in danger?”

“Isn’t he always?” Severus sneered and he could swear he heard a murmured ‘git’ coming from the general direction of Ronald Weasley.

“Shut it.” Severus growled at the other one who had at least the decency to blush. “I cannot go into details-“

“You will.” More haste words came from the redhead and Severus reached a point where he didn’t even care anymore. He just wanted to go to Harry.

“Mister Weasley will you please shut up and listen to me so I can finally get done with this and go?” Severus hissed. He waited for a nod then went on. “As I already mentioned, I cannot go into details but, and please do not interrupt me again, as it turns out, Albus has a plan about our victory over the Dark Lord. A plan, which concerns Harry as well. However, he cannot go through the plan as long as... we maintain our... relationship.” Severus had to gulp. It was one thing hearing it from Albus, it was another going through it in his own head and it was something entirely different voicing it to someone else. “Therefore... our relationship has to... end.” His heartbeat fastened and his hand started shaking. Could he even do it? Take Harry’s memory? It certainly did not look like it. He didn’t even look like he could do it with these two.

“What?!”

“Are you kidding me?!”

“This cannot be true!”

“You can't be serious!”

Severus honestly did not expect quite an uproar.

“There is more.” He went on and he was surprised to hear how cold his voice was. “No one can know about the previous existence of our affiliation, not even... Harry and myself.” If he expected silence, he was wrong again. Shouts and cries of demands for understanding and vivid, colourful insults came from the other two but he just kept speaking. “Harry’s memories about our connection will be erased and so will be anyone else’s who knew about this matter. Like the two of you.”

“You can't do that!”

“That’s just unfair!”

“You bloody git, how can you do this to Harry, he believed you! Loved you!”

“He would never agree to this!”

“How can you be so calm?! Does this mean nothing to you?!”

“ENOUGH!” Severus bellowed holding his wand so strongly it started spitting red sparks. Great, now he was losing control. Just the very thing he was missing from this otherwise so perfect day.

“I am here to take your memories. You cannot know of anything, your promise of silence is not enough anymore. That and only that is what I’m here for. So I would very much appreciate it if you were to shut your bloody mouths finally so that I can get over this!”

Severus would swear that the fist, which crashed into his cheekbone, came from nowhere. But he couldn't deny the collision as the pain that flared up in his face was pretty much evident, almost tangible. However, the blood that emerged and slowly streaked down his throbbing cheek was very much tangible.

“You bloody fucking git!” Came a wild cry and with that, the fist struck down again, now however it landed heavily on his jaw. There was blurred redness in his vision too this time. It helped identifying the owner of the fist, but Severus had to admit the sheer force in the arm should have made it obvious.

His wand was still in his hand but he didn’t move, not voluntarily anyway. He swayed for a moment, the second hit tipped his balance off slightly. His eyesight was still unfocused and the pain was burning. Oh he liked that. It was so much better than the numb emptiness he had felt since he came out of Albus’ office.

“No Ron! Stop!” That was Granger. Severus groaned disappointed. No Weasley, you shouldn’t listen to her, keep going, he thought desperately.

“Hermione, he’s-“ The red blur came at him again, two iron fists clasped into his robe and pushed him back with a forceful shove.

“No Ron, look at him!” Granger again. She was holding back Weasley by having both her arms around him. It was nearly not enough. Severus was almost sure it was the touch itself not its force that held Weasley back. “He loves Harry, this is as hard for him as it will be for Harry, even harder!” She cried. “He’s the one who has to take Harry’s memories, don't you see?”

Severus looked at her. The clever brown eyes shined with tears; it looked like someone understood.

“Hermione, let me go!” A frantic cry from an anxious friend, Severus understood that too.

“Oh Ron, please calm down! Look at him, this hurts him too!”

“Why isn’t he angry then? If we were in class, he would be giving out detentions, smashing doors, snapping at everyone! Why is he so clam now then? Why isn’t he shouting? Why isn’t he hitting back?”

“Because he knows there is no other way, right?” The questioning brown eyes looked at Severus and he nodded, swiping down the blood from his cheeks. “Because he’s over that part. He’s accepted what Dumbledore’s asked. You know it hurts him, Ron, just look at him, look in his eyes.” The brown gaze held his for one more second then Severus looked at Weasley. He let down his barriers and allowed the other man to see into him for the first time. Piercing, fuming blue eyes, darker than he remembered, penetrated him and he permitted them.

A moment later, the blue eyes widened in revelation and Severus averted his gaze.

“I’m sorry, Sir.” An apologetic whisper came from the other man. “I shouldn’t have... hit you and... said those awful things...”

Severus just nodded; admitting that he thought he deserved everything would be crossing a line.

“Do it.” Granger ordered. “Do it now.” She clasped Weasley’s hand and suddenly a cold wind of envy swept through Severus’ heart. ‘Unfair’, the word echoed in his mind but really, he should have been used to that by now.

“I’ll be gentle and very careful.” Severus promised looking at both of them for a second. Why was he so kind? He should just do it already.

“Will it hurt?” Weasley asked and Severus didn’t miss the worried glance he gave the girl.

“You won't feel anything. You are going to think I came here by Dumbledore’s order to tell you that Harry will be joining you in a couple of days. You might feel a light headache or drowsiness later today, don't fight it, just go and sleep.”

Two heads nodded at the same time.

“We’re ready.”

“Miss Granger, if you will.” Severus motioned for Hermione to step forward and raised his wand again. “Please relax. I will be careful.”

In five minutes, Severus watched the two students return to the house. He was alone again. Always alone.

 

o.O.o

 

Poppy, though she was a brilliant healer, sometimes was a pain in the ass, Severus thought.

“I need to talk to them. Not just Lupin, Black too. Yes, I know about his condition Poppy, I'm perfectly aware of it, he is drinking the serum I made for him after all. If you have anything against me being here go up to the Headmaster, he shall explain everything to you. I need to go now. Leave us alone.”

“Severus Snape, you are not to-“

“Order you around in your hospital wing, I know. Poppy, this is very important. Go now, please.”

The mediwitch gave one more despising look to Severus before she turned around and rushed out of the room murmuring insults under her nose. Severus hoped she was going to Dumbledore, he would hold her up as long as Severus needed to take care of these two.

He took one last deep sigh and flinched at the still slightly burning pain on his face. He braced himself for more punches and insults before he walked into the ward he knew Black was hospitalized in.

Lupin was sitting at the edge of Black’s bed, hand caressing the man’s leg. They were laughing happily and Severus felt yet another envious coil rush through him. Then the fact that Black was sitting up and laughing registered. His serum must be working better than he expected. On the other hand, maybe that was Lupin’s effect on the injured man.

“Morning.” He welcomed his two childhood enemies with a strict voice. They both looked up at him in sheer surprise.

“Snivellus, what brings you here?” Black barked with a smile.

That name, oh how much Severus hated that name. He better get this over with as soon as possible.

“I have news concerning your godson. You will be pleased to hear this, I assure you.” Severus spit as he walked to the end of the bed. Lupin sat next to Black on bed so he could look properly at Severus without breaking his neck.

“What happened, Severus?” He asked, furrowing his eyebrows.

“Dumbledore.” Severus said with a sigh. “He has a plan.” He was really getting sick of telling everyone. “Please let me tell you everything I know before you attack me with your numerous questions,” or fists, he added in his mind, “as I am sure you will have them.”

“Go on.” Black nodded leaning a bit forward, indicating he was listening. He looked better, Severus mused. The colour was back in his face, his dark eyes shined with life. Something, Severus was sure, his own eyes did not do anymore.

“When Voldemort tried to kill Harry, instead of killing him, he planted a part of his soul in Harry.” He was ready to be interrupted but nothing happened. The only motion that indicated that the other two heard him was Lupin grasping Black’s shoulder and a slight frown on Black’s face. “Dumbledore thinks the only way to kill Voldemort is for Harry to sacrifice himself. Voldemort has to kill him by his own hands, hence killing that piece of soul in Harry and... Harry as well. That could never happen as long as Harry and myself were to maintain our relationship.” Another frown from both men. “Harry and I, we became bonded several months ago. I would die for Harry and the bond gives me great power to protect him. Albus is sure that with the bond Voldemort would not be able to kill Harry without killing me first in the process. You might think that would not be any problem but Albus is also sure that my loss, however surprising that must be to you, would devastate Harry to a point that being killed by Voldemort’s hand would be a blessing for him. Albus also believes that there is another way, one that could save Harry’s life in the end.” Severus felt suddenly really weak. He swayed and had to sit down on the other bed right next to Black’s in order not to faint.

“We cannot remember the relationship.” He groaned. “Both of us and everyone else who had knowledge about the affiliation needs to be obliviated.” His hands fisted the clean white blanket beneath him. Why was this still so hard to say aloud?

“Why?” Black asked suddenly when Severus remained in silence for a while.

“Because the strength of the bond and hence my power to protect him is dependant of the strength of our feelings for each other. As long as I remember him I will want to protect him and the bond will give me power to do it. If we forget each other, the bond will be weak and Voldemort will be... able... to... kill him.” Severus let out a shaky sigh as he leaned on his knees and buried his face in his hands. He could not care anymore about showing weakness towards his childhood bullies, they wouldn’t remember anyways, then why spend energy on it, when he already felt like he could pass out any minute.

“Let me get this straight.” Black growled. “Voldemort has to kill Harry.”

Severus nodded slightly, his face still behind his fingers.

“In the far away future, when that happens, you would protect Harry until the very end, fighting side by side with him. After Voldemort would kill you, Harry would die too.”

Severus nodded again.

“Dumbledore doesn’t want that. What Dumbledore wants is to make you two forget each other. He wants you to became the git you always were, he wants Harry to live without his love, the one he apparently bonded with, until that faraway future comes and he dies anyway.”

“Dumbledore must love you very much Snape.” Black noted then coldly and Severus looked up slowly.

“What on earth makes you think that?” Severus sneered.

“It seems to me that the only difference between the two versions is that you survive. Harry dies either you remember each other or not. If you don't do anything you can have a happy, however secret, life together until that future day when you both die. If you do this, Harry dies without remembering how it feels to love and be loved. You may survive.”

“And you think-“ Severus hissed angrily in a voice so low it was barely audible, “that would be good for me how? I would be doomed to live a life where I could never, never, find love again. I would be alone for the rest of my life. If I am lucky, Dumbledore gives back my memories and I can realize my bonded mate is dead and I am the one who caused his death. A more likely scenario is however, that Albus will be long gone by then and I will never know that there was someone for me too. How on earth is that good for me, exactly Black? How on earth would that suggest that Dumbledore cares for me? All I feel now that I would rather have Voldemort torture me to death than have a life like that.”

“Then why do it?” Lupin asked and Severus buried his face in his palm again.

“According to Dumbledore, there is a small chance that because of the bond, no matter how weak it may be, Harry would not choose to cross to the other side as long as I am alive. It would pull him back unknowingly.” Severus murmured between his fingers and he knew his voice was filled with hopelessness and uncertainty.

“All is not lost, then. We need to trust Dumbledore.” Lupin advised in a tone that Severus was sure, was meant to be reassuring. He laughed bitterly.

Strong, comforting fingers grasped around his wrist.

“Severus...”

Severus snapped his head up just to find himself eye to eye with Black, who was still holding his hand. Something changed between the two men as their eyes connected. The dark, haunted eyes mirrored understanding, faith, sorrow and rue. The moment stretched and Severus found himself somehow forgiving Black and with that the other Marauders as well. He found this quite ironic, given that in a few hours neither of them would remember any of this.

“Don't you think this is quite an odd time to become suddenly friendly, Sirius?” Severus asked slowly eyeing the fingers around his wrist. He wasn’t looking at them irritably just surprised. Was he so tired that he didn’t even have enough strength to battle with his childhood nemesis?

“I am not suddenly friendly Severus, I’ve been friendly since I didn’t rip your throat out for... being intimate with Harry.” Black smirked.

Severus’ only answer was a raised eyebrow.

“He told me about you, Severus.” Sirius went on. “We kept writing to each other after Christmas, I was still quite concerned about this relationship but he... convinced me otherwise. The stuff that boy thinks of you...”

“What did he say?” Severus demanded stunned.

“Don't worry,” Sirius laughed. “He left out the... more personal details. But he did tell me that you turned his life upside down, in the best way of course. That he thinks you are the most brilliant and intelligent person he knew, Remus took that just slightly to his heart, by the way.” Severus looked at Lupin but he just smiled and shrugged. “He also told me that being with you made him happier than he ever was, he finally felt like he had a proper family and he wanted us to get along. He also told me that he thought we were asses for treating you the way we did. And I had to agree; we were complete assholes. He made me understand that he would never forgive me if I continued my hatred for you because we are both important for him.”

“Are you deliberately trying to make this even worse, even more painful?” Severus asked looking at Black then Lupin.

“You misunderstand us,” Lupin reacted quickly. “We are on your side, Severus. As long, as that side aligns with Harry’s of course. We want to see Harry happy, and for that you are the key.”

“Why are you doing this? You are asking me to forgive everything that happened in the past, so that we can become one big happy family for like what, fifteen hours. Why?” Severus stared at the men in front of him.

“I’m not asking you to forgive right away, just to consider the possibility. Severus why don't you trust Dumbledore that things might work out one day? This is still a better option than if both of you are dead.”

“Don't you understand?” Severus cried, tearing his hand from the strong grip. “Our love is coincidental, it all started because we were in the same corridor at the same moment at midnight and I pitied him for his bleeding hand. It wasn’t magic, it wasn’t destiny; how can you know that moment would repeat itself?”

“Snape, for Merlin’s sake, are you blind? That is the exact reason why it could work.” Black grabbed Severus’ arm again. “Because for Merlin knows what reason, that boy fell in love with you after you tormented him for nearly five years. He fell in love with your brilliance, with your sarcasm, with your secretive kindness and care. He is head over heels in love with you and mark my words because this will not leave my mouth ever again, he has desired you since way before you’ve ever even considered his existence, I’ll be damned if I know why. There is no reason why it can’t happen again.”

“I don't like the idea of placing our only chance of happiness in the hands of an old fool.” Severus spoke fiercely.

“You don't have to do that.” Black laughed. “You don't have to trust Dumbledore. Trust Harry. Have faith in my godson that he will soften that cold heart of yours all over again. He will do it, if he only has even the slightest chance.”

Severus sighed deeply and looked from one to the other.

“Honestly, your kindness freaks me out.” Severus murmured standing up.

The other two laughed.

“Do you have to obliviate us right now?” Remus asked and the smile disappeared from their face.

“Yes.” Severus said.

“Why so early? You could still have some time together.”

“Unfortunately I can’t go into much detail about that, but the only person right now who would be able to make me forget Harry is Dumbledore. The bond is too strong right now, even after I obliviate Harry, it still will be. Only Dumbledore is powerful enough to break through it, and he might... not be here for long.”

When he saw that Sirius and Remus were both about to ask questions he raised a hand. “Please, do not ask me. This secret is not mine to share it with you.”

“Alright, who do you want to start with?”

“It doesn’t matter.” Severus sighed.

“Alright. Start with me. You might need to stun me after that. It wouldn’t be nice to wake up and see you holding a wand at Sirius.”

”Understandable.” Severus nodded and Remus sat down on the other bed and lied back. Severus murmured the spell and a few minutes later Lupin was lying on the bed sleeping off the memory loss.

“My turn, I guess.” Sirius mumbled and stood up. “Listen Severus, if you ever remember this again and you have doubts about Harry’s feelings or... anything, just come to us, we can help.”

“You would?” Severus asked surprised.

“Of course. We want Harry happy and... honestly it’s time to do something nice for you too after all the crap we put you through. I know you don't need us.” Sirius added quickly before Severus could growl. “It’s just an offer, you might want to live with it if everything turns out the way we hope.”

“If I ever remember this offer, I... shall consider it.” Severus assented.

To his surprise, Sirius reached out his right hand. He took it and soon found himself in an awkward embrace.

“We are a family now, Severus, whether we will remember it in the next couple of years or not.” Black remarked softly. “If you need anything, just come to us.”

Severus nodded silently as he wasn’t sure the astonishment would let him speak. The next moment, Black let him out of the hug and looked Severus dead in the eye.

“Have faith in Harry, Severus. If anyone, my pup can make you fall for him all over again.” With that he sat back down on the bed. “After all, he does have the courage of Gryffindor and the cunning and ruse of Slytherin in him.” Black grinned and lied back, closing his eyes.

“Don't mess up my head, Severus.” Black murmured with a teasing smirk.

A hesitant but definitely evil smile appeared on Severus’ lips. “I wouldn’t dare, Sirius.”

 

o.O.o

 

Harry looked out the window enjoying the warm caress of the sun on his face. A bright and hot day was ahead of him. Though it was still early in the morning, he knew it just by looking at the fine, blue, cloudless sky that he couldn't hope for a bit of solace from the burning rays. He would go out of the house as soon as possible again, however as he wasn’t allowed to go anywhere now, he had to stay in the little garden. Walking around Little Whinging wasn’t an option anymore unfortunately, he knew Voldemort would be happy to kill him now no matter how many Muggles saw him do it. Harry was safe as long as he stayed at home, but staying inside the house was now unbearable. He needed fresh air and a bit of freedom from his relatives; the garden and the big green bushes provided both.

Hedwig hooted him goodnight and tucked her white head under her wing. Severus’ letter was right next to the cage on his desk. He had read it about a million times already, he could recall every word Severus wrote but he just couldn't help to feel the longing to hear those words being said aloud. But not just those words, Harry had to admit to himself, hearing anything from Severus would be great. And holding the man in his arms, would be even better.

He looked at the Daily Prophet on the ground. “The Chosen One” screamed the title, under that was a picture of him at the Ministry, bloody, confused, and shocked with Dumbledore right next to him, a weightless arm on his shoulder, steering him away from the destruction. The words of the prophecy echoed in his mind every day, every minute but he felt somehow calm about it now. At first, sure, it was a kick in the guts. However the more he thought about it, the more it became obvious to him that he knew this all along. From the first time he faced Voldemort, when he was just a shadow on Quirell’s head, he somehow suspected that there would be a time in the remote future that he would have to fight Voldemort and it could end with either him or Voldemort dying. The only thing that scared him still was how was he supposed to kill the Dark Lord, the second most powerful wizard of the century, when he was just an untrained student. He hoped Dumbledore would answer this question too, when they would meet again as soon as the school year started.

He turned around and walked out of his room. His Uncle was already at work, his Aunt was in the kitchen cooking and spying on the neighbours, Harry could hear her murmur something about disgusting new cars, and damnable loud children but he just shrugged and kept walking. Dudley was sitting in the living room, fat and stupid, just like always, dumbly staring at the television with huge eyes bulging out of his round head. The scene was perfect for a still life, Harry almost even named the picture when he realized he couldn't paint it.

Still musing on idea of a painted Dudley, he kept walking towards the front door in hope he could slip out before anyone could notice and then inquire about his plans. Not that he was up to something bad or anything, but he knew his relatives enough to know, that if he were to say that he needed some fresh air, Aunt Petunia would most likely call him a freak and send him back up in his room. Dudley never needed fresh air, and Dudley was the norm. However, Harry suspected that if he would say something that even Dudley did sometimes, Aunt Petunia would still send him up in his room, just to cross him somehow.

Polite but urging knocks came from the front door and Harry found himself frozen in the motion. Would his Aunt come and open the door or would Dudley get up and see who was standing outside? To his relief he heard his Aunt shouting.

“Dudley, sweetums, please go and open the door.” Harry repressed a grin at his Aunt’s blindness and ignorance. She already should have noticed that Dudley never opened the door, if Harry was in the house as well, unless it was Aunt Marge.

Harry didn’t have to wait more for Dudley’s loud grunting.

“Oi, freak! Go and open the door!”

Harry smiled at the predictability of life at Privet Drive. Nothing surprising ever happened here. He stepped to the door and opened it.

When he saw who was standing on the threshold, he was sure, he never in his life had felt so surprised, happy and unable to do anything other than stare at the dark man. Suddenly his two lives, the wizarding world and the Muggle world crashed against each other, which seemed to him frightening and exciting at the same moment.

“Good Morning, love.”

“Severus!” Harry exclaimed, a gleeful smile spreading on his lips.

“Well, are you inviting me in, or am I to kiss you on the threshold with your neighbours inspecting us?” Severus asked teasing, raising an eyebrow.

Harry laughed and stepped away from the door. At that moment, he felt so happy like never before. After two weeks, two long weeks he finally got to see Severus again. His heart felt light like a feather.

“Wha-“ was all he could utter, before soft lips pressed against his mouth. Gentle hands steered him back to the wall for the well-needed support as he could already feel his legs were trebling from the pleasure Severus’ presence caused in him. He stood on his tiptoes and wrapped his arms around the other man, pulling him closer. The door shut next to them and everything became a bit darker but Harry did not mind it. A wet tongue slid along the line of his lower lip and he couldn't help but moan as he opened his mouth and sucked on Severus’ tongue. Severus had a hand grasping Harry’s shirt over his hipbone and it tightened as their welcome kiss became slightly wilder. Teeth tore at Harry’s lips then the warm tongue sneaked in his mouth and lapped around his, then licked, tasting every inch in Harry’s mouth. Harry couldn't think at times when Severus kissed him like this, so deeply and ardently. Every neuron in his mind flared up by the so missed contact; the man’s fresh scent, the warmness of his body, the soft lips, the firmness of his touch, Harry was bathing in all of this and more. God he needed this.

Gasping for air, Severus leaned back slightly, his hot, wet breath ghosted over Harry’s swollen, red lips for a moment, then he put an arm around Harry’s waist and another around his neck. Burying his finger’s in Harry’s hair he pulled him even closer in a tight embrace and kissed his forehead. Harry clutched his hand in the black robe and slid his fingers in the soft black hair too, closing his eyes in relief.

“I missed you so much, Harry.” Severus whispered hotly against his skin.

Harry pulled him back down for a brief kiss then he murmured in the warm lips, “I missed you too. You have no idea how much.” Harry crossed his arms at Severus nape and rested his head in the crook of his neck. “However given that welcome, maybe you do know how much.” He breathed heavily. It felt so good to be home again.

“You do know we have an audience, right?” Severus asked and Harry heard the mirth in his smooth voice.

“Don't mind him,” Harry laughed, enjoying the embrace. “He’s not going to talk; I think we damaged him for a lifetime.”

Severus sniggered and Harry looked up to see the handsome face. A smile, happy and beaming tugged at the man’s swollen lips.

“I believe an introduction is in order.” Severus said with amusement, watching Dudley who was standing several feet from them gaping and with bulging eyes.

“Is he...” Severus hesitated before he asked carefully in a way that only Harry could hear him, “...mentally challenged?”

Harry laughed again. “Definitely. But not the way you think.”

His cousin was still unable to speak. His mouth moved up and down, but nothing came out of it, Harry was sure, not even air. The sight looked like watching a very big, very fat goldfish, or a puppet, without its puppeteer.

“Severus, this is my cousin Dudley Dursley. Dudley, this is Severus Snape, my erm... Professor?” Harry asked the last title, not sure it would be safe to say ‘lover’ or ‘partner’, however given that Dudley just saw them kiss in the hallway, he suspected it didn’t really matter what he said.

“You may introduce me however you like. He won't remember me being here.” Severus smiled down at him, seeing Harry’s puzzlement. “I will explain everything later.” He added when Harry raised a questioning eyebrow.

“Severus Snape, my Potions Professor, my lover, my partner, my life.” Harry listed happily all the titles that suddenly came to his mind, watching the stunned Dudley who still couldn't move. The situation was so unbelievable it amused him to no end. Severus at Privet Drive, kissing him, Dudley in shock; Harry just hoped Aunt Petunia would come and join them soon because he was sure she had some gaping to add. Harry couldn't even imagine how abnormal she must have thought homosexuality was. Therefore, the hilarity in watching her reaction was ensured.

“Is this the one who bullied you?” Severus asked slowly.

“Yeah.” Harry murmured.

Severus pulled his wand out with a graceful motion. That finally did the trick. Dudley raised one of his plump arms and pointed a chubby finger at Severus.

“You...ca...” He stammered then squeaked lightly.

Severus raised an eyebrow and looked at Harry for help.

“I think, what he’s trying to tell you, is that you can't use your wand here.” Harry translated with glee. No mortal told Severus Snape what to do, especially not some Dudley Dursley.

“Are you suggesting,” Severus deadpanned, his black wand pointing directly at Dudley’s stupid face, “that you forbid me to use magic here?” He asked slowly and when Dudley nodded timidly, Harry knew his cousin was an utter nutcase because no one in their right mind would nod at that question, not even a person who had never met Severus. Just the dark, cool edge in Severus’ voice should have been a profound warning for Dudley to turn around and run as fast as his fubsy legs could take him.

“I’m a Professor at Britain’s best Wizarding School. I am a highly trained Dueller, and I learned Magic from the two most powerful wizards of our age. I have the ability to kill you, make your body disappear and modify your parents’ mind so that no one will ever look for your decaying remains. Finally yet most importantly, I am the man who loves the person you tormented your whole childhood, I ask you one. More. Time: are you suggesting that you forbid me to use magic here?” Severus hissed in his most toxic voice and Harry tried really hard not to laugh out loud. The way Severus spoke reminded Harry to the most awful Potions lessons. It had been a while since he had the pleasure to hear this cold fuming tone, which was usually reserved just for him.

To Harry’s surprise, Dudley nodded again. Pale and shaking like a leaf, Dudley nodded.

Severus looked at Harry in absolute disbelief.

“He’s not brave you know. He’s just stupid.” Harry noted merrily.

“Stupidity must be punished. Do you agree, Mister Potter?” Severus asked looking back at Dudley, his wand and his arm gracefully reached out towards the boy.

“Absolutely.” Harry agreed and next there was a loud crack and Dudley disappeared.

“I do not tolerate bullies.” Severus sneered towards the ground and Harry realized Dudley did not disappeared, only took a smaller and slightly more appealing form than his previous body.

A small snail tried to hurriedly turn around and crawl away however, being a snail had some hindrance. Harry laughed loudly and gleefully, this was the best day in his life. He looked at Severus who smiled smugly and he pressed a loving kiss on his lips.

“This was great.” Harry admitted still chuckling.

“He deserved it.” Severus growled.

“You will turn him back before you go, right?” Harry asked, tugging Severus’ arm. He loved Dudley like this much more, but he didn’t want his cousin to live his whole life as a slimy snail.

“Maybe...” Severus shrugged.

Harry was about to ask Severus why he was here when he heard footsteps coming from direction of the kitchen.

“Oh...” He moaned, looking shyly up at Severus. “That’s going to be my Aunt. She must have heard the crack or something.”

Severus nodded and they could hear her squeals right away.

“What’s going on here, if you broke something again, god help me I will-“ Aunt Petunia looked up at their guest and instantly stopped speaking, moreover moving in general. She looked like she was seeing a ghost. She paled instantly and her mouth formed a surprised “Oh”.

“Petunia.” Severus welcomed her and this time Harry was astonished too. Since when was Severus on first name basis with his Aunt?

You!” Petunia shrieked. “You freak! What are you doing in my house?” She cried loudly.

“I came to take Harry away for a while. However I do have a few words to tell you, now that you mention it.”

“Wait, hold on!” Harry interrupted. “How...” He looked between his Aunt and Professor. “How do you know each other?”

“Your mother was my best friend when we were children, hence I know Petunia as well. I will tell you everything later today, I promise Harry.” Severus confessed looking at Harry with a warm glance. Harry simply stared at him. He couldn't do anything else because he was so surprised by Severus’ statement. His mother and him, best friends? Why did Severus keep that a secret all this time? What was going on? So many questions were buzzing in his head, he almost missed the dialogue in front of him.

“This is my house! Get out! Get out you freak!” Petunia spat like an angry, scrawny cat.

Harry was about to jump in front of his Aunt and start shouting when Severus put an arm out, stopping him and stepped right before Petunia.

“You dare call me a freak?” He hissed with pour venom in his voice. “What you have done to this man is unforgivable! To your own blood, Petunia! To. Your. Own. Blood! How dare you insult Lily’s memory by treating her son like this? How?!” Severus said in a threatening voice and he didn’t need his wand to be intimidating. Harry sensed the cold waves of angry magic leaving Severus’ tense body. His face was contorted into an angry mask, his voice slightly shaking with fury. “Lily was your sister and you dare treat her only son like a slave or a dog? Your only sister is dead and you are willing to push away your only blood relative just because he is just like his mother and capable of magic, the very thing you always envied from Lily? Oh yes, I know about that too. She told me everything. I know you called her a freak too, I know you were always envious about her powers! Is this your revenge? Treating Harry the way you did? Look at him, Petunia!” Severus said but Harry’s Aunt couldn't look into the green eyes.

“LOOK AT HIM!” Severus bellowed and it sounded frightening in the dim hallways. Harry knew Severus would never hurt Aunt Petunia but he still stepped closer to the man. He put a hand on Severus’ back and started caressing him through his black robes. It must have calmed Severus a bit, he started taking deep breaths.

Harry looked back at his Aunt who was watching him. Their eyes met for a moment but his Aunt averted her gaze right away.

“Yes,” Severus said quietly now. “Those are her eyes. How could you look at those eyes and treat him this badly? Is there no love left in you for your only sister? Did your jealousy consume all the good Lily saw in you? Merlin forgive me, I have done many regrettable things in my life, my hatred for James blinded me for long but even I could not loath the boy after a time. At least I needed to treat him the way I did so the killer of your sister never realizes my true feelings for him but you, Petunia! You were secluded from the Wizarding World, you could have given him the love he deserves or at least treat him like a nephew, like the son of your late sister. But you decided otherwise. You called him a freak, you behaved towards him as if he were just a filthy stray dog in your clean kitchen. You disgust me, Petunia. I despise you with all my heart.”

It looked as if Aunt Petunia finally regained her sharp tongue, she was about to open her mouth and say something to Severus, when he raised a hand.

“No. There is nothing you can say that would justify your behaviour towards Harry.” Severus sneered with revulsion then turned towards Harry and his voice immediately lightened. “Do you have your wand?”

“Yes.” Harry said.

“Please go outside and wait for me there. I need to take care of your Aunt and cousin.” Severus explained and Harry heard his Aunt’s fearful whine.

“You won't hurt them.” Harry said and it couldn't be misinterpreted as a question; it was a plain statement and he meant it. During all his years, he was treated like scum here, but that did not mean he wanted his relatives physically hurt or permanently jinxed.

“No, I will not.” Severus sighed deeply and Harry felt a ‘however they would deserve it’ at the end of the sentence. “I need to obliviate them too.”

Harry waved goodbye to his Aunt and walked out the door without another word. In a few minutes, Severus came out too. Harry looked at him expecting some sort of answers for questions he hadn’t even asked yet. But it seemed Severus understood what he meant.

“I obliviated your Aunt, they are not going to look for you until tomorrow morning, she thinks you are in your room and will stay there the rest of the day. She’s back in the kitchen and doesn’t remember anything. Your cousin is human again, without his memories of me, or being a snail, of course.” Severus clarified in a monotone voice.

“Can you finally tell me why you are here and apparently, where I am going?” Harry asked stepping closer to Severus. He didn’t want Mrs. Figg looking out the window and see them hugging however he really wanted to hold Severus even if just for a second.

“There is a very important matter we need to discuss. However before we could do that I need to go home to change my robes, and I have a high necessity for a shower. Then I would like to take you somewhere else. To a place we could talk undisturbed and in safety, that I can guarantee. I had a rough night, Harry and I feel like I cannot take another step without a shower.”

“Let’s do that, then.” Harry smiled softly. He could be patient. Now that he looked at Severus in the bright sunlight, he realized the man really looked tired as if he hadn’t had any sleep last night. “Just tell me this Severus, is everything all right?”

Severus held his hand and looked Harry dead in the eyes. Harry didn’t need to hear Severus’ answer to know, something was wrong.

“No, Harry.” Severus whispered, and Harry saw immense pain in the endless black eyes. “Everything is lost.”

 

o.O.o

 

When they arrived at Severus’ home in the next minute, Harry realized, he just apparated for the first time in his life. It was terrible; he felt as if someone twisted his entrails like an old rug and turned him inside-out just to kick him in the guts a couple of times and turn him back to normal. He was grasping into Severus more vehemently than necessary but he couldn't help it, he needed some extra stability.

“Are you alright?” Severus asked, before he cupped Harry’s face, his thumb sliding calmingly on Harry’s jaw.

When Harry took a few more shallow breaths then nodded reassuring, Severus turned and walked up to the door. He murmured probably a password and the door opened.

“Make yourself at home, I will be back in about ten minutes.” Severus said walking to a wall covered with books. He pulled out one and a door revealed itself and opened up. “Feel free to look around if you wish, you can find some fruit in the kitchen if you are hungry, along with coffee or tea.”

“Okay,” Harry murmured as Severus disappeared behind the bookcase. He walked around the room but he wasn’t hungry so he left the kitchen alone. He somehow felt he was invading someone’s privacy, even though he just got permission.

The room around him didn’t feel like Severus at all. It was more like Snape, the Git of the Dungeons, rather than the caring lover and brilliant mind Harry was familiar with. The whole place was rather dim and sad, messy too, and Harry was surprised about that, given how organized Severus’ personal chamber in Hogwarts was. The environment echoed a certain sorrow and coldness, just like Snape and Harry thought that maybe it was part of his role too. This kind of atmosphere certainly suited the Death Eater more but Harry knew there was more to the man than that and it was evident in his chambers at the school. That place was warmer and more human.

The fire danced vividly in the hearth, but it did not emit any warmness Harry realized as he walked closer. A photo caught his eyes on the sill, or rather two familiar green eyes and burning red hair. He gasped as he reached for the picture. A shy black haired boy was next to his mother, his nose already slightly hooked, his long raven hair flying into his face because of the autumn wind that blew between the frames. The girl smiled at the boy brightly and happily, Harry could almost hear her childlike chuckle but the boy was too shy to smile back. He just looked at her from under long black eyelashes, his eyes conveying admiration and love.

Realization struck Harry when he felt yet another twist in his stomach. He wasn’t feeling that bad because of the apparition, these were the effects of Severus’ earlier words.

“Everything is lost.” Harry murmured looking at his mother. He dreaded the conversation with Severus. Cold sweat streamed down his back just by thinking about it. They had been discovered. He only hoped not by Voldemort, however he suspected if that had been the case, Severus would not be alive anymore.

A warm body pressed against him from behind and slender fingers caressed his shoulders. Severus’ fresh, rain like scent flooded the room and Harry’s system too.

“Are you ready?” Severus asked him and suddenly Harry felt as if he was going to his execution. He let his body slump against Severus.

“I’m scared.” Harry breathed.

“Everything will be fine, Harry. I will protect you.” The man behind him whispered and then kissed the top of his head.

Harry turned around with a swift motion and buried his head into Severus’ chest, clasping firmly into his soft, white dress shirt. He breathed in the clean scent but this time it did not give him strength.

“I don't want to lose you.” Harry muttered into the fabric, fighting his tears. Soothing arms folded around him.

“I will be there for you, Harry. Always,” came the soft humming from above. “Shall we go now? This day, unfortunately, will not last forever. Our time together is finite and we still have a great deal to talk about.”

“I don't want to talk.” Harry muttered desperately. “I want to stay with you.”

“You will, Harry.”

 

o.O.o

 

His second apparition wasn’t any better but at that moment Harry was concerned about entirely different matters. However as he opened his eyes and took in his environment, for a split second, he managed to forget about the reason why they were here, wherever that ‘here’ might be.

They were standing at the top of a cliff. The weather seemed almost the same but it was much colder and the wind carried salty air from the vast blue sea that waved below in the gleaming sunshine. Seagulls squeaked sharply over them, sailing in the cloudless infinite sky. A white, shabby, ramshackle fence protected a piece of land from strangers, however Harry wasn’t sure whether there was even any other human being anywhere near them. There was a hut several feet from the railing, built majorly from stone and wood. A small uncared-for garden ran wildly in front of the cabin, but the whole area was covered with green grass and wild flowers. Grey smoke snaked out of the chimney and the sight filled Harry with a homey feeling.

“One of the Dumbledore Estates.” Severus explained ushering Harry closer. “Albus told me to use it several times during our friendship; however I never needed to take up the offer, up until now. It is highly protected, many charms and alarms were cast all around the estate before you arrived here. As we are bonded and I carry your magical imprint now, you can come and go freely, as well.”H

 

They walked through the jarring garden gate and Harry observed the huge porch, with the old hammock and two rocking chairs. They went up three stairs and Severus pulled out an old silvery key. Within a second, the door opened up and fresh smell of wood seeped out from the cabin.

“Are you hungry?” Severus asked him turning towards the kitchen.

Harry nodded absentmindedly and watched Severus’ retreating figure as he disappeared under an arch. The place looked like as if someone was expecting them, the fire roared and everything was spotless. Two long sofas surrounded the fireplace and warm, soft rugs covered the wooden floor. Paintings of the sea decorated the walls and Harry could swear he heard the rumbling water but maybe it leaked in from the outside, not out from the pictures.

“Come Harry,” Severus said gently somewhere behind him, putting down two plates on the dinner table. He brought freshly brewed tea in two chipped mugs then waited for Harry to sit down as well. He did and they ate their sandwiches in silence. Harry wasn’t sure how to bring up a serious topic like the one they were about to immerse in. Not to mention he was willing to procrastinate that conversation as long as possible.

When they were finished, Severus put their plates in the sink and refilled their mugs. He handed one to Harry, slithered his fingers around Harry’s free hand, and pulled him up from the chair. They went back to the porch mutely and hand in hand, then Severus sat down on the hammock. He motioned Harry to sit down as well, who reluctantly obeyed. He nestled against Severus’ chest, who immediately put a warm blanket that smelled of wild flowers around them to protect from the cold sea wind. A shaking hand drove into Harry’s hair, caressing him in a monotone but calming way. Harry held out a hand and Severus’ fingers entwined with his, while his right kept the soothing, stroking movement.

“Harry...” Severus started with a heavy sigh. The hammock started rocking slightly back and force. “Let me tell you a story. A story of a young Boy, who was raised by an abusive drunk and became attracted to the Dark Arts very early in his life.”

And then Severus talked and talked, and Harry listened quietly, without a word. He listened to the story of how said Boy met with a red haired girl, more beautiful than anyone can ever imagine, whose kindness was only surpassed by the brightness of her green eyes and the gleaming of her radiant smile. He talked about letters and an envious sister, and about schoolhouses, especially two of them. And then he mentioned another boy with messy black hair. He explained how the messy haired young man and his friends tormented the Boy and how others accepted him.

He also talked about power that was dark and fearsome and yet an inebriating opportunity for the Boy. He spoke about decisions that changed the Boy’s life forever. He mentioned marks and friends and victories but he also brought up betrayal, disappointment and pain. He referred to an overheard prophecy and the devastating future it brought upon the Boy, the red haired girl and her whole family.

By this time, silent tears streamed on Harry’s face but Severus didn’t stop. The Boy’s story was not even near its end.

He continued on with a white haired, long bearded wizard and a deal; allies changed, and a new era started for the Boy. He talked and talked about the Boy, who now lived in two worlds; one that did not accept him and another he did not want to belong. He also mentioned another boy again, messy haired too but with bright emerald eyes. He explained the Boy’s childish hatred towards the green-eyed one and then the growing hidden fondness. He spoke about how the fondness turned into attraction with time and how hard it was to fake hatred now. He talked more and more about the green-eyed young man who seemed to haunt the Boy’s life. He whispered “love” and explained how the Boy never imagined such happiness. Then he mentioned a bond; powerful and pure, the perfect protection. He described it in its endless reality and as if his imagination were to leak out the bond appeared with its gold and silver strings, emitting its bright light.

Severus stopped for a second, admiring the strings and the light and that calm moment itself.

Then he went on and spoke of a Dark Lord. He mentioned immortality, soul and murder. He talked about a diary and Harry liked the story less and less. But Severus talked about five more things. He talked of a ring and a curse. Then he mentioned Death the first time. He spoke of a blond boy, and how this blond boy stepped on the wrong path as well. He mentioned a vow, innocence and murder, and also... duties and a Greater Good. Harry was now sobbing.

Then he mentioned the seventh thing and Harry begged him to stop; to stop talking, to stop the story, to stop the world. But Severus continued. He talked about Death and Harry felt tears fall on his cheek and the smooth voice became hoarse. He talked about the bond and protection and he mentioned Death again, and now his voice was shaking. He spoke of victory but all Harry heard was loss. He spoke of sacrifice and Greater Good but Harry heard pain and misery.

Then he spoke of hope and once again, Harry listened.

He talked about memories that needed to be forgotten and bonds that needed to be weakened. And he also talked about a future that may never come. He spoke of people who had already forgotten and he mentioned the Boy and green-eyed young man, one last time too; they still needed to forget. Then he spoke of pain, despair, and hopelessness.

After that, it was just silence.

By the time, Severus finished talking his voice was harsh and his mouth was dry. Their mugs lay empty and forgotten on the floor. The sun was about to set, covering everything with an orange filter. During the day clouds appeared and now filled the sky, all of them bathing in the beauty that twilight brought. Bird squeals and cricket chirrs competed for their attention, and the sea gave a calming background to the battle. And yet, they were alone in this vast nothingness.

“Harry...” Severus started hesitantly and Harry looked up at the man he had grown to love so much during the past several months. The black eyes seemed to be empty now, instead of the comforting warmness they used to radiate. “Can you... Do you think, you could ever forgive me?” Severus asked him, his gruff voice was filled with concern.

“Forgive you?” Harry stared at him. “What... Severus, what the hell am I supposed to forgive you for? This isn’t your fault!” Harry shook his head vehemently. “Never think that you owe me an apology, Severus. I owe you my life. You saved me more times than I can even recall, you are the only reason Sirius is still alive. If you didn’t alert the whole Order, we all would have died there, not to mention brewing the medicine for him that helped him recover. If anyone, it should be me asking for forgiveness for making your life and your promise of protecting me so damn complicated.” Harry added ruefully.

“Harry, but the prophecy and-“

“No, Severus. This- this mess, it’s all Voldemort’s fault. We could all go round and round, blaming ourselves for everything that happened, but it is not our fault, it all comes down to Voldemort. I’m glad one day I will have to kill that bastard.” Harry growled angrily, punching into the hammock.

“Don't say that, Harry.” Severus sighed.

“But I am,” Harry retorted. “He’s the one who killed my parents, not you. And he’s the one who is trying to get us apart now.” Harry sat up suddenly and looked Severus in the eyes as he continued feverishly.  “I don't care if you have to take my memories. I love you and you better get ready because I’m going to meet you in the future and I’m going to make you fall for me. So you better watch that scrawny arse of yours during the next few years because if you die before we both remember again, I’m going to pull you back and kill you all over again, do you understand Severus Snape?” Harry exclaimed.

He was glad to see that a little glimmer returned to Severus’ dark eyes and for a second a tiny hint of mirth could be revealed as well.

“You hear me, Severus? You’re going to fall for me, or I die trying. Because you know what, I think we can make this happen. I don't care if I have to forget you even seven times, I know I would fall for you for the eighth time all over again. And I’m not going to rest until I make you mine. Forever.”

It all started off as small smile at the edge of the thin lips but then it grew and soon Severus was laughing, wholeheartedly, amazement shining in his endless black eyes and Harry was glad to hear his laugh again. Happiness made Severus look years younger.

“Your faith has always amazed me.” Severus beamed at Harry then he smirked. “Of course that fucking Gryffindor blood in you would never let you give up, would it?”

Harry shook his head as he moved onto Severus’ lap. “Never”, he whispered against curved lips. Their kiss was gentle and sweet; not ‘goodbye’ yet, more of a ‘thank you’. Then Harry leaned back and as he looked into the affectionately glimmering black eyes, an idea came to him.

“May I?” He asked Severus holding two hairbreadths between his fingers, pulling on them lightly as he indicated what he would like to do.

Severus raised his eyebrows in confusion but agreed and Harry pulled them out. Then he repeated with his own hair, two breadths again. He took one from each of them and held them tightly in his right hand. He concentrated strongly and suddenly the bond flared up and started swirling, while around his right hand it seemed it created a knot of silver and gold strings. A moment later, it died off and Harry took the other two hairbreadths in his right and repeated the magic. The light flashed up, everything was spinning and the knot of magic appeared again as well. When it all ended, Harry opened his hand and showed Severus what he had made.

Two rings were on Harry’s palm, one gold with silvery patterns all around it and the other white gold with golden lines.

“Exactly like our magic.” Severus noted with awe in his voice and Harry felt proud when he suddenly realized he just managed to impress Professor Severus Snape. “These are beautiful Harry.”

Harry however wasn’t done yet. He withdrew two threads from the blanket that was still warm from their bodies and took them in his left. He closed his eyes, furrowed his eyebrows and gave all his attentions to the threads. A second later, he was holding onto two silver chains. He stringed them over the rings and gave Severus the gold one with the white gold motives around it.

“Take this,” ordered Harry. “You will give it back to me when we meet again. I will hold on to yours. I won't remember what this is, but I would never discard something like this. So, here,” Harry held out the ring towards Severus, “take it, and remember me unconsciously.”

“Do you realize, what you just did,” Severus asked in a serious tone.

“Yeah, two chains for the rings. My ring wouldn’t fit around your finger. I don't want you-“

“No,” Severus interrupted with sneer. “The magic, I mean. You used wandless magic to create something. Even with a wand these, the rings and the chains, would have been near impossible and yet you just... managed it without even an effort. This is incredible.” Severus finished nonplussed.

“I’m sure it’s not that of a big thing,” Harry shook his head. “I’m sure you could do it too.”

“Harry, the core of your magic must be unbelievably powerful to do this, I could never-“

“It’s our magic now, isn’t it?” Harry interjected.

“What do you mean?”

“Well, didn’t Dumbledore say that with the bond we are more powerful? Both of us, I mean. There is no my magic and your magic anymore. It’s just...” Harry hesitated for a second, “our magic now.”

“Well, that sounds... plausible.” Severus admitted however still doubtful. “I must add though, I do not feel any difference in my magic. All my spells are working just the way they previously did.”

“Well, have you tried doing it wandless?” Harry asked.

“But I... I couldn't.” Severus faltered. “Wandless magic only happens when you are not in control of your emotions and hence your magic. I’m always in control.”

“Do these seem like uncontrolled emotions?” Harry asked holding up the rings by the chain.

“No. And that is exactly why I am... confused.” Severus confessed.

“Try it.” Harry suggested. “Just give it a try. Don't lose control. Just focus on whatever you want.”

Severus considered Harry for a second then his right hand closed around the two rings. He seemed to concentrate hard, his eyes were closed and his forehead wrinkled. Then blue light filtered through his enclosed fingers and his eyes popped open as he observed the reaction.

“Amazing...” He whispered astonished as he opened his palm.

At first, Harry didn’t realize what changed then he saw the two words engraved in both the rings.

“Never forget.” Harry smiled.

“Never forget.” Severus repeated. “I will be unable to rest until I figure out what I shall not forget. Ought to help me keep this in the front of my mind all the time.” Severus explained as he finally took the gold ring from Harry and pulled it over his head. Harry did the same then he looked at Severus. The man was observing his right hand, wondering.

He must have noticed Harry’s curious gaze because he spoke up quietly. “I haven’t done wandless magic since I was eleven,” he admitted. He placed his right over Harry’s chest as if interested what would happen.

Suddenly, Harry felt much colder and goose bumps showed all over his arms. He looked down on himself and was surprised to notice that he was half-naked.

“Oh...” Severus gasped surprised. “I apologize I wasn’t... it was just a stray idea.”

“It’s okay,” Harry laughed and didn’t fail to notice how the dark eyes suddenly turned lustful as they wandered on his bare skin. “I was about to ask you what you had planned for the rest of the day anyway.” Harry teased. “But now I know.”

“You see,” Severus started, his gaze examining Harry’s every reaction. “There is something else I must confess.”

Harry felt as if someone just dumped a pitcher of ice-cold water over him. He didn’t want to hear anymore about the frightful truth.

“There was a reason, why I brought you here today, to this exact place.” Severus sighed looking blindly at something behind Harry. It may have been the sea or a flower, or maybe even something only Severus could see. “This is where I always wanted to live after... after all these dreadful events would finally come to an end. When I would be free again. Live here alone and leave my dark past behind with everyone from that existence. Albus offered me the place a long time ago and even since then he regularly suggested that I move here during the summer. I refused always because I felt like moving here during these times would... contaminate this magnificent place. During these last couple of months however...” Severus hesitated for a second but then went on, “I played with the thought that when the Dark Lord is finally gone, I will retire here not alone but with someone else.” His gaze drifted back and settled on Harry’s emerald eyes that were wide from the realization.

“You want to move here... with me?” He asked astonished.

“I hoped that one day you would join me here. I understand that you probably would never wish for isolation...”

“Noo,” Harry protested. “Isolation is good. I don't need anyone sniffing around my home.”

“So you would-“

“Absolutely.” Harry replied instantly not even letting Severus finish the question. “This place is amazing, Severus. It’s beautiful and has a sort of peaceful feeling around it. I love it. I really do. But to be honest, I wouldn’t care where we lived as long as you were there with me.”

Severus did not reply but the tentative kiss he placed on Harry’s lips was more than revealing. A few more followed the first one, less tentative but more earnest and quite fervent too. Harry felt himself being lifted then they headed inside.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus dropped Harry’s leg when they reached the middle of the bedroom. He placed his hands on Harry’s hips, his thumb caressed the young man.

“The bedroom.” He announced as if this were just a tour around a house.

“Yeah...” Harry murmured absentminded, standing on tiptoes to kiss Severus again. “Marvellous...”

“Look around, you impatient brat.” Severus laughed lovingly, turning Harry away from himself. Harry was about to protest when his mind took in the surroundings and Severus heard his light gasp. Indeed the place was marvellous, Severus thought. And having Harry in the middle of the room, made it even better.

The bedroom was spacious, but this word barely describes the interior design. The heavy mahogany door was in the left corner, right next to it, was a fireplace, with books all around it, from the bottom to the top of the wall. The left wall seemed to be missing as it was covered with glass behind which was a huge balcony overlooking the back garden and giving an excellent view of the green cliffs and the dark sea. Then came the great mahogany bed with nightstands on both sides, equipped with small antique lamps for reading. The whole house was a mix of both Muggle and Wizard architecture and Severus found it pleasing, as he liked reading by lamp light rather than candle light.

Above the bed, there was a picture of Hogwarts. At this moment, it was night on the picture too, but Severus knew by now that the lighting changed regarding what time of the day it was. The right wall, once again, was covered with books too, some of them, Severus was sure, would catch Harry’s interest as well, given what kind of books the young wizard preferred when he was reading in Severus’ room.

“Oookay....” Harry drawled. “Can we get through this killing Voldemort thing fast so that I can move in as soon as possible?” He looked at Severus who smiled gently.

“I wish.”

“Can you imagine how it would feel to wake up next to each other every day as the warm sea breeze and the bright sunshine caresses our bare backs?” Harry asked looking around the place one more time.

“I can.” Severus sighed and he could note the sadness in his own voice.

Harry snapped his gaze back at Severus right away. “Did you?” He asked quietly stepping closer. “Imagine it, I mean.”

“Several times,” Severus admitted with a sour smile.

Harry took his hand in his own and pulled him towards the bed that was covered with crispy seashell coloured sheets. Severus let himself be led, then after Harry knelt on the bed first, he followed the young man over the soft blanket and knelt in front of him. His hand rested on his lap as he observed Harry, curious what he had in mind.

“I don't want to be sad.” Harry whispered looking up at him. “I don't want to think this is our last day together, because I don't believe it’s true. Do you?” The young man asked.

“I...” Severus started then took a deep a breath. He had to be honest with Harry. “I don't. I want to believe that this is only temporary, I want to believe I will hold you in my arms again soon, but it is hard. I know The Dark Lord and to be brutally honest I have never truly expected to survive this war. And even if I do, what future awaits me, as the murdered of Albus Dumbledore?”

“If I survive, I can help.” Harry offered. “If Dumbledore’s plan goes well, and we survive you will have me on your side, I promise you. Before Dumbledore takes your memories about us, tell him to order you to tell me everything before the war ends. If he’s not alive I can stand up for you. Explain to him that it’s important that I know everything about you before the war ends.”

“I would never-“

“You would,” Harry interrupted him with a smile. “For the Greater Good, you would. If Dumbledore tells you that the only way I would trust you is to know all of this, but I need to trust you to finish off Voldemort than yes, you would tell me again about my mom and everything else. I will believe you. And then I can help you, I can protect you from the others. I can clear your name. They better not go against The Boy Who Just Killed Voldemort.” Harry grinned.

“What makes you so sure you would believe me. You cannot know what world will come. If I already have killed Albus, how could you trust me?”

“I always wanted to believe you, Severus. I never actually hated you, you know that right? I only reacted to your hatred because I didn't understand it. But I have admired you for years now. I just need proof.”

Severus thought about this for a second then nodded slightly. “I will talk to Albus.” He took Harry’s hands in his and caressed the young man with his thumbs. “However that is not all... What makes you think we could fall in love again? The bond will not help, neither will the universe. We will be alone, looking for something none of us remembers.”

“I was always... intrigued by you, Severus.” Harry admitted bashful. “Have you never wondered why I didn't freak out completely the first time you invited me into your quarters? I was scared yes, I was anxious and I didn't know what was happening. Then you healed my hand and instead of running away I became aroused and stayed where you wanted me. I was already attracted to you. Even if you change my memories, you can't change that as my attraction happened way before that night in the corridors.”

Severus let the words sink in and warm his heart but he tilted his head and looked Harry with a questioning gaze. “Why...?” The question broke out before he could even realize or stop it.

“Because I found you fascinating. Because you were the man, who hated me for no apparent reason and then saved my life. Because one minute you looked at me with hatred, and the next you studied me with interest. Because no matter how hard you tried to conceal it you cared for me, yet you pretended loathing. I didn't understand and the more I thought about it, about you, the more I was drawn towards you. Like a moth to the candle light. Then one moment I realized I’m not looking at you with simple dislike but with something else. I understood that all I wanted was for you to accept me, to know me, to realize who I was. From then on, the attraction was just a step away. It all started with your eyes last year, after I came back from the cemetery.”

Severus raised an eyebrow in surprise. Harry sat closer to him, their knees were touching now.

“When I came back, I was terrified and I was in shock. I wasn’t thinking straight and my usual barriers were torn apart. Your eyes held me together. You were like an anchor in the madness, cool and composed but your eyes were somehow different. I kept looking at you, searching for your gaze but you were busy. Your eyes were black but during those hours more human than I’ve ever seen them. Then Dumbledore told you to go to Voldemort and I noticed that you were scared.”

Harry stopped for a second and raised his hand up to caress Severus’ face with his pointing finger. Severus felt the touch on his forehead as it slid over his eyebrow then next to his eyes. He listened to Harry’s words silently, curious about why Harry would be interested in him as this fact still amazed him.

“It’s funny how you feeling scared had quite an effect on me, really...” Harry mumbled his gaze following his finger. “When I saw you scared, it dawned on me that you are just another human being. Before, you were above such mortal feelings but then I realized you are accessible. It’s stupid I know, but I found myself imagining you as not the dark teacher but someone else. How would you behave outside school? Have you ever loved? Was there someone who could see you for who you are? I recognized that the same way as for most of the people I was just The Boy Who Lived, for most of us you were Professor Severus Snape, The Git Of the Dungeons. But now I know you were more. During the summer, that one step towards actual attraction happened without me noticing it. One moment I became conscious that I was thinking about the taste of your lips.” Harry admitted and his finger went over the thicker lower lip, and then drew the line of thinner upper one. “Then the fantasies became more complex. It wasn’t just the touch of your lips or your fingers on my skin but your whole body pressed against mine. Would you be a caring lover or wild like your appearance suggested? If I kissed your jaw, would I feel your stubble?” Harry asked as he kissed Severus’ jaw. “I would,” He concluded. “If I trace the shell of your ear would you moan in pleasure?” He asked again and leaned to Severus ear. The professor felt the wet tongue slide on his ear and he heard his own involuntarily gasp. “You would.” Harry nodded leaning back. “I started my fifth year with millions of questions about you and an insatiable curiosity. If you take away my memory, the curiosity will return. And with that, my hunger for you will too.” Harry finished, his eyes nailed to Severus dry lips.

“Oh...” Severus responded quietly.

“Do you still think the future will be that dark?” Harry asked with a grin.

Severus let out a light chuckle before he answered, “I believe there is hope.” He whispered as he pulled Harry closer to kiss him.

“I know what you think about yourself, Severus,” Harry said quietly, “that you don't deserve happiness, and that no one could love you but you are wrong. You are an amazing person and let me tell you, quite desirable as well.” Harry breathed into the skin over the base of Severus neck.

Severus closed his eyes as he repeated, “Desirable?” Harry’s admission sent a fierce tremble down to his groin.

“Absolutely,” The younger man complied kissing his skin. “You think you are pale, but I think your skin is like marble. You detest your scars because you think they make you ugly. I think of them fondly as I trace them with my lips because they remind me of your bravery.” Harry murmured and his tongue slid over a white scar on Severus’ collarbone. “You think your eyes are dark. I know they are endless and beautiful like the starry sky. Your hair is not greasy but soft like silk,” he said and as if he wanted to prove his statement, Severus immediately felt the fingers tugging in his hair. “You hide behind your sarcasm ever since the world treated that Boy so unfairly but I know you Severus. You are clever and intelligent. You are sage but brave if it comes to that. You are perceptive and patient. You are caring and compassionate for those who deserve it. And I couldn't choose a better man to fall in love with.”

“Thank you, Harry.” Severus whispered and Harry raised his gaze.

“When do you have to do it?” Harry asked quietly.

“Not yet,” Severus brushed it aside as thinking about what he had to do before the Sun came up was too painful.

“Good.” Harry nodded with determination. “Because I want to feel you one more time.”

Severus smiled at the young man, and put a hand on his neck while pulling him slightly closer. “I would like to ask you to do something, Harry.” He started and noticed how his heartbeat quickened.

“What?” Harry queried surprised.

Severus inhaled deeply and looked Harry dead in the eyes. “Take me.” He murmured.

“Take you where?” Harry responded confused and Severus laughed.

“You idiot,” Severus smiled affectionately before he kissed Harry again. “I meant, this time I want you to fuck me.” He clarified slowly, his lips hovering an inch over Harry’s.

“Oh...” The younger gasped as the sentence got through his head. “Ooooh!” He repeated louder then snapped his eyes back at Severus. “Are you... I mean... god... oh... ahm...” He stared into the black eyes for a second while Severus was waiting patiently with a smirk playing over his mouth. “Oh fuck yes,” Harry growled finally, “With pleasure.” He moaned and grasped Severus’ hips while he kissed the man fervently.

Severus, not stopping the kiss, lied down on the bed and pulled Harry over himself too. He caressed the young man’s bare skin on his back, his fingers couldn't stop exploring the tensing muscles and protruding bones. Harry pushed his tongue inside his mouth and Severus almost moaned as the wet flesh licked around inside, teasing and tasting him.

He felt Harry’s hand on his shirt as it fumbled with the top buttons and when he finally had them undone the young man broke the kiss and trailed his sternum with his swollen lips. His mouth wandering on Severus’ skin, Harry unbuttoned the rest of the shirt and pushed it aside to reveal more of that scarred, marble chest.

Harry sat up on Severus’ groin and looked down on the exposed skin, a hand trailing the long marks of Severus’ dark past.

“You are beautiful.” Harry whispered his bright green eyes fixed on Severus’ body, his gaze conveying lust and hunger.

Severus felt his chest, his heart quiver wildly and his emotions were a mix of gratitude and deep pain. In just mere hours the reason of his life, the only thing that made him happy would be ripped forcefully from him. In what state would that leave him? Forgetting about Harry would be maybe a relief, as the knowledge that what he once had, had been taken from him maybe forever, would break him, destroy him. All the feelings, the love, the desire would cease to exist but at least it wouldn’t haunt him for there was nothing he could do to keep Harry by his side. Was it for the better? Or would it be better to grieve over the memory in sorrow but still remember the great moments? It wasn’t like he had a chance but he couldn't help thinking about how it would be. He would know for sure in a couple of hours, his agonized mind shouldn’t dwell on this when Harry was still here and with all his memories intact. But how could he not?

Harry was looking at him with tears in his beautiful emerald eyes. The revelation that paralyzed Severus got to him too, didn't it? Just a few more hours and this amazing relationship they were allowed to maintain, would be forcefully taken. Half-naked and aroused Harry was more sadder than Severus had ever seen him. Wet lines of the tears crossed the youthful face and Severus felt that the inevitable destruction was closer with every moment.

He shook himself and tried to rearrange his thoughts. That was it, wasn’t it? Their time together was limited, the inevitable was coming. They had two options. They could be swallowed into the dark pit of misery and grieve or they could immerse in the last few happy hours, enjoying each other.

Severus blinked his own tears away and sat up.

“I love you, Harry, and I always will.” Severus said in strong, clear voice. “Nothing will change that, do you hear me?”

Harry nodded, crying wordlessly. Severus slid an arm around Harry’s waist. With the back of his other hand, he caressed Harry’s cheeks and the line of his jaw then let his hand rest on Harry’s neck while he kissed the teardrops from the young face.

“I don't want to lose you...” Harry mumbled shaking, repressed sobs making his body tremble.

“You will not, Harry.” Severus stated. “I will be there for you always. Maybe we will not remember it, but I will be there and I will protect you, I will help you and I will love you. Always.” Severus murmured through soft kisses. He pressed his lips over Harry’s and kissed the young man with determination to make him forget about the dark future and force him to concentrate only on the present.

Severus sighed deeply, while caressing Harry’s soft hair. “Let me feel you, Harry. Please, Harry... I need to feel you.” He begged, his tongue driving over the edge of Harry’s swollen lower lip. Harry groaned loudly and captured Severus’ tongue with his mouth, sucking on it, kissing it vehemently, while his salty tears streamed from his eyes. Severus knew why Harry became this ardent all of a sudden, it wasn’t lust, just the desire to set his mind on something else, something better than his distressed thoughts, something that would help him through this dark night.

Severus shrugged out of his shirt and threw it on the ground. It wasn’t alone for long; pants, jeans, socks and shoes tagged along and landed on the untidy heap. Within a couple of minutes Severus was lying on the bed again, legs on each side of Harry, both of them wearing only underwear. And even that was about to disappear from Severus.

Harry had his pointing and middle finger hooked into Severus tight boxers, removing it from the man slowly and leisurely as if he had a lifetime to do it. Eyes closed, immersed in the pleasure of undressing his lover, Harry kissed every inch of skin he revealed. Licking a wet trail from Severus’ navel down towards the hard groin, he breathed in Severus’ musky scent, while his nose brushed against the dark hairs, and that motion tickled Severus.

Severus was grasping into the raven hair, enjoying the silky touch of it, while the raspy tongue moved on his lower half, licked his skin with eagerness, moving from hipbone to navel then to hipbone again, leaving behind the red signs of being marked as Harry’s. This was identification he was proud to wear, teeth marks as the sign of love and hickeys as the imprint of belonging.

Harry pushed his thighs apart, and Severus complied, glad to surrender to Harry’s will again. He tugged up his legs, providing Harry easier access. The young man drove his lips over Severus’ thigh and sucked on the soft skin. Severus’ hips rose up from the bed as Harry’s licks came closer to his bottom. Severus knew he was breathing loudly, and when Harry’s wet tongue slid between his arse cheeks, he gasped even louder while his breathing hitched. Two hands spreading his cheeks, Harry licked him all the way up, over his balls until he reached the base of his cock.

Severus’ forced his hand away from Harry’s hair before he could tear out a few locks. He grasped into the sheets instead, all ten fingers grabbed a fistful of the seashell coloured fabric, while his hips moved against Harry’s zealous tongue that kept up its ministration between Severus’ hole and the base of his cock.

The velvety flesh lapped around the puckered skin, leaving Severus boneless and hypersensitive. Harry drove the tip of his tongue inside Severus then moved in and out, before he sucked on the wrinkled skin.

“Harry...” Severus sighed lustfully, his cock pulsing with need now, eagerly waiting to be touched. He felt the younger’s gentle smile against his hole before the wicked tongue pressed inside again, twisting and twirling against sensitive skin.

The Gryffindor withdraw his tongue but before the disappointed moan could leave Severus’ dry lips, Harry took Severus’ balls into his mouth and sucked them, licked them with enthusiasm that made Severus moan with pleasure right away. Severus’ manhood twitched involuntarily and he pushed up his groin again, trying his best not to take his eyes away from Harry.

Harry pressed up Severus thighs with a firm grip, then spread them. Severus had to admit, Harry looked incredibly erotic between his legs, with green eyes that glimmered with hunger and desire, a small smirk on the red lips that shined with saliva, cheeks pink and flushed, while breathing heavily.

Then finally, Harry lowered his mouth over Severus’ hard manhood and placed a kiss on the red tip. Severus threw his head back, while his eyes closed firmly and he whimpered in the darkness. The next kiss landed on the corona, followed by light sucking that left Severus gasping for air. As Harry moved down, Severus’ fervent moans became louder and louder. Then Harry’s tongue sneaked out again and licked the base of his cock, then firmly pressing down it went back up and moved lusciously around the head, making Severus drip with precome and saliva.

When Harry grasped the bottom of his erect manhood, then took the tip into his mouth, Severus felt as if he passed out for a second. He thrust up, driving into the wet cavern of Harry’s eager mouth, and the young man took him in, sucking him in deeper and deeper.

“Merlin, Harry!” Severus cried loudly, hands pulling on the sheet.

Harry smirked around his cock and Severus could even feel the vibration of the sweet laugh he loved to hear so much. He groaned deeply, hips jerking up. Then Harry slipped Severus’ prick out of his mouth and spat on his palm to wet it and make it slide in the stiff erection smoother before he returned his attention to Severus’ hole.

With the strong fingers around his shaft and the swiftly moving wet tongue around his entrance, that jutted inside from time to time, Severus soon felt like he would be coming within moments. But of course Harry didn't let him yet. He stopped his fervent movements always just in time, causing Severus to writhe on the bed with frustration and lust.

Then suddenly a finger poked into him, while Harry’s tongue lapped at the rim and Severus arched away from the bed with a heated cry. Harry’s finger circled the edges carefully, before his mouth returned to pleasure Severus with more eager licks. Harry pressed his tongue against his entrance and pressed it in slowly, wriggling it up and down, then he pulled it out. He repeated the motion faster next time, driving his tongue deeper into Severus, and then out again, then back in, almost slamming his lips against the wrinkled skin around the rim. He was fucking Severus with his tongue and the thought was sending the older man near his orgasm. And then he realized that soon, it would be Harry’s cock in there.

“Merlin Harry, please...” Severus whimpered loudly. “Please...” He begged and he felt Harry’s lips move against his entrance, whether Harry was actually saying something or it was just an incantation, Severus would never find out. Suddenly he felt wetness oozing out of him, maybe Harry used a lubricating spell or simply it was just saliva but it felt wanton. A finger probed his entrance and this time it slipped in without any resistance while Severus pushed back vehemently against it, while he thrust his hard shaft into Harry’s firm grip.

“Mmm... yes... Severus, you have no idea how amazing you look...” Harry mumbled as his finger disappeared deeper into Severus, turning around and curving. “Now I see why you like to finger me so much, it’s a beautiful view. Merlin, I am getting so hard just watching you.” Harry groaned into Severus’ thigh, his eyes nailed to the sight of his finger shoving into Severus then pulling out slowly.

Severus hummed incomprehensive words, unable to think properly. His eyes shot wide open when Harry dug a second finger into him. He stretched the two fingers apart, then licked Severus’ entrance, his velvety tongue running over the rim and thrusting in, while the two fingers pulled out leisurely then Harry reversed the motion and pushed the slick fingers in while his tongue lapped against the sensitive skin. Severus almost screamed when Harry rammed his fingers against his prostate before his mouth returned around Severus’ weeping erection and sucked it in hotly.

“Look at me, Severus...” Harry ordered him and Severus’ black eyes snapped instantly at the young man. His green eyes were shining with need, the intense gaze holding Severus’ as he slowly took into his mouth his lover’s whole length, while his fingers stretched Severus’ entrance. The older man’s lean body jerked wildly on the messed up bed, feeling that all these sensations were just too much for him to handle for much longer, but he did not take off his eyes of his young lover.

The lubricious tongue slipped firmly over and over the soft head of Severus’ cock, when Harry added a third finger and even if there was pain Severus couldn't feel it, he was too lost in all the pleasure that attacked his body from all sides. He whined keenly, his fingers almost tearing a hole into the sheets he was grasping into desperately because of the fingers that continuously smashed against his prostate edging him between too much and not enough.

With a last slurping lick, Harry leaned away from his pulsing member, while also withdrawing his fingers. He kneeled up again in front of Severus, and placed the trembling legs on his both his sides. Harry slid his palm up and down over Severus thigh, trying to calm the heavily breathing man who was still watching Harry intently. Looking into the endless black eyes, Harry placed a soft kiss on Severus knee, then grazed it lightly with his teeth, waiting for the built up pleasure in Severus’ aroused body to subside slightly.

“Are you ready?” Harry asked between lazy kisses, not stopping his hands from caressing Severus.

Severus took one more unsteady breath before he nodded wordlessly, knowing precisely that he wouldn’t be able to speak. Harry gave him a reassuring smile and took his cock in his hand before mumbling another spell to lubricate his member. Severus was surprised to notice how hard and red Harry’s cock was already. It stood as proudly as Severus’ own even though no one had touched it yet. He reached out his hand, grasped his long fingers around Harry’s prick and jerked them around the rigid member, while pressing down his thumb into the glans. Harry thrust into his grip, his wet shaft sliding easily against Severus’ palm.

Severus let go of him after a few more tugs before Harry would come into his hand. Watching the younger man, he licked up the precome from his thumb. Harry moaned lightly at the sight and had to take a deep breath to steady himself. Then with one hand, he placed his wet cock to Severus entrance and drove his other hand around Severus thigh, placing one more kiss over the soft, white skin.

Harry pressed the tip of his shaft against Severus’ entrance and as he slid an inch inside and Severus groaned fervidly, the bond appeared around them again. Severus felt like the blindly shining strings of magic twirled around them too calmly as he felt himself burn with need while Harry was sliding into him inch by inch, filling Severus up with his gorgeous cock.

Severus quivered wildly as Harry’s hot member pressed against his inner walls deeper and deeper. Both of them were already panting fast because Severus was very tight around Harry’s manhood.

“Oh Merlin...” Harry breathed roughly. “I need to stop...”

“No...” Severus moaned avidly and he earned a hearty chuckle for his eagerness.

“Severus you don't know how you feel around me...” Harry mumbled apologetically, his whole body shivering with need.

“Oh yes, I do.” Severus croaked, his voice husky. He looked into the green eyes as he let a teasing smile tug at the side of his lips. “What do you imagine I feel when I am inside you? The heat of your tight body surrounding my sensitive cock. The keen shudders as I brush against your prostate. I could come the moment I breach through that first tight ring because you feel amazing around me, Harry. Always, from the very first moment I was inside you I loved it. Every second of it. My body and my mind are addicted to you, Harry, ever since that moment I first kissed you in that corridor in the school.” Severus murmured thrusting his groin against Harry.

Harry moved again and pressed fully into Severus with one fast shove. The slight pain was welcomed and they both gasped eagerly but then Harry pulled back an inch or so and started driving into Severus with small prods.

Severus couldn't close his eyes, the sight in front of him was too beautiful. In the darkness of the night, their bodies were illuminated by the bond’s soft gold and silver light. The gleaming threads entwined around him and Harry. The gentle magical currents the strands created washed through the younger man’s unruly hair, ruffling the mops of the black mane, making them flow in the calm air as if they were underwater.

Their joined bodies shined with sweat that reflected the eerie light and made it look as if it were their own skins that were emitting a bright glow and maybe, Severus contemplated through his hazy mind, it was indeed what was happening. Their frenzied magic was leaking out from every pore in their bodies, unable to be contained in the midst of their carnal activity.

The thought was gone when Harry switched into faster and more powerful thrusts, forcing Severus’ back to arch away from the moist bed sheet. Harry grasped Severus’ hips, steadying him for his ardent shoves and Severus grabbed Harry’s lower arm while pushing his groin against the young man’s wildly driving cock.

Severus let his nails slash into Harry’s soft skin as the sensation of Harry’s shaft moving in him became almost unbearable. He always knew bottoming could be pleasurable, he observed Harry’s satisfaction several times but he had never expected anything like this. Harry’s beautiful body over him, the sensation of being completely filled and stretched, the luscious cock driving in and out of him with fierce jerks, it was all incredibly amazing.

Suddenly Harry grasped the base of Severus cock with a firm grip. He leaned forward and his green eyes glinted in the silvery light around Severus’ body. Green eyes met the black gaze and Harry smirked for a second before his lips went around Severus’ wet shaft while his cock still moved inside Severus. Harry sucked on the rigid erection keenly and Severus’ shoulders rose from the bed before he slumped back down and thrust into Harry’s eager mouth.

“Oh Merlin, Harry!” Severus screamed jamming his hips up and down between passionately moving lips and wildly plunging cock. He grasped into Harry’s black hair with a hand. “Oh fuck!” He moaned desperately going mental from the fantastic feeling. Harry’s tongue pressed against the tip of his head and the younger man sucked him, making wanton slurping noises.

Harry drove a hand around his thigh and pulled it more to the side for deeper thrusts while he kept slamming into Severus arse with vigorous moves. Severus’ eager moans turned into cries, while the streams of magic pulsed around them, its rhythm matching Harry’s wild thrusts.

Severus was writhing on the bed, slamming his head from left to right in desperate need for release. He looked utterly debauched with his raven hair sticking to his sweaty face, his lower lips swollen and bleeding from the hard bites, cheeks red, black eyes shining brightly with lust and desire. This sight made Harry moan and the vibration sent Severus over the edge. He screamed in ecstasy shooting his seed into Harry’s mouth, who tried to swallow everything but the opalescent semen dripped out of his mouth as he still moved around Severus’ wildly jerking cock, sucking him as long as his orgasm lasted.

Severus’ magic blasted out of him, sending a warm and voluptuous pulse through their connected magic to Harry as well, who came the instance he felt Severus’ fervid orgasm over the link. As Harry shoved into him and his hot sperm spilled his insides, Severus felt as if he would come the second time; he was experiencing Harry’s climax like it would be his own.

The force of their connected orgasm shook Harry. He straightened up with a swift motion, his hips still involuntarily thrusting forward as he cried Severus’ name. He fell forward, right over Severus. The older man drove his hands lazily around Harry’s neck and shoulder, as he snuggled against the heavily breathing young man then let his mind descend into pleasant numbness.

 

o.O.o

 

When Severus finally woke up, he felt better rested than since the summer holiday had started. Harry was laying half way over Severus, his right arm under Severus’ neck, the left hand caressing the scarred chest, their legs entangled. The air was nice and warm in the room and it took a couple of minutes for Severus to realize that the fire was blazing out from the hearth, while the glass doors and windows were all wide open, letting in the mildly cold sea breeze.

Severus reached for his wand to clean themselves with a spell but realized it was unnecessary.

“I washed you with a rag.” Harry murmured sleepily next to him, a finger pointing to a bowl on the nightstand.

“How much did I sleep?” Severus asked surprised. He must have been pretty knocked out if he didn't wake up to Harry cleaning him.

“Not much,” Harry answered looking at him. “Half an hour maybe.”

“Oh... I see. I couldn't sleep last night.” Severus said apologetically.

“When do you-“ Harry started but Severus cut in.

“Not yet.” He whispered not letting Harry finish the question Severus dreaded so much.

Harry took a deep a breath and pulled his arm from under Severus before he rolled around facing the dark windows, with his back against the older man. For a second Severus thought Harry was angry with him but then the Gryffindor reached behind him, grasped Severus’ wrist and pulled the hand around him. Severus snuggled into Harry, their naked bodies were pressed firmly against each other. The cold wind sent shivers down Severus’ bare back, but Harry was warm and snug in the front.

Severus put an arm under Harry’s head after the young man removed his glasses and he kissed Harry’s temple.

“Aren’t you cold?” Severus inquired in a gentle voice.

“A bit...” Harry murmured and Severus conjured the blanket from beneath them and covered up the trembling man. He sighed heavily, breathing in Harry’s scent while he pulled the Gryffindor even closer and hed him tight. Their fingers lay entwined, two sets of hands on the pillow and another two pressed to Harry’s chest.

The strings of the bond faded away but Severus could feel his ring pulse hotly against his skin. He realized beneath his hand, Harry was holding onto the other ring, his fingers clasped tightly around the small silvery loop.

They lay silently, holding each other. There wasn’t anything else they could tell the other that would make this any easier or acceptable. Both knew how the other felt, both understood the empty numbness, the desperate need to not let go, and the painful nothingness in the pit of the stomach. However nothing could be done now when their last dawn was coming closer and closer.

As the moon descended, their feelings of hopelessness, their fears of the uncertainty and the grief and misery that came with loss rose high above anything else, diminishing all their precious memories into oblivion. Darkness fell around their hearts and wrapped them in a net of bitter sadness that would not fall apart until a brighter future arrived, that would set them free again. Free to remember, to live, to love again without consequences, without the need to lurk in dark corridors and steel alight kisses only when everyone looked away. A future, where the secrets of midnight would not be illicit acts that must be hidden, but beautiful fondness they chose to keep private. A future, which would surely bring its own demolitions and dangers, which would have its own secrets, sins and affinities, which would bring a fair amount of banter and which would be covered in tarnish until the aurora would bring light to it. But it would be theirs, a future they could share with each other.

As the first rays of the sun fought their ways through the thick black clouds over the sea, Severus placed a gentle kiss over Harry’s bare shoulder. He swallowed hard, before he uttered with trembling voice, “Now...”

Quietly they slipped out of bed and dressed each other. Last touches, last caresses, last kisses burned on their skins, leaving an invisible but everlasting mark. Neither of them cried anymore, they were empty and dry like a burnt down desolation.

Severus cupped Harry’s face in his palms as he pressed their foreheads together.

“I love you, Harry.” He whispered with tightly closed eyes as his last dim hopes of this day being just a nightmare vanished into thin air. “I love you more than anything else. You are the most important thing in my life and I will keep loving you even if the world stops. I would rather have Death as my companion than live a moment without you willingly. But you know, why we have to do this. This is not just about us. It pains me to say this but I cannot let you go without confessing this. I am weak but I am beyond caring now. If you wish it so,” Severus took a deep breath before he continued in a week tone, “we could leave this world behind together. We will run and never stop. We will never look back and we will have each other. Just a word, that is all I need.”

“I hoped you would say that.” Harry confessed quietly, burying his head in the crook of Severus neck. “I thought about it too. To just leave everything and run from the obligations and the pain.” He clutched into Severus shirt. “But I can't.”

Severus smiled, of course they couldn't. Decisions like this made Harry into the man he is now, into the man Severus fell in love with. “I know...” He did know this would be Harry’s answer the moment the question occurred to him.

“Don’t forget about me. Here...” Harry sighed as he pulled down Severus’ head and kissed his forehead. “...you might forget, you might not remember, but here...” he kissed Severus’ chest over his heart. “Please don't forget me here...”

 “I will not. Never.” Severus swore pulling Harry up for one last kiss, that Severus hoped would last forever or would break the curse of this day with its magic. But it was just a normal kiss, soft lips against soft lips, tender touch, sweet taste; the kind of kiss they shared a million times. However maybe the kiss’ magic lied in its ordinariness, because suddenly Severus felt like something had filled him with hope and warmness. But the moment was gone and he opened his eyes to realize it was only the bond that reappeared with the shining silver and gold cords.

“Sit down.” He nodded towards the bed and when Harry sat down, he kneeled before him. “I will take your memories about us and replace them with different ones. It will not be painful and I will step in your mind with utmost care. But there is a lot to change and therefore you will be weak when I’m done. Most likely you will pass out but I will take you home.”

“This is home,” Harry whimpered quietly, his hand sliding on Severus’ neck. “With you, here.”

Severus smiled, swallowing hard as he felt his heart clench painfully. “And I will be here, waiting for you in our home.”

“This is goodbye then?” Harry asked driving his hands around Severus and holding him in a tight embrace.

“I’m afraid so...” Severus sighed sadly. “At least for a while.”

“I’m sorry you have to do this.” Harry mumbled against his ear before he pulled back and looked into his eyes. “I love you, Severus.” Harry said clearly, looking into the endless gaze before he reached for Severus’ wand that lay on the nightstand and gave it to the man.

“I love you too, Harry.” Severus said softly, his voice broken. He placed his wand to Harry’s temple, his mouth going dry all of a sudden. The bond around them twisted furiously as if it would oppose to what was to come. Harry straightened up and nodded confidently. “Obliviate.” Severus whispered hoarsely.

The memories he had to take flooded his mind and Harry’s eyes closed slowly. From their first meeting in that dark corridor until this very last second with Harry sitting on the bed everything showed up and Severus removed all the sweet kisses, all the soft touches, all the kind words, the intriguing conversations, the affectionate moments, everything. Then he started filling up the gaping holes. The first night he didn't take Harry to his room to cure him but took points from him. Harry never flirted with him in the Great Hall but looked at him with hate. Terrible fights during Occlumency lessons, accusations and anger. Harry never came to him after his dream about Sirius but tried to solve it on his own. He changed the past in hope of creating a better future.

He broke the connection and Harry slumped forward. The strings faded again. Severus stood up and scooped Harry gently in his arms. He moved like a machine, left leg, right leg put nicely after each other but he was blind to his surroundings as he walked out of the house. The sun was coming up, bright light shined on the horizon and he nailed his gaze there to that far away point where the grey sky and the green grass merged.

Suddenly he felt the protective wards disappear. He stopped and pulled Harry closer to his body before he appareted back to Privet Drive. He carried Harry in his arms inside Number Four and up into his room without a single noise, where he placed Harry gently on the bed and covered him with a soft blanket. He kneeled down next to bed again and as he looked at the sleeping form in front of him, he wondered how could a love, which never happened be so painful.

He leaned over Harry and pulled away a few stray strands from the boy’s forehead. He placed a soft kiss over the lightning shaped scar. “You are loved, Harry.” He whispered as he pressed his head to Harry’s. “I will always love you, Harry. Always...”

He rose up from the ground and he suddenly became dizzy. He felt lost and broken, he felt like someone just cut out something vital from his body. Then his eyes wandered over the windows. He wasn’t surprised to see Albus outside.

“Severus...” Albus started when Severus arrived next to him on the dim street but Severus held up a hand, not letting him finish.

“Just do it. Just... take away this pain.” Severus begged, his dark eyes filled with silent pleading.

“If there is anything I can do...” Dumbledore said but his voice faded when the usually twinkling blue eyes met with the black ones.

“Don't take him away from me.” Severus answered simply.

“You know I have to. However, Severus, if you two are meant to be, which we know you are, you will find the way back to each other.”

Severus almost snorted. “Then just take my memories, Albus, before I go back inside, reverse everything and run away with him. Because I swear to Merlin I am very close to doing this, and it would be a decision I would never regret.”

Dumbledore considered him for a second, and then nodded. “We shall go back to the school then, my dear boy.”

Severus looked back at the house. “There is one thing.” He added suddenly before he walked up to Dumbledore with determined steps. His voice sounded low and threatening as he growled, “You will get him out of there within the next week.”

Albus nodded right away, “He will get a letter from me today.”

Severus turned away from the old man and watched the house where Harry Potter slept quietly. The sensation of emptiness returned but now he knew exactly what was missing.

He left his heart in the cottage by the sea.

 

o.O.o.

 

One Week Later...

Harry stepped out of the house with Albus Dumbledore on his heels. The night was dark and warm but he didn't mind it. He was very happy to leave his relatives already behind and join the Weasley’s merely three weeks after the school year had ended. Moreover, as it turned out, he would have extra lessons with Professor Dumbledore after the new semester started. He was very happy indeed.

“Harry.” Dumbledore spoke behind him. Harry turned around with a bright smile.

“Please grab into my hand, we must take a slight detour before I can drop you at the Weasley’s.” The professor said, reaching out a hand that seemed black and slightly scorched. Harry gasped loudly as he saw it.

“Professor, what-“ Harry started but Dumbledore raised his hand.

 “I will explain it later in detail, for now however let me only say that it was quite serious but Professor Snape took good care of me.” Dumbledore smiled.

“Oh... okay.” Harry smiled back surprised that Dumbledore didn't refuse to answer. Suddenly the professor’s expression changed, however.

“Is everything all right, Harry?” He asked with concern in his blue eyes.

“Sure,” Harry nodded honestly. He felt good, even excited to see the headmaster and be off from the Dursley’s so soon.

“Harry my dear boy... you are crying.” Dumbledore spoke softly.

“Oh, really?” Harry asked astonished as he reached to his face. He touched wetness and suddenly felt how the heavy teardrops run down his face. “I didn’t notice.” He shrugged. “Must be the wind...”

Chapter Text

The rain that morning arrived quietly but it turned all the louder during that short hour Harry was getting ready to face this important day. He showered quickly then brushed his teeth while staring mesmerized through the open window at the thunderstorm that seemed to come from nowhere. He had been awake for hours by now. His dreams were not the usual frenzied images of something, which could have been either his past lives or just void memories but rather a hazy mixture of sensations, reminiscences and frantic visions that had not allowed him a minute of peaceful sleep. All night he had turned on his bed waking from one delusion, relieved that it wasn’t reality, just to shift back into another, where he would be lost once again.

Thunder cracked all over London but Harry couldn't see the lightning. Its sound however, crept into every tiny crevice and resonated there for a second. Harry rinsed his mouth and spat the water into the sink before he walked back to the open bathroom window again. The fat, grey clouds covered the city like a suffocating blanket but the air tasted finally fresh and clean. Harry welcomed the rain, since the previous days had been scorching hot, making London almost inhabitable. The sun blazed all day, the asphalt and the glass all reflected the heat and no one had a chance of escaping it.

Harry often found himself wondering how it would be to spend these days between Hogwarts’ thick stonewalls, hidden from the burning rays, concealed from lurking glances and amazed gasps. He wished to go back to his school that he had called home for six years. He wished to help Her return to Her former glory; whatever She needed, Harry was ready to offer: magic, sweat and blood, all Hers. But She had to wait for Harry’s help for a couple more hours.

Harry had something important to attend to this morning for one last time. Something he worked hard for a month after he had finally arrived home, tired of hard work and constant spell casting on Hogwarts. But he wasn’t the only one who had put so much effort into this matter. Many others helped, people Harry wasn’t even expecting and they were all welcomed. This was after all, something very significant for Harry, something that he wanted more than anything else right now.

Weeks and weeks of preparation could go in vain on this rainy morning and Harry wouldn’t have the power to change it. Not this. However, if things went as they hoped, he could finally free a man completely.

And even this wouldn’t be enough to repay everything to the man, who owed his life to.

Harry wondered if he should take this sudden thunderstorm as premonitory sign that would show the outcome of this final day and all the relentless work behind it. Lighting slashed through the gloomy sky and it burnt a zigzagging line onto Harry’s retina that didn't go away even after a few blinks.

“Premonitory sign, my ass. You’re just a thunderstorm.” He growled to the heavily falling rain leaning out of the window. The next thunder snapped loudly and from closer. “Right?” He murmured then a bit more shyly. Then he shook his head and closed the window. He watched the people walk on the street below, clutching onto their umbrellas tightly. Why did this day have to be this gloomy?

 Why couldn't the day of the verdict be a sunny one, just like that morning, long months ago?

A heart-warming sensation hit him as he remembered back to that one sunny morning. The memories drifted back like clouds floating in the sky.

Harry was sitting on the demolished stairs of Hogwarts with his two best friends right next to him. Their silence was comfortable and peaceful even though the world around them seemed like it was going mad. Parents were mourning their children. Teachers and ministry officials were searching the ruins for the living, who were trapped or the dead, who were unable to scream for help anymore. Fred and George were carrying the lifeless bodies from the last battle into the Great Hall for easier identification, while Molly and Arthur were helping the injured people. Harry couldn't see the rest of the family but he knew they were safe somewhere, probably helping.

No words could describe the grief everyone suffered through in those moments. They should have felt victorious but the war had taken many casualties and Harry couldn't feel happiness, not even relief that it was over. Unknown faces came and put a hand on Harry’s shoulder, grasping it wordlessly then going away. Harry knew the three of them should be helping out too but he promised himself just one more minute before he had to deal with all the loss face to face. There was one thing he had to do, one body he had to collect but the thought itself paralysed him.

The memories that were not his own still swirled in his mind, relentlessly as if they were trying to descend into the river that was Harry’s remembrance but some of them would not find its place. But some settled in just fine, connecting and completing the final truth that Harry apprehended at last. The truth, that came too late in some aspects. The truth that roiled Harry now, made him uneasy and uncertain about so many events when others became clear as the sun.

The small pocket watch in his hand was warm. He couldn't look down at it as his hand was still covered in blood that wasn’t crimson anymore but brown. His blood, Harry thought and his fingers tightened around the magical device. He’d been holding onto it since he saw those memories, sometimes he tapped it with the Elder Wand until Hermione put a calming hand on his. He was too afraid to open it, to see the small hand on the word ‘Dead’. He studied the gold and silver watch and the six words that were engraved in it.

‘Not everything is as it seems.’

Harry smiled as he remembered the man who had given him the watch. Well, actually it was that man’s phoenix, who delivered the gift on his seventeenth birthday. It was something Harry had never expected given Dumbledore was already dead.

By the hand of Severus Snape, the very person whose demise the young man was mourning at that moment.

Harry had been surprised when he saw that Snape also had a hand on the magic clock. Next to Hermione, Ron, Sirius and Remus. His closest family. And then Severus Snape. Why, he had wondered back then with Fawkes sitting on his shoulder, trilling. But the bird remained silent and hence the mystery lingered on.

Now, it was clear though. All so very clear. It was a hint, planted by the genius that was Albus Dumbledore. A hint no one could figure out until it was late, until Snape was stained with blood, broken on the dirt covered ground. Too late to be saved, too live freely without masters controlling him, without the past haunting him.

Harry snapped up the lid with a swift movement. He needed confirmation. Or evidence. Or anything that would help him cope with the loss he wasn’t expecting to feel.

But it didn't come.

Five hands were previously all on ‘Mortal Peril’. Since Voldemort’s death, four moved to ‘School’.

The fifth though.

The fifth stayed where it was. Harry jumped up from the stairs.

“What’s wrong mate?’ Ron asked, standing up too. Harry turned around and looked over the school. Was the clock wrong? Was it possible that he broke it during the fight with Voldemort or...

“Merlin Harry!” Ron shouted suddenly pointing a shaking finger at something behind the black haired man. “I don't bloody believe it!”

The moment seemed to freeze. Harry spun around but it looked as if his body was unable to do anything fast. Nor was the world, it appeared. As the morning rays broke through the clouds, they illuminated the tiny dust particles that were scattered around the courtyard. The diminutive elements of the school stopped their unhurried drifting in the air, creating a hazy and vague atmosphere. Maybe that was why Harry didn't believe his eyes at first.

Or maybe because what he saw was impossible.

A black figure emerged from the mist of the last battle, tattered and broken, but Harry’s heart still missed a beat. A phoenix swayed elegantly behind him, his fiery red wings outstretched and almost curling protectively around the dark man.

Fawkes trilled and the Elder Wand slipped out from Harry’s shaking fingers, while his left hand tightened around the clock. It wasn’t broken, Harry realized. It worked perfectly. The world around them seemed non-existent as he stepped hesitantly towards the man who, by all means, was supposed to be dead.

When the delusion didn't dissipate, Harry’s tentative move turned into hurried and determined strides that broke into running. Black eyes snapped onto him and the gaze burned him, a sensation he thought he would never have to endure again. But he welcomed it now as it came with a sudden sense of relief, so strong, Harry felt his chest would burst in a second.

Severus Snape was alive. His black robes were bloody but his wounds healed. His eyes slightly dim but still cautious. Still alive.

Alive; the world echoed in his fogged mind and a realization struck him that he, too, felt once again alive and breathing and feeling, not just an empty shell of flesh and a shattered soul.

Snape reached for his black wand under his cloak and it slid out fast like a snake ready to bite and tear into flesh. Harry slowed down but just a bit, his fast pace still firm and unwavering. Snape stepped back slightly and Fawkes’s singing became louder.

When Harry was just five steps away but still not slowing down, Snape raised his wand and cast a shield around him. Harry brushed it away with a wave of his hand. The blunt black eyes seemed scared for a second.

Two more steps.

His hand was already reached out so he grasped the professor’s neck and pulled him closer. Their bodies clashed against each other and Harry clutched into the torn fabric on the man’s back. Snape wasn’t moving, he remained still but Harry could hear his surprised gasp as he stood in Harry’s strong embrace.

“You're alive...” Harry sighed softly and he sensed his magic prickle under his skin like millions of tiny bugs trying to break out from their hold and rush onto the surface until he felt a hesitant touch on the small of his back. As Snape patted his waist, his magic eased out, waving serenely deep inside him, relaxed and tranquil.

“Harry?” A voice snapped behind them, demanding but confused.

He held Snape in his embrace for a moment longer than necessary then took a deep breath before he let his arm fall to his sides. He turned around to face Minerva and was surprised to find her pointing a wand at them. Bewilderment reflected on the many faces that gathered around them.

Harry tensed and stepped back, closer to Snape to cover him with his body, before Professor McGonagall could reach him with her wrath. “Step away Harry!” She commanded, sparks flying from her wand.

“No,” Harry refused, reaching a hand behind him, searching for Snape’s arm to hold him still before he could flee. “He’s innocent.”

“He murdered Albus.” Minerva hissed, her lips thin like a razor.

“By his orders.” Harry shouted so that everyone around them could hear him. “I can explain.” He stated calming now. “He did everything under Professor Dumbledore’s orders, everything.”

“He was dying, Minerva.” Snape spoke behind Harry, his usually deep and smooth voice sounded croaked and defeated, merged with immense sadness and remorse.

“Shut your mouth, Severus!” Minerva shrieked shooting a red flash towards Snape. Harry’s shield came up immediately and vibrated between the woman and them, while the red spark of involuntary magic bounced off with a sizzling sound.

“Put down your wand!” Harry bellowed. “He’s telling the truth!” A weak hand grabbed his shoulder and he felt Snape collapsing behind him. He turned around swiftly and put his professor’s arm on his shoulder, while he put his hand around the man’s back to hold him steady. Snape painfully moaned something, probably Harry’s name, his eyelids closing. “Do you think I would protect him if I didn’t have proof that he’s innocent?”

It was Hermione, who put a gentle hand on McGonagall’s arm and repeated soft, “They are telling the truth, Professor. Please, let them explain.”

“We don't have time,” Harry groaned urging. “He needs a Healer! Fast!”

“Mister Potter, that man you are protecting is a tr-“ Minerva started sharply but Harry cut in his words.

“Exactly Professor, I’m protecting him, me, who saw it all happen, remember? Me, who killed Voldemort! Please Professor trust me!” Harry cried desperately as he felt Snape’s body becoming weaker and weaker.

“He killed Albus Dumbledore, Potter, what could he bring up as an excuse for that?!” Minerva shook down Hermione’s fingers and raised her wand again. “I should-“

“This man,” Harry flared up, “is under my protection! No one is to lay a finger on him, or harm in any way!” His shield pulsated with his every word. “If you don't believe me, Professor, look at the phoenix! Fawkes only comes to people who prove their loyalty to Dumbledore and he saved Snape! Isn’t that proof enough?”

Minerva’s eyes snapped at the bird, who landed gently on Snape’s shoulder and trilled encouraging while brushing his soft head to Snape’s black hair. This act seemed to have convinced her as she lowered her wand and stepped away. Harry’s shield disappeared and Hermione rushed to them. She casted Snape’s body feather light to make it easier for Harry to carry him.

“Thank you Professor,” Harry nodded towards the woman, “Come with us, I will explain everything in the Infirmary but we have to get Madam Pomfrey for him first.” He put his hand on the back of Snape’s knees and lifted the weightless body into his arms. He marched up to the Hospital Wing as fast as he could with Ron, Hermione and Minerva on his heels and Fawkes flying over them.

“Get him a bed and get me Madame Pomfrey. I think... he’s dying.” He ordered Ron with trembling voice, who ran forward.

They rushed through the corridors wordlessly. Ron was waiting for them at the doors. “Follow me,” he said, leading them towards the end of the Infirmary where Madam Pomfrey was waiting for them with a bed separated from the others. Two other Healers were with her, both from St. Mungo’s.

Harry placed the professor gently onto the bed and looked at Madam Pomfrey. “You will treat him with your best effort, because if he dies, an innocent person’s soul will weight yours, Madam Pomfrey.”

The woman and the two other Healers looked at him with despise. “He could even be The Dark Lord himself, Mister Potter, I would do my absolute best to heal him.“ She scoffed.

“I’m glad we agree.” Harry sighed, stepping away from the bed.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus walked in the Ministry’s corridors with his head bowed, not willing to look up at the many wizards and witches around him. His steps were noiseless but his travelling cloak swished behind him with every movement, like a black cloud that followed him everywhere. And given his current mood that would not even be a surprise. Even the weather agreed with him. The sudden thunderstorm that had appeared out of nowhere this morning was like a mirror of his current temper. His morning ritual that consisted of a cup of black coffee and a short walk was interrupted with a deafening crack of thunder, which slashed through the dark morning sky.

He had to admit a thunderstorm on the day of the verdict was almost poetic. It hummed as perfect background music to his final judgement, when the Wizengamot, the full Wizengamot, would finally decide if Severus deserved Order of Merlin or a life sentence in Azkaban for his duties before and during the war. Severus personally believed it was the latter they would decide on and, if he wanted to be completely honest with himself, he also considered that was what he actually merited.

He wouldn’t be shocked if the two Aurors standing just outside the courtroom would be waiting for him on this dark morning. Surprisingly however, there was one man who would be very astonished if he were to be sentenced to live the rest of his shallow life in the Wizarding Prison. Long nights preparing for the trials, justification for every charge against Severus, evidence for every argument and most importantly, the Saviour of the Wizarding World’s plea of Severus’ innocence would all be for nothing. He had to laugh at that. He, innocent? Severus Snape? Who killed, tortured and did everything else, what was necessary or needed to please the Dark Lord? Only Potter could say that...

Well, Potter, his team of lawyers and his other loyal minions with Granger and Weasley in the lead. Severus was still incredulous when he remembered all the people who had pledged on the stand for his innocence. The two faithful followers of course, surely ordered by Potter, in the name of friendship swore that without Severus Snape they would have never been able to destroy any Horcruxes, as it was the professor who lead them to the realization of what could kill a Horcrux. Not to mention providing them with the sword of Godric Gryffindor.

It was Minerva, and Severus couldn't express his gratitude enough over this, given the woman’s relationship with Albus, who affirmed that Severus was doing the best he could at the time to protect the children in Hogwarts while being the Headmaster. She told the Wizengamot that without him there would have been a massacre of the Muggle born students. She also declared that Hogwarts would have never let Severus sit in the Headmaster’s office if he were to have any intention to harm the children in any way. “The school and her protective wards, you see,” she said and Severus frowned because he did not have any recollection of these protective wards even though he was Headmaster for one year. And what a glorious year that was, full of Dark Magic and Crucios, tormented children and Death Eaters with murderous intentions...

Minerva’s testimony was however, when Severus started to realize that Potter, while firmly believing in his innocence, also knew that making the Wizengamot believe that he was acting on Dumbledore’s order might have been a bit trickier than it first seemed. The whole Wizarding World lived in the knowledge for more than a year that he was a murderer and not just any, but the one who had killed Albus Dumbledore. They had to wash that off him in order to win his case.

Potter earned his respect when his layers called Lucius Malfoy to the stand. His friend of almost thirty years, the man he lied to during the last eighteen. Potter’s lawyer asked two questions from him. One was if he could explain how Voldemort rewarded his most trusted servant, Severus Snape. Malfoy recalled the numerous tortures and bloodshed that occurred whenever the Dark Lord received bad news, had mood swings, or was simply bored. And Severus realized what Potter’s tactic was. The boy was trying to make him into a martyr. And it worked; he could see the pity in the many eyes that riveted on him. Now pity was a despicable thing when it came from a person like Potter or Black and Severus would have never allowed that to happen. But it was an entirely different thing coming from the people who would vote on his prison sentence.

The second question asked from Lucius was, what was the first order his sixteen year old son, Draco Malfoy, got after he survived the initiation into the ranks of Death Eaters. To kill Albus Dumbledore, was all Lucius had to say. After the astonished gasps had quietened, it was his godson’s turn to take the stand.

And didn't the little Slytherin perform just impeccably, telling everyone how Severus tried to get any information out of him to “help”. But of course Draco never told him anything; not because he was proud of his task or because he wanted to earn his place among the dark followers all by himself, but because he did not trust his own godfather. Interestingly no one asked about the Unbreakable Vow Severus made with Narcissa. As it later transpired that was because, interestingly Potter forgot to mention that. He did not forget to mention or rather show the Wizengamot that one particular memory however, in which Severus informed Albus about what the Dark Lord plotted against him. Potter particularly highlighted the part when Dumbledore ordered Severus to kill him instead of letting the boy do it. Severus almost laughed out loud when his voice, intensified at least ten times, shouted at the Headmaster in the memory, “And my soul, Dumbledore? Mine?” The dead silence that followed was beautiful, and Potter’s sly grin almost heart-warming. Severus never believed Albus when he mentioned that Potter was almost sorted into Slytherin up until this point.

Oh but the biggest performance was yet to come of course. They left the best for the last day. Potter and Severus, right after each other. Severus accepted that for him to be released it was necessary to reveal his so well hidden adoration of Lily. He never wanted anyone to know that but now he was ready to expose this tiny detail. As it turned out, Potter was not. He never mentioned the deep friendship between Lily and Severus, he almost made it look like Severus returned to the Light because of regret of ever joining the Dark Lord’s ranks. Which was true again as Severus did join Dumbledore because of remorse. But it was what happened to Lily that he regretted the most and made him turn sides, not just the fact that Severus realized that his Lord was an utter nutcase as Potter had put it.

Then the lawyers asked more and more, and Potter answered and showed everything including even him being one of the Horcruxes, almost all the memories the professor left for him and Severus was convinced the boy was a true Slytherin. No one could notice the little secrets he hid in his testimony. Potter claimed he would have been dead if Severus hadn’t saved him in his first year. He never said that at that time he himself believed that Severus was behind the attacks. He also mentioned an old book from his sixth year that was even taken as evidence. Severus’ Potions book, he recognized it of course, stating that without the Professor’s book half of his friends, two Weasleys, Granger, Longbottom, Lovegood, Potter listed the names, interestingly all heroes and heroines of the war, would have died during that dreadful night Albus was killed. Potter enumerated all the spells and hexes they had learned from the book that helped them survive while searching for Horcruxes and even after. He again, forgot to mention that he also almost killed Draco with one of the spells.

They asked about the night of the war, about what had transpired in the Shrieking Shack another thing Severus did not want to hear and yet he couldn't tear his eyes away from the green eyes that clung to him while Potter spoke about Voldemort and Nagini’s attack. The acting was again beautiful, several people in the Wizengamot shed tears as they listened to Potter recalling every tiny aspect from Voldemort’s cold voice, to the snake’s angry hiss or the stingy smell of the venom, the crimson blood that flooded out of the deep cut on Severus’ neck and soaked his robes. Potter went into incredible details his voice becoming more and more monotonic as he sank deeper and deeper into the horrible events. Staring at something on the ground, Potter’s attention shifted, he was lost in his memories. The lawyer offered him a cup of water and Severus took a mental note to congratulate later on to Potter about his performance. But then he saw the boy’s shaking hands clutching at the glass of water and the lawyer tapping him on the arm reassuringly before asking, “Could you tell us what happened then?”

“He asked me to look at him. Then he... died.” Potter answered with soft voice, pressing a gulp of water down his throat. Severus’ eyes widened. Did he really ask the boy to do that? This was new. He did not remember this. Was this another trick or...? He waited for Potter to look at him with a touch of a small smile glinting in his eyes but it didn't happen. Even when Potter was finally released from the stand and walked past Severus he didn't look at him, though Severus watched him intensely. The boy just walked past the chair in the middle of the room, a fingertip gently brushing Severus’ hand.

There was a slight murmur in the room then everyone turned towards Severus. Before the lawyers could ask anything from him Fawkes appeared in a burst of flame then landed softly on Severus’ knee. The professor watched the bird in amazement, suspecting that maybe somehow Albus was reborn in this phoenix, as no one else would have the guts for such dramatics, not even Potter. The bird looked back at him knowingly, then trilled and pressed his feathery head to his neck, right where his scar was. Fawkes had definitely learned some tricks from Dumbledore.

“Animals are not allowed in the courtroom!” A witch shouted from somewhere in the left.

“Don't you know what bird this is?” Someone shouted back, a wizard this time. He sounded quite familiar to Severus. “That’s Dumbledore’s phoenix, Fawkes.”

“That can be any phoenix.” The witch said to the man, who now stood up and Severus recognized him as Ollivander.

“Oh but it couldn't,” The wand maker chuckled mysteriously. “I would know that bird even with my eyes closed. We had a bit of an argument you see, back when I took two of his tail feathers.” He held out a hand to show an old scar on his right arm that looked as if something bit a piece out of him. Fawkes meanwhile tweeted apologetically. Severus patted the bird’s head and looked behind him, searching for Potter. If this was yet another tactic, it was again, brilliant. But Potter wasn’t in the room only his redhead friend.

“Animals are still not allowed in the courtroom.” The witch insisted.

“Excuse me,” stood up a young wizard. “As you may know I’m a Magizoologist and uhm... arguing about whether we let Fawkes stay or not is not really an issue here, is it. You see, you can't command a phoenix. If he wants to stay, he will.”

“Well now dear Rolf, are you telling me if we put that bird outside of the room it will come back again?” The witch asked incredulously. Severus frowned, how people in the Wizengamot could be so dim like this woman.

“Oh yes, if he wants to come back, he will. He did just show up a minute ago, did you not see, Mrs. Williamson.” Rolf pointed out the, Severus thought, very obvious. Fawkes, as if trying to join the conversion spread his wings and disappeared from Severus’ thigh, leaving behind only a bit of cinder scattered in the air. The phoenix reappeared right in front of Mrs. Williamson, who jerked back in her seat with a yelp.

A quite laughter ran though the Wizengamot and Severus massaged his temple in irritation. “Not helping...” He murmured to the bird and there was no way he could hear Severus’ sigh but Fawkes turned around with an elegant swish of his great wings and landed yet again gracefully on Severus’ leg.

“The bird shall stay!” Shacklebolt boomed almost laughing from the centre of the courtroom. “Tell me something Mr. Scamander, aren’t phoenixes supposed to be loyal creatures?”

Rolf Scamander laughed out loudly. “Yes Minister, you could say that. But it would be like saying that the new Silverthunder is a barely adequate duster. Phoenixes are the most loyal beasts we know of. Their powers are incredible and we barely know anything about them. If you don't mind me saying we learned most of it from Professor Dumbledore’s studies on this very bird right here. There aren’t many left in Europe, you see. What I would do to-“ Rolf’s voice died off and he blushed and pulled his hand back. Fawkes seemed to have noticed the interest in him and flew over to the man, who gasped then slowly petted the bird.

“Mr Scamander, this is courtroom not a Menagerie.” Kingsley roared, almost smirking. “If you care to elaborate on that? We all know that the Silverthunder is the best and fastest racing broom on the market right now. Which means, you are telling me that phoenixes are the most loyal creatures, and yet this one here is sitting on the leg of the very man, who had killed his owner? That seems contradictory.”

Severus gaped. It was one thing from Potter to get all these witness behind him and convince them to swear on his innocence. However, what Kingsley was doing right now, this transparent yet somehow honest looking inquiry about phoenixes? It was so obvious where it was going yet no one seemed to be offended that the Minister for Magic, Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot was deliberately steering the questioning in this unbelievably blatant way. Severus looked behind him yet again, his eyes looking for Potter. He was in the room again, leaning against the door watching intently the conversation, but still pale as a dead body. Granger was holding onto three of his fingers, her thumb gently soothing Potter. Something cold and bitter swept through Severus and he turned around looking for Dementors but the unearthly creatures stayed away from his trial. His gaze shifted back on Potter, who was now watching him. But as their eyes connected, Potter seemed to pale even whiter and looked away.

“Pardon me Minister,” Scamander started hesitantly, “but not owner, more like partner if you will. There is no owned when it comes to a phoenix, as I said you cannot command them, they are not like dogs. If a phoenix wants to stay with a witch or wizard they can, or cannot if they decide that the human doesn’t deserve them, the same way as a human can or cannot accept the friendship of a phoenix. Now this friendship, if you will, grows with time of course and slowly turns into more. A bond perhaps would describe it. That is why a phoenix, after being bonded with the wizard or witch can appear to anyone showing loyalty to their bonded one.”

“So in our case, and please correct me if I’m wrong Mr. Scamander, I am after all just an inept bystander when it comes to Magizoology, Albus and Fawkes are bonded, so Fawkes can appear to anyone in need who is truly loyal to Albus, am I right?” Shacklebolt asked as if he would be confused.

Rolf nodded determined. “Exactly Minister. Now to the part as of why is Fawkes protecting this offender, that is quite the question, Sir. Well, the obvious answer would be because Professor Snape has proven his utmost loyalty to Albus Dumbledore. With why, we cannot know for sure. But given Mr. Potter’s earlier statement I would suggest, dying for an order given by Professor Dumbledore could qualify as showing utmost loyalty. Hence Fawkes cured him as much as he could in the Shack. We all read the report from St. Mungo’s, they found traces of phoenix tear in the Professor’s blood, not to mention the fact he survived the attack described in depth by Mr. Potter earlier today.”

“Hold on a second,” another witch stood up not far from Mr. Ollivander. “Are you telling me that we could actually consider the behaviour of this beast as evidence toward Severus Snape’s innocence?”

“That,” Rolf took a deep breath, “is my opinion, yes. And...” He looked at the two Aurors stationed at the door not far from Potter, “Gentlemen, correct me if I’m wrong, but Fawkes had not just cure Professor Snape, he also... attacked some of the Aurors who tried to arrest him, is that true?”

One of the Aurors cleared his throat awkwardly before he answered, “Yes, Mr. Scamander, that is true.”

“The most loyal beasts...” Rolf murmured once more, tapping Fawkes’ sharp yellow beak gently, before he sat back and Fawkes returned to Severus and perched himself on the professor’s shoulder.

Footsteps echoed in the empty corridor, which dragged Severus back to the present with an awful shove. A clap of thunder shook the building and he looked up to the figure approaching him. It was Potter, who else would it be, soaking wet as if he walked all the way here from Grimmauld Place. He wanted to feel surprise to see the boy here, on the day of the verdict but unfortunately he couldn't. Not anymore. Not with all that was behind them already, with all the help Potter gave without even asking Severus if he wanted it.

The blasted boy came to the verdict and Severus knew he should feel relieved that he didn't need to face this alone but he couldn't repress the bitter feeling of shame building up in his stomach. After all Potter did, he couldn't imagine how the boy would endure the negative outcome of the trial.

But it was all Severus’ fault, wasn’t it? His testimony in the end that swept aside all the good Potter had done. Severus swore to himself that he would not lie or deceive anyone when he would be called to the stand. He would give the most honest answers to every question, no matter what they would think of him. And he ruined everything with that, he knew it, he could feel it in the court and he could sense it when he looked at Potter and the boy turned around, pale as a ghost, and walked out of the room. But he owed this much to himself and to Albus’ memory.

Severus knew why Potter was doing all this, the boy felt personally responsible for everything, idiotic that may seem, as it was all done to protect him and him only. Despite of all the hatred and other much more positive feelings he harboured for the boy lying hidden and enclosed, he wasn’t willing to let the Hero suffer any more. Potter lived through enough loss and watching his Potions Master, who dedicated half of his life saving him, go to prison was something Severus did not want to put through this boy.

Severus didn't want to go to Azkaban, but that would be what he truly deserved. Potter however would never let him go to a place like that. The boy would fight until his last breath as he did during the war but Severus couldn't let him do that.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry walked with steady steps towards Snape, who was standing in front of the courtroom with the two silent Aurors. He took a deep breath then exhaled slowly. The plan was in motion. No matter what the outcome of this trial would be, Professor Severus Snape would not go to prison, the thought itself calmed Harry. They were ready for every possibility, even if they had to force Snape to run away and leave London behind him and live a quiet life in the countryside maybe, or wherever he wanted. Hermione, Ron, Neville, Luna, Fred, George, Ginny, Charley, Bill, Dean and Seamus where waiting invisibly on their designated posts ready to attack if it was needed. Yes, Harry was willing to protect Snape no matter what, even if it cost his own freedom.

Fawkes appeared and trilled right over Harry and the young man smiled at the bird. “Welcome to the team.” He winked and the phoenix chirped happily.

“Get that blasted bird away from me.” Snape welcomed them with a sneer and Harry almost laughed at him.

“He’s here for support, Professor.”

“Support, Mister Potter? In what manner could this bird support me? Or is he here on your behalf?” Snape raised an eyebrow.

“I believe for both of us, but if you prefer I can say he’s here for me. But willing to give you a helping... wing were you in need of it.” Harry smiled secretively.

Snape eyed him for a second then scoffed. “What are you doing here anyway, Mister Potter?”

Harry felt taken aback for a second. Shouldn’t that be obvious? “I’m here because of the verdict, maybe?” He answered slowly with a sarcastic expression and a raised eyebrow.

“The verdict is neither your concern nor your business, Mister Potter. Surely the Hero of the Wizarding World has better things to do than visiting a courtroom at nine in the morning.”

“Not my business, is it now, Professor Snape?” Harry frowned. “I do recall your trial being pretty much my business during the last couple of weeks as I spent most of my time helping you out.” Harry glared at Snape, his anger boiling already. Only Snape could make him feel this heated within only moments of meeting the man.

“And I do not recall ever asking you to do it. I do recall however an argument that occurred on your doorstep after I delivered you back your lawyers.” Snape remarked coolly.

Harry inhaled again, trying to remain calm. He knew this would happen, he knew his Professor well enough that this conversation would surface yet again but he really hoped to avoid it.

“Professor,” He started putting up a hand in surrender. “I just wanted to help and that I still want to do. You don't deserve to go to Azkaban. Whether you want me to stay or not, I will stay here until... it is necessary.”

Snape watched him and for a second Harry held his gaze but he remembered that the man excelled in Legilimency, so he quickly averted his eyes somewhere else.

“You are plotting something, Potter!” Snape snapped at him quietly enough so that the Aurors at the door wouldn’t hear him but his tone still managed to make Harry feel like a schoolboy in his first year doing something wrong. He sighed in resignation then looked back in the black eyes that mirrored anger.

“Nothing special, it’s just a... safety net. I will not let you get into Azkaban for saving the Wizarding World.”

“No! Absolutely not!” Snape hissed silently. “Whatever your intensions are I do not care, I do not wish to take part in any arrangement of yours.”

Harry shrugged. “We can do it even without your consent. You shouldn’t be punished, Professor, not you.”

“Potter you idiot, don't you see? I wouldn’t be punished for Saving the Wizarding World, I would be punished because I killed Albus Dumbledore with my own hand. And many others as well.”

“You were ordered.” Harry insisted.

“Potter listen to me, because I’m not going to say this again. Whatever the outcome, you will do nothing. If I’m sentenced to spend the rest of my life in Azkaban, you will quietly walk away and never, I repeat never see me again. If you do anything else, I swear to Merlin I will hunt you down myself.”

Harry smiled at that. That would be quite the hardship given he would be either dead or sitting in a not so comfortable cell in the depth of the Wizarding Prison where he would certainly be put if he were to rescue Snape from the Ministry. Nevertheless, Snape was welcomed to try. He shrugged again and turned away from his professor but Snape pulled him back by his arm.

“Look you idiot brat, I don't need you to sacrifice your life for me, do you understand? I don't need your help, I don't need anything from you Potter, not now, not ever!” Snape declared paling slightly.

“Well,” Harry snapped angrily, “I didn't want your help when I was in my first year or third or fourth or fifth or sixth. I never wanted any help from you when I was out there with Ron and Hermione looking for Horcruxes while people were literally hunting us! I never wanted you to risk your life every single day spying on a lunatic! I never wanted any of this!” He growled motioning around them. “And yet it happened. And you helped me. You saved my life more times than I can even recall. Sir, I don't even know where I would be without your help. I’d be dead, most likely. You risked your life for me, Professor, and you almost... you almost... If it’s not for Fawkes, you would be...” But Harry couldn't finish the sentence. He still shuddered every time he had to talk about that night he received Snape’s memories. During the trial, when he had to talk about it in detail he had felt so bad, he had to vomit after his testimony.

“Yes, Potter, I’m perfectly aware of what situation I would be in if the blasted bird did not come to my rescue.” His grip on Harry’s arm tightened. “And my situation was different, I made a promise. You on the other hand-“

“I made a promise too.” Harry stated firmly interrupting his professor.

“Yes, indeed you did. To a damn bird.” Snape sneered letting go of Harry’s hand.

“That promise wasn’t made to Fawkes, Sir.” Harry admitted quietly.

The door to the courtroom opened and Harry didn't say what was on his tongue. Of course he didn't make that promise to a bird but the man who it was meant for, had been lying unconsciously on a hospital bed for two months already.

Snape was transferred to St Mungo’s about two weeks after that bright May morning and Harry followed him without any hesitation. By that time, he had managed to convince most of the people around him about Snape’s actions during Voldemort’s reign. Minerva was among the first who accepted the man again, but Harry knew she felt slightly betrayed for being left out all these years. But she also admitted she felt remorseful as she believed she should have taken much more care of Severus during the last year as he was Headmaster and even years before that. Harry was sure, Professor McGonagall regretted not keeping at least one of her sharp eyes on Severus Snape from the very moment she put the Sorting Hat on his head.

Convincing Sirius and Remus was hard enough, because Harry wanted to leave out the part about Snape’s feelings for Lily, as he suspected that would just aggravate the hatred between the three men. He informed Kingsley too, who promised Harry to make Professor Snape’s trial as smooth as possible. He visited the two Malfoys in Azkaban and revealed Snape’s motives in exchange for their help during the court case. Harry realized he had to get some Death Eaters on the stand too, and who would be better than these two. They agreed, because Harry wouldn’t be ungrateful; Malfoy’s hearing would be held in a week and their wealth, including every account they had in Gringotts had been frozen the moment they were charged. They had to face a full Wizengamot without a proper lawyer and someone from the Light Side to support them. Harry was ready to provide both.

While in St. Mungo’s, Snape was closely monitored. The snake venom in his system did some pretty serious damage in his head and other organs, something not even Fawkes was able to heal. The Healers were all faithful to their vows and did everything they could to help the sleeping man. Snape was held in a potion-induced coma for more than a month so that the potions could heal his insides and his brain. Harry checked his watch daily but Snape’s hand was still constantly on ‘Mortal Peril’. After June, they had stopped with the sleeping potions but the professor still didn't wake up. Harry was furious. He even accused the Healers of intentionally delaying the healing process. Hermione was the only one who could calm him down when she showed him the script of the Unbreakable Vow the Healers had to take; it prevented them from ever harming anyone intentionally or else they would break the Vow. And Harry knew what that implied.

Snape had two constant companions in his silent healing period. Harry and Fawkes. The bird never left the man’s side, he trilled and chirped occasionally, he sometimes flew out of the window to stretch his wings, but only when Harry was in the room too. They never let any stranger close to Snape, Harry and his friends stood constant guard over the man as Snape received more threatening letters now than Harry ever did, mostly from Death Eaters who knew about how the man betrayed and tricked their so beloved leader and helped the one who killed him in the end.

This was the period when Harry grew even closer to Hermione. Ron was mostly working on rebuilding of the school but she stayed with Harry if she could. Moreover, she was the only one who never questioned why Harry spent so much time with Snape’s unconscious body, watching over him, reading to him or just sitting next to him, petting Fawkes. It was a good thing, because Harry did not have an honest answer for this. Whenever someone asked why he stayed beside the Professor, he just shrugged mentioned the memories, murmured something about sacrifice then quickly started talking about the fine summer weather. After a few weeks people accepted it and left him alone. Hermione, she never asked. So it was Harry who bought the topic up first. They were already in July, the weather was nice and warm, and Fawkes was out for a fly when Hermione arrived to the small hospital room. Harry was sitting by the window, reading The Prophet loudly.

“Afternoon,” The girl smiled brightly. “Here, coffee for you and flowers to the Professor.” She always bought a single Tiger Lily and put it on the windowsill in a small vase. “Any change?”

“Thanks,” Harry accepted the coffee with a grateful smile. “And no, still nothing. But Miriam says he’s looking better. I don't see any change...” Harry confessed ruefully. “Do you?”

“Did she now?” Hermione raised an eyebrow while she sat down in the other chair in the room. She looked at Snape and shrugged. “Honestly? I don't. Perhaps she just wanted to be encouraging, you know how she is.”

“Like a mother hen, most of the time.” Harry laughed. “She wanted to cut my hair today.”

“Well Harry...” Hermione grinned bashfully.

“What, it’s not even that long...” Harry dug into the mess that was his hair and waved, “Nah, it’s fine.”

Hermione just laughed and opened her book. Harry wanted to return to the newspaper but his eyes got stuck on the girl.

“Hermione...” He asked hesitantly after a few moments.

“Hmm?” She answered not even looking up at him.

“Why have you never asked why I’m doing this for... him?” Harry queried gently.

Hermione froze for a second then she closed her book and raised her hazel eyes at the young man. “Because I was waiting for you to tell me.” She smiled softly. “I think... I think I know why but... I needed you to figure it out. Did you?”

“I... don't know.” Harry admitted. “At first it was just the memories. I could... feel them inside me and I just couldn't leave him, not with knowing everything he’d done for me, not after how he felt for mom. But then,” Harry faltered not knowing how to express himself, “after his memories settled and calmed it became something else. Hermione I think... I think I care for him.”

“You mean...” Hermione started just as Fawkes flew back in the room. He landed on the girl’s lap and tweeted softly.

“Well I mean I don't think I ever felt happier than the moment I saw him alive?” Harry more like asked than stated this. “It was just such a relief, I mean... I saw him... die. And then he showed me all the memories and finally I understood it all but he was gone. And then suddenly he was just there again. And, and since then he’s just lying here. I don't know, Hermione, it’s so confusing.”

“You will figure it out, Harry. He will wake up soon, then you will see more clearly.”

Two men burst into the room that felt immediately crowed. One held a scroll towards Harry.

“Mr. Potter, I am Auror Robards and I came here on the notion of placing Severus Tobias Snape under arrest. The charges brought against him include cooperating with the Dark Lord, committing treason against the Order of the Phoenix and the murder of Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore. You can see the full list of accusations in the letter provided.”

“You what?” Harry jumped from his seat and shouted at the man almost twice his size. “This cannot be true!”

“I can assure you, Mr. Potter, it is true.” Robards bowed his head slightly towards him before he turned back to his colleague. “Help me with the man.”

“Don't you dare lay a hand on him!” Harry yelled stepping between the Aurors and the professor’s bed. “The Minister for Magic himself guaranteed Professor Snape that he can defend himself without going to jail. His bail was settled. He’s not going anywhere.”

“The Minister for Magic has no authority concerning the incarceration of a criminal and murderer.” The Auror stated firmly.

“It was a signed decree from the Minister, of course he has authority-“

“No Mr. Potter he has not. This man is a murderer and he will be transferred where he belongs. To Azkaban.”

“You can't be serious!” Harry roared, taking a desperate look at Hermione, who tried to sneak out of the room to get some help. “This man is sick, you can't put him in Azkaban! He has to stay here!”

“Unfortunately, Mr. Potter, no one knows when he will wake up, if ever, but he is currently under arrest. He does not need medical help, he is only under surveillance. Therefore, he can be transported where he should be, namely in prison.”

“You are out of your mind! With this logic you could arrest even me for killing Voldemort!” Harry was pleased to see that the name still made the two Aurors shudder in fear.

“You don't make sense, Sir. We don't have any business with you, we are here on behalf of Mr. Snape.”

Harry knew he wasn’t making sense, he was just trying to get some time until Hermione would get back with either Kingsley or the lawyers.

“Get out of here both of you!” He pointed at the door. “Severus Snape stays here. This man is under my protection everyone knows that. I vouch for him until he wakes up to do it for himself.”

If he wakes up, Mr. Potter, if.” Robards said with a sly smirk on his face.

Harry was about to hex the man outside but before he could reach for his wand a red blur rushed past him and the next thing he knew was that Fawkes was shrieking over the two Aurors, his claws slashing the red robes or whatever he found. The two Aurors covered their heads with their arms as the phoenix clattered his sharp beak right next to their ears.

Robards sent a Stunning Spell towards Fawkes but missed him and the hex flew right next to Harry, so close, he could feel the warmth of the magic. It disappeared out the open window, who could tell what stopped it eventually. Harry dodged a blue light that was aimed right at him, right after he pulled a shield around Snape. He casted a Disarming Spell on the Auror that had remained silent during the whole conversation and was pleased to see his wand fly out of his hand and roll under the small cabinet in the corner.

Fawkes meanwhile retreated and was circling over their heads.

“Potter, I highly recommend you cease firing, or else...”

“One of you is already unarmed; do you really think this is a good time to make threats?” Harry retorted with a grin.

“I can handle a boy like you with my hand tied behind my back!” Robards laughed.

“Well, let’s see that!” Harry took the opportunity and casted a silent and unseen Incarcerous.

“Why are you even protecting a foul creature like that?! He betrayed everything he once believed in! He tricked everyone who believed him! He’s a liar and a killer.” Robards jested not noticing the ropes that sneaked around the man’s legs and tied him firmly. The Auror fell over but he was still capable of sending a curse towards Harry, which this time hit him on his side. He felt his warm blood gush out of the cut and he staggered backwards until he hit Snape’s bed. His hand grasped for something he could lean on and found his Professor’s leg first. As he touched the man, a sudden rush of warmness awakened in his body, followed by a slash of pain in his head, but he didn't waste any time.

“Stupify!” He screamed, pointing his wand at the two men and the spell that burst out from the tip of his wand knocked out both of them.

“He is a good man.” Harry groaned, as he dropped on his knees and already felt his vision blur. Fawkes trilled over him, his music recalled the warmness he sensed previously. What the hell was that anyway? The thought became quite fuzzy soon enough and clutching his side, he fell on the ground. Fawkes’ head brushed against his face before the bird started singing again and suddenly Harry’s vision became more focused and after a minute or so, even the pain subsided.

When Fawkes stopped his music, he pushed himself up. His shirt was still wet and bloody but his cut healed; only a faint white scar reminded him of what had just took place in the ward. The phoenix chirped and Harry looked at him.

“Thanks Fawkes. Again.” He grinned. “Nice job, by the way.” Harry smirked looking at the two numb bodies by the door, which were lightly bleeding from several scratches.

Fawkes trilled and stretched his neck towards Snape. Harry’s shield died away while he was on the ground but Harry knew nothing went through it beforehand. Snape was still okay.

“Don't worry, Fawkes, he’s safe. I’ll protect him.”

Fawkes looked at him dead in the eyes and Harry was surprised for a second. His yellow eyes saw through Harry’s soul at that moment, and then the bird tilted his head and chirped again.

“Yes, that’s a promise.” Harry answered the unasked question. The bird tweeted acceptingly then leaned his head to Harry’s pocket. “What... What do you want Fawkes?” Harry asked when the phoenix repeated the motion. He dug into his pocket but there was nothing inside, just the watch Dumbledore had given him for his birthday.

Fawkes trilled happily. “What? This?” Harry examined the watch but it wasn’t any different than usual. He opened it but before what he saw could register in him, someone spoke in the room.

“Mister Potter,” drawled the deep voice behind him. “To which deity should I pray to finally get rid of you?”

Snape’s hand on the watch moved from ‘Mortal Peril’ to ‘Hospital’.

“P-Professor?” Harry jumped up but he was still a bit wobbly. His hand again searched for support and found Snape’s leg. “You’re awake!” Harry grinned, relief and happiness washing through his system like a tidal wave.

“Obviously.” Snape sneered and Harry was glad to see the scorn on the man’s face. “Were you defending my honour just now, Mister Potter?” Snape croaked with a raised eyebrow tilting his head towards the unconscious Auror. “How remarkable. Without doubt, the world has changed since The Dark Lord’s demise. However, Mister Potter, I must insist you remove your hand from me, as I firmly believe cursing the Saviour would not do any good to my image you just protected, ever so vehemently, I might add.”

“Sorry, Sir.” Harry said gripping onto the bed instead of Snape’s leg. Fawkes jumped up the sheet and walked up to Snape’s stomach. He pulled his wings tightly under him and nestled on the Professor. “How are you feeling?” Harry reached for a glass of water and handed it to Snape who accepted it with a slight nod.

“Bearable, given the circumstances.” Snape sighed lightly. “Explain o me three things if you will, Mister Potter. One, why did you feel the need to attack an Auror just now? Two, why on Earth are you covered in blood yet again? And three, why the bloody hell is there a bird sitting on me?”

 

o.O.o

 

Once again the Full Wizengamot was present but Severus did not expect anything else. One of the Aurors who was stationed outside previously, motioned him into the chair in the middle of the courtroom. He sat down and felt Potter stand right behind him. It wasn’t actually the boy, he sensed, but his magic that seemed to stroke him every time they stood close enough. Being aware of Potter’s magic stirring against him was something Severus wanted to un-notice, if there was such thing even possible. Ever since he felt the warm magic caress him in the hospital when he first woke up with two unconscious Aurors, a bloody Potter and an immortal fiery turkey in the room, he felt uncomfortable with Potter in his close vicinity. If Potter was aware of this aspect, it remained a mystery, Severus never asked, too afraid of the answer.

“We gathered here today,” Kingsley Shacklebolt stood up from his chair, “to announce the verdict in the case of Wizarding World contra Severus Tobias Snape. The charges against Mister Snape are as follows: treason committed against the Wizarding Word, conspiracy with Lord Voldemort, complicity in felonies committed by Lord Voldemort, endangerment and torture of the students in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry while operating as Headmaster, filtering the Order of the Phoenix and committing espionage against said organization, and for last premeditated murder committed against Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore.”

Severus stomach clenched as he listened to the list that seemed excessively short given all the terrible deeds he had committed during all those years. Potter grasped his shoulder but he did not have the power to tell the boy off. He welcomed the warmness that spread through him, even thought he would regret it later.

“In the accusation of treason committed against the Wizarding Word,” boomed the Minister, “the Wizengamot found Mister Snape...” Severus heard Potter take a deep breath behind him, “not guilty.” The air Potter exhaled brushed against his ear and somehow felt like a gentle caress. “In the accusation of conspiracy with Lord Voldemort: not guilty. In the accusation of complicity in felonies committed by Lord Voldemort: not guilty. In the accusation of endangerment and torture of the students in Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry while operating as Headmaster: not guilty. In the accusation of filtering the Order of the Phoenix and committing espionage against said organization: not guilty.” Kingsley looked up from the scroll he was reading and his gaze searched for the Potions Master’s. When the two pair of black eyes met across the courtroom, Severus saw only sorry in them. Kingsley’s deep voice became softer. “In the accusation of committing premeditated murder against Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore,” in that one second long hesitation, Severus experienced a lot of things simultaneously. Kingsley gulped heavily, his Adam’s apple bobbed visibly under his black skin; Potter tensed, his grasp on the professor’s shoulder tightened even more; the courtroom seemed to vibrate with anticipation. Severus only felt emptiness. He knew what was about to happen. He closed his eyes as he waited for that one word. “ Severus Snape was found... guilty.”

Murmur run through the room and it was so loud for a second that Severus couldn't hear the Minister’s voice, who tried to continue speaking, however in vain. Suddenly another whispered voice spoke but from closer, and more discrete.

“If they want to send you to Azkaban, get ready.” Potter mumbled close to his ear. “Fawkes will take you away to someplace safe.”

“Potter!” Severus growled as quietly as possible so that no one would hear him. He couldn't say anything else, because Shacklebolt knocked down his hammer three times and the court went silent again.

“I can't let you suffer any more.” Potter whispered inaudibly before Kingsley started speaking again.

Severus clutched the arm of the chair tightly. He couldn't let Potter do anything stupid. He didn't sacrifice more than half of his own life for this boy to let him take Severus’ place in Azkaban in the end. He turned halfway back towards Potter, who just cleared his throat while his fingers dashed into Severus.

“In the name of the recent discoveries concerning the terminal illness Albus Dumbledore received as a curse planted by Lord Voldemort, and knowing Mister Snape’s involvement in extending the victim’s lifespan, also given the fact that according to numerous Healers at the time of his death Albus Dumbledore had only days to live, tortured by the poison he voluntarily and willingly took, Severus Tobias Snape is herby sentenced to pay a fee of One Thousand Galleons to any Charity Program and spend six months in house arrest, with limited amount of magic allowed. After three months he is eligible of parole in case of agreeing to obey the Magical and Non Magical Law, refrain from any Magical or Non Magical Drug, Alcohol and Potion use, with a few exceptions that must be inspected by the Probation Officer. During his six-month house arrest, Severus Snape is obliged to report to his Probation Officer weekly and to find employment. The Ministry of Magic is willing to help with this given the circumstances, in case Mister Snape does not find a suitable workplace during the first two weeks.” Kingsley finished, scrolled up his paper and sat down.

Severus couldn't move from the shock. That was all?

“That’s.... not bad. Right?” Potter asked hesitantly.

Not bad? Severus thought. How could Potter be this idiotic, this was nothing compared to what he truly deserved. Six month in house arrest? That wasn’t even a problem if they let him brew a few potions for St. Mungo’s for instance or for selling. Brewing did not require magic. Even that one thousand Galleon fee could be covered by what he saved during the seventeen years he was employed in Hogwarts.

Fawkes disappeared in flames as Severus stood up. Shacklebolt came down from the platform and walked towards them. He smiled as he took Severus’ hand in his and shook it with a smile.

“Congratulations, Severus.” He boomed. “Six more months and you are a free man.”

“Thank you, Kingsley.” Severus nodded gratefully towards the black man, who just laughed.

“Don't thank me, Severus. It’s all Harry’s merit.” He noted turning towards the grinning boy. “That was quite the case, Potter. You and Miss Granger would do well as a lawyers too.”

Severus rolled his eyes at that but still looked at Potter with appreciation. Before he could say something, even though he wasn’t sure he wanted to say anything at all, Kingsley lowered his voice and grunted something to the boy.

“Get your people out of Ministry, before they are noticed. I would rather not have more cases with you involved, Harry.”

“You know about them?” Harry whispered astonished. Severus almost fainted. If the boy got arrested after he was almost acquitted, he would go after Potter and kill him with his bare hands.

“I don't know where they are or what your plan was, but I was sure you would be up to something. Call it an old Auror’s gut instinct.” He winked at the boy then turned back to Severus.

“I believe it is high time, that we give this back to you.” Shacklebolt reached into his pocket and pulled out a black wand. A relieved sigh escaped Severus’ lips as he took his wand in hand. He felt the wood warm up in his touch and an eerie silvery light broke out of the surface for a second, then it was gone.

He was about to thank him for everything but Kingsley held up a hand.

“Don't.” He murmured ruefully. “It should be me, who says thanks to you Severus Snape. We would have failed without you and also I must apologize for ever having doubts in your loyalty. In the name of the Ministry, we thank you for your help, Severus. I’ll arrange for your house arrest to be as comfortable as possible. When the six month is up, you will receive your Order of Merlin, of course.”

“Kingsley, you have done enough already.” Severus shook his head.

“No, Severus, all I did was to keep you away from Azkaban until the trial. You would have died in there within a week we all know that. Everything else was...” He looked at Potter again who seemed to blush slightly. “I need to go now; we still have to work out the details of your house arrest with your Officer. She will be your connection to the world during the first three month. Don't worry, you will like her. She doesn’t talk much.” Kingsley winked at him before he turned on his heels and walked away.

There was a loud sizzling noise and Severus looked around, wand already in hand just to see his least favourite burning turkey return. He was carrying something between his claws, like a bag, and a card in his beak. He landed in front of Kingsley’s table, dropped the bag, then jumped back in the air. He dropped the card right over Severus, which drifted precisely onto the professor’s reached out palm, then the bird had the nerve to land with his weightless body over Severus’ shoulder.

“What is this?” Kingsley asked opening the bag. Huge golden Galleons emanated from the brown sack giving him an answer.

“Potter!” Severus snapped facing the boy. “I don't need your mo-“

“That’s not me, Professor.” The boy stated right away, looking at the bag with the same amusement as the Minister.

 “There’s a sign.” Kingsley pointed out a black mark on the sack. “A number and a logo. 787 and... yes, it’s faint but I think it’s the  Gringotts logo. Yes that’s certainly a G and I suppose that’s a Goblin.”

“787, that’s not my safe.” Severus announced, looking still suspiciously at the boy.

“Not mine either.” Potter added without hesitation.

“Then whose is it, Mister Potter? One of your friend’s, perhaps?” Severus queried sneering.

“No offense, Sir, but none of my friends would be able or willing to pay that amount of money.”

“Do you know how much is in here, Harry?” Kingsley asked, frowning.

“Obviously,” Severus sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose, “it’s going to be exactly one thousand Galleons. The fee I am to pay.”

“We have to verify where it is from.” Kingsley declared. “Percy will you-“

“Yes Minister, I am already searching. 787 is an old safe, registered for... for... oh.”

“What is it, boy?” Severus urged the Weasley. The bloody phoenix that saved his life trilled on his shoulder. The phoenix, that bought the money and the card. The phoenix that belonged to... “Oh, indeed.”

“What?” Potter hissed slowly.

“I only have initials but... A. P. W. B. D.” Percy looked up. “I only heard of one person with those initials.”

“So did we,” Kingsley said looking around the shocked courtroom.

“Are you telling me that Dumbledore is paying for his fee?” A witch asked somewhere but Severus wasn’t listening. “How is that even possible?”

People around him started shouting to each other across the room but he did not hear a word. He watched the card in his hand. It was a picture actually, not a card, of a nice wooden and stone cottage somewhere in Scotland, right next to a huge cliff. The green grass was dancing in the gentle wind, while the wild flowers behind the white fence waved at Severus in a friendly manner.

“What is it?” Potter asked softly and Severus found himself answering in the same gentle tone.

“Home.”

He turned the picture around just to discover two short lines, written in narrow and loopy handwriting. It said:

Thank you, Severus.

You know where to find the key.

Albus

Severus had to grasp into the boy to remain standing and Potter supported him until the shaking subsided. The solace those words provided meant much more for Severus than anything else in that moment. As far as he was concerned, he could be in Azkaban as long as he could hold on to those two words from Albus. These few sentences felt like an amnesty issued by the man he had to murder and therefore it was more meaningful than a court verdict could ever be. Because no matter what the Wizengamot or Potter or anyone else believed, he was guilty. No matter what the circumstances, he killed a man, his only friend, and the remorse was eating him up bit by bit. But this note might help change that.

“He has forgiven me.” Severus whispered numbly to the only person who would hear him and understand. He looked down and stared into the green eyes that watched him intently. “Tell me,” Severus ordered with husky voice,” tell me, Potter, this is not one of your carefully elaborated plans.”

“No,” The boy smiled and Severus let the warm sensation wash through him. “It’s him. It’s always him.” Potter tried to fish something out of his pocket. It was a golden pocket watch with silver lines and curves engraved in it. “He does this, you know. He leaves behind notes and signs and you can't know what else you might find out. He gave this to me on my seventeenth birthday. Fawkes delivered this too. Take a look at it.” The boy dropped the watch in Severus’ shaking palm.

“Not everything is as it seems?” Severus frowned.

“Open it. You’ll see what he meant.”

“Why do I have a hand too?” Severus queried quietly and astonished after a moment. Why was he next to Granger, Weasley, Lupin and Black, the people Potter loved most in his life?

“It was his way of telling me to trust you. To believe in you. This is why I stood up for you. Memories can be altered but this, this was evidence.” Potter sighed. “Everyone knows he has forgiven you except you, Sir. The remorse doesn’t let you realize it. But now, you have your evidence.”

For a second Severus wanted to embrace the boy with his gentle words and kind eyes. But instead he just nodded to him then straitened himself. He gave back the pocket watch and looked at Kingsley for further notice.

“Well, it seems the forfeit you were expected to pay has been disbursed.” Shacklebolt grinned. “Which charity woul-“

“Hogwarts.” Severus declared before the Minister could even finish the question.

“Of course.” Kingsley nodded. “Minerva will be glad to hear about this. Wizards and Witches, the court is adjourned.” He announced smashing down his hammer.

 

o.O.o

 

The rain seemed refreshing after the sickening summer heat that had attacked London that week and Severus drew deep breathes while exhaling slowly. They were standing outside the Ministry, Potter only a few metres away, wordlessly waiting for something. Fawkes disappeared and Severus at first hoped it would be forever then soon he found himself missing the warmness from his shoulder and the occasional pleasant chirps.

“Fancy a walk, Mister Potter?”

The boy looked up to the dark sky, heavy raindrops were spotting his glasses fast. A thunder rumbled somewhere far away and he shrugged, “Why not.”

They walked close to each other, closer than what was usually acceptable for Severus and considering it was Potter next to him, this could even be qualified as intimately close.

“What are you going to do now?” He asked the boy who seemed lost in his thoughts.

“I’ll go back to help rebuilding the school. Minerva said we could be completely ready by April. Probably while there, I’ll even finish my last year. I need the NEWTs if I want to be an Auror. What about you?”

“Probably start my own business, if that will be acceptable to my Officer.” Severus sneered. “Until then, home I believe.”

“Can I... see it?” For a second Severus thought that was not how Potter wanted to finish the sentence. He reached into his pocket, took out the picture and showed it to Potter. “It looks... familiar.” The boy reacted hesitantly, and then started massaging his temple with two fingers.

“Headache?”

“Uh... yeah.”

Severus searched his other pocket. Headaches were his constant companions but he knew how to handle them. “Drink this.” He advised holding out a small bottle towards the Gryffindor, who arched an eyebrow but took it and downed the potion in one gulp.

“Do you always carry potions with you, or is this my lucky day?” Potter grinned.

“I am afraid, lucky won’t be the adjective you could use to describe this day.” Severus mocked lightly. “The Saviour of the Wizarding World is not the only one who can suffer from headaches. They are quite common problems, Mister Potter.”

“Don't tell me mundane maladies like a headache dare come close to you as well, Sir.” Severus had to stop walking from disbelief. Did he hear it correctly? Was Potter actually teasing him? What terrible deed has happened to the world?

“Insomnia, if not treated, can cause quite agonizing headaches, hence the constant need for accessible remedy.” Severus answered lightly, his head tilted slightly to the right, studying the boy. He had grown a lot during this summer, not just physically.

“I could... help...” Potter stuttered, snapping his bright green eyes away from Severus’ intent gaze.

“And in what manner would you like the help me with my insomnia, Mister Potter?” Severus smiled as a nice blush crept up on Potter’s neck.

“I meant... khm... If you ever wanted to talk to someone... You know where to find me.”

“As you may remember I won't be leaving my house quite so often in the next couple of months. One of the hindrances of a house arrest, I’m afraid.”

“You can always send an owl.” Potter grinned cheekily now. The blush was nowhere.

“Is this your not so subtle way of asking me to by your pen friend, Mister Potter?”

“Pen or otherwise, but that would be... nice, Sir.”

Severus had to repress his laugh. He and James Potter’s son, friends? What madness.

“Mister Potter, when you know you can’t tame a dragon, why try? Sometimes we just have to accept that some things are impossible.”

Potter smirked. In drenched robes, his ink hair wet and flat but still looking unruly, raindrops streaming down his cheeks, right over his pink lips, the Potter boy smirked at him. That usually would have angered Severus, but not today. Today it was... different.

“You forget I was basically raised by Hagrid.” Potter emphasized, his tempting smirk unwavering under the intense gaze Severus was giving him. “And I live in the impossible.”

“And, pray tell, why exactly would you want that?” Severus asked honestly, starting to walk again.

Potter shrugged as he gave him back the picture. “Nice place, by the way.”

Severus paused for a second. “Thank you.” He said gently, keeping his eyes firmly on the few strangers around them, avoiding looking at the boy.

Severus could sense Potter’s hesitation too, not sure whether Severus meant thank you for the compliment or thank you for keeping me out of Azkaban. He didn't rush to help him clarify it as he didn't know himself. He felt confused. For years, he had to hate the boy; for years, he simply couldn't. Not since his fifth year, something changed there. Something was different.

A headache threatened to visit again so he brushed away the thought. Potter was watching him.

“I’m just glad I could help.” The boy shrugged again. “You helped me out so many times; I don't like being in someone’s dept.”

“You thought...” Potter was a bigger idiot than Severus had ever thought, if that was why he helped. “You never owed me anything, Mister Potter. I was paying for a huge and terrible mistake I committed when you were just a baby.”

“Look, Professor,” Potter stopped and grabbed Severus’ arm to force him to a halt too. Pleading green eyes dug into his black ones. “Can we just... could we just leave that behind us? All of that? We survived a war, which is a miracle on its own. I’m not saying to overlook that, just... all the bad things, can we forget that? Like the hatred and... and the guilt. Can we forget that?”

There was something in those green eyes, something untold and Severus felt like he should know what Potter meant with the unspoken words. But he didn't recognize any of it.

“I feel like I have forgotten already too much, don't you, Mister Potter? Sometimes I look around myself and I feel... there is something missing. Like a sensation that elapsed, a word I wanted to say but it slipped from my mind... a memory I wanted to cherish but I can't recall.” The grip on his arm tightened. “For some reason, I am not fond of forgetting, Mister Potter. Accepting is something different though, that I can attempt to do.”

“Accepting?” Potter asked one step closer.

“Yes, accepting. Accepting what I have done, and live on with it. Accepting what we had to endure and survive it. Mister Potter, I can't promise you to forget why I hated you in the past but I can promise to try to accept you for who you are in the future.”

“I believe...” Potter thought loudly, “I already accepted the fact that you are a snarky, sarcastic, witty enigma, wrapped in black robes. But I’m sure I can live with that.”

Severus snorted and felt a sudden urge to either slap the boy or kiss him senseless. The revelation hit him like a hammer, or maybe it was the headache, which redeemed its threat, and surfaced like millions of stabbing knife in his mind.

He forced his arm out of Potter’s touch just to reach it out towards the boy. “I feel like it is time for our goodbyes.”

Potter’s hand was cold and wet from the rain yet a jolt of warmness spread through Severus’ system as their bare hands touched. It was a short handshake, just a second longer than usual. But to Severus it seemed nothing in this day could be described as usual.

He turned around and waved his hand once, while uttering a soft, “Potter,” as his farewell.

“Professor Snape,” came the answer and Severus knew the boy was grinning again.

Tempted to see that stirring smirk just once more he stopped and turned halfway around. Yes, Potter was smirking, just as Severus anticipated he would. He let his own lips mirror the teasing gesture before he repeated thoughtfully, “Professor... Formalities like that... never suited you, Potter.”

The grin became even wider. “See you then, Snape.”

“Maybe, Potter. Maybe...” He nodded then disappeared.

The wind was wild, so was the sea right under the cliff. Waves clashed against the rock wall, the noise a loud frenzy, but to Severus it was calming. He was finally home.

He fished out the photo once again and looked at the picture then his eyes returned to study reality. Yes, it was much better even though this was stormy and darker. He turned around the paper and only then realized the small postscript on the bottom left corner of the picture.

Just one line, written by the same loopy and narrow handwriting he knew so well.

          PS: Do not forget to remember.

“I know, Albus.”He whispered desperately to the paper, his other hand clutching into a small golden ring under his robes. “I know I have to remember something. But what? And how?” He groaned, as the headache just got more painful. He put away the picture and walked towards the house.

“And why the bloody hell do you always have to be this mysterious?” Severus sighed exasperated to himself. Or maybe to the phoenix that was sitting on the white fence.

Chapter Text

“What was the title again?” Minerva asked, leaning over a long parchment, which was filled with small scratching handwriting and reached almost to the ground.

“Potions of the Mythical North.” Severus answered patiently. “There’s a whole chapter about Loki’s magic and his quite ingenious poisons and-“

“Yes, yes, you need it because St. Mungo’s has asked for your help. They told me when they asked me to contact you. Speaking of which, I am not your owl, Severus, quit hiding, it has been five years already.”

“I am not hiding, Minerva, I live a secluded life. I do not need The Daily Prophet constantly on my heels, observing everything I do.” Severus explained, pointing at the newspaper that, once again, had Potter on the front page with the caption, ‘The Saviour saves us again’. Another win in the Auror Department, it seemed.

Minerva looked up from the parchment and studied Severus for a moment. “He asked about you again a few months ago.” She remarked quietly, her face nothing just sharp eyes and pursed lips.

“I hope you told him what we agreed on.”

“Oh I did. He told me he knows I’m lying and I said, yes I am.”

“Minerva, please.” Severus sighed. “We’ve been over this. He’s better off without my friendship, he’s better off without anything related to me.”

“Refresh my memory will you Severus, why exactly do you think that?”

“The last time we spent more time together, he almost got put into Azkaban while attempting to help me stay out of that horrid place. I would rather not risk it again.”

“He will not get imprisoned just because you talk to him, Severus.”

Not happening, Minerva.” Severus insisted.

“Well, it will have to happen if you want that book.” Minerva smiled evilly.

Severus frowned at the Headmistress, as he asked slowly and alarmed. “What do you mean?”

“Well Severus, as it seems, there are only two copies of this book you are looking for. The only one in Britain is part of the Black heritage.”

“Good, I’m sure we can make a deal with Black.” Severus nodded, already turning around.

“Severus,” Minerva chided, “do you even know where he currently resides?”

“A... valid point. Do you?”

Minerva laughed. “I’m sorry Severus but I’m afraid I can't help you with that.” Severus recognized this as the very sentence he asked Minerva to tell Potter in case the boy would ever inquire about him.

“You wicked witch.” Severus remarked. “Tell me.”

“I couldn't even if wanted to. But I don't even want to. Talk to Harry, Severus, he can help you.”

“And pray tell, why can't you?”

“I am not their Secret Keeper.” The Headmistress answered simply.

“Oh,” was Severus’ only answer. “What about the other one? Where is the other copy?” He asked suddenly.

“In Bulgaria.”

“Who has it?”

Minerva looked at him incredulously. “You would seriously rather go to Bulgaria and look up a stranger than face Potter? What scares you so much about that boy, Severus?”

“I’m not scared of Potter!” Severus flared up. That was the truth, he wasn’t scared of Potter. He was scared of the feelings he had for the boy when they last met. “Who has the book, Minerva?”

“It belongs to the Oblansk family. And before you go thinking he will just give it you, think about its rarity and also should I remind you that you do not even speak Bulgarian, while he does not speak English.”

“But you do,” Severus smiled. “You speak Bulgarian, don't you, Minerva.”

“Ah I’m afraid, I have forgotten much of it over the years. Old, senile mind I have, you see. I don't think I could recall even a word anymore.”

Severus huffed staring at Minerva with wide eyes and speechless. This woman and her maddening tactics to reach whatever she wanted would be the death of Severus.

“Good thing, you have an available copy right here in England. Twelve Grimmauld Place was the address if you have forgotten.” Minerva smiled at him sweetly but Severus felt he could spit venom at that second.

The tall man looked at the silently sleeping portrayal of Albus Dumbledore and pointed a long finger at the old bugger. “She learned too much from you, Albus.” He fumed, knowing that the Headmaster would hear him.

“I take that as a compliment.” Minerva nodded, scrolling up the parchment and charming it back to the school library.

“It wasn’t one.” Severus murmured as he turned away from the infuriating woman just in time to catch a pair of twinkling blue eyes winking at him.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry quietly hummed as the paintbrush in his hand moved on the wall. Another room was almost ready under the roof of Grimmauld Place. He had started clearing the whole house systematically after he was admitted to the Auror Program. Sirius let him do anything he wanted with the place. As he was perfectly happy with Remus and Teddy in the Wolfden, he did not have any intension to return to this place ever. So after his first day, Harry returned to this hollow house and decided, it had to change. He could never live alone in a shady and grim place like this, so if he was to live here, a renovation was in order.

With a lot of help from Kreacher, the house started to take on a new face. Almost every day after Harry returned from the training, numb from the exercises and mentally tired from all the new information, he pulled out his painting brush and worked on the walls until his arms fell off, or assorted the furniture and other items into two groups, namely stay or go. The go group had many sub classifications, as it was the bigger pile after each day, such as dangerous, charity, orphanage, or trash. He was very grateful when he noticed that Kreacher had left behind his habit of nicking stuff from the mountains of plunder. The elf made the clutter disappear to the right place according to its purpose at the end of every day, and Harry could have a calm dinner. Day after day, they worked next to each other in silent companionship reorganizing and renewing every tiny spot in the old house. The only time Kreacher left the room sulkily was when Harry repainted the Black Family Tree in the saloon. He disappeared for an hour or two but Harry wasn’t worried. It was almost ten in the evening when the house elf returned and again helped with the clearing up. Harry saw from the corner of his eyes that Kreacher, staring at the now empty, white wall, wiped away a teardrop before he returned to his job.

Four years after that, in the house’s point of view, fateful evening Harry was living in a place that even if it wasn’t exactly something he would call home, it was still a nice house, liveable, not at all dim but brightly lit, and spacious. It was equipped with a modern kitchen, a nice and bright living room, many adequately painted but mostly empty guest bedrooms, four bathrooms – out of which only two was operational at the moment, his master bedroom, his workroom, the library and a potion lab in the attic he needed for his job. But his two favourite rooms in the house weren’t any of those but the two areas he created solely for his godson. One of them was the little boy’s own bedroom, with a huge and soft bed that had the shape of a broom. Here, one wall was covered with dragons blazing fire, centaurs running wildly and fairies and pixies flying over endless green lands, while wizards and witches on broomsticks zoomed after them trying to catch them, or in the front running from the mischievous creatures. The other side was a huge sea filled with numerous magical and non-magical beasts, from mermaids – Harry preferred the muggle version of them – to whales, flying seahorses, hippocampuses, grindylows or dolphins and even a Chinese water dragon swam across the wall occasionally. Harry felt very proud when on a Sunday afternoon, he, Ron and Hermione finally finished the two magical walls and lied against the bed to observe the many creatures roaming across the two sides of the room. Harry only had the ceiling to finish, which he charmed to show fluffy and cirrus clouds during daytime, then twinkling stars at night.

The other room was what Sirius simply called The Playground. Where previously the Black Family Tree was, now a puzzle revealed itself, illustrating sometimes the Wolfden, or showing an enlarged photo of Harry’s godson and his daddies. But it was quite easy to charm it into anything else the boy wished, even though the little devil still needed help to finish the task of organizing eight puzzle pieces correctly. The Playground, as its name also revealed, was where Teddy spent his time playing all day long while residing at Grimmauld Place for one night every month. All his toys, including his little racing broom he got from his Uncle Harry, lived in that room, waiting to be joined with for some fun.

It was one of those nights again, Harry thought with a smile as he looked out of the window to the brightly shining Saturday forenoon. His windows were open as he worked in one of the guestrooms, trying to make it more suitable for human habitability.

Someone knocked downstairs, and after putting down the brush carefully, Harry swept his paint covered hands onto his shirt, as nothing mattered to that piece of clothing anymore. He walked down, relentlessly trying to get the whiteness from his arms and fingers, thinking about who the visitor might be. Sirius was still early, he usually didn't drop his godson until about two in the afternoon. Maybe Hermione or Ron, but he hoped this wasn’t about the wedding. He didn't want to convince his best friends all over again about the stupidity of this cold feet, they seemed to feel recently. Wasn’t really a surprise, Harry had to admit though, this being the very day before the big event.

He opened the front door and the sunshine blinded him for a second. He blinked but he still couldn't believe his eyes. He blinked again.

“Morning.” The deep voice resonated in him.

“Uh,” was all he could muster for a moment. He wanted to say something else, he wanted to welcome the man or anything really, a simple hello would have done it, but nothing else came out. He shook his head, trying hard not to stare and opened the door wider. “Come on in,” he added quietly, not to wake Mrs. Black, while motioning with his hand.

Severus Snape stepped in with all his darkness and they walked into the kitchen where they could speak freely without the anger of that mad woman.

“So... uhm...” Harry started eloquently and hence mortified, though Snape didn't seem to notice his clumsiness, as he was watching the new interior design of Twelve Grimmauld Place. Harry took a deep breath to speak again, with more elegance this time, if possible. “Hello.”

His older professor snapped his eyes to him, the black orbs seemed to perceive every spot on Harry’s cloth, which he had many of given this was his painting outfit. He became more aware of the white paint coating his fingers, and suddenly realized that probably half his face was covered with it too, as he had scratched his nose with those hands several times during the day already. To do something with his hands, he rubbed his neck then comprehended this probably wasn’t his best idea as he was sure he just smeared more paint on his skin.

“Sit. Coffee?” He asked then, desperate to do something.

“Yes, please.” Came the answer and Snape sounded as though he was craving the drink. Maybe he was as uncomfortable as Harry was; after all, they hadn’t seen each other since the day of the verdict. Well, that was a lie, they did meet at the Ministry Ball where Snape, Harry and the rest of the Phoenixes, as the papers had grown to call them, received their Order of Merlin titles.

“Just... wash your hands beforehand, Potter, please. However to be honest a quick shower would do better. Or a lengthy bath, really, if you’re already in the bathroom.” Snape teased and Harry was about to get angry when he noticed the small smile at the edge of the thin lips. Teasing yes, but not a sneer as it used to be.

“Shut it,” He growled back but trotted to the sink and rinsed his hands thoroughly. He prepared the coffee and added the milk and a bit of cinnamon to his before he turned back to the Potions Master and handed him his mug. “I guess you like it just as black as anything else.” He grinned.

“Indeed, Potter. Perfect observation as... oh wait. Finally a perfect observation.” The man corrected and Harry took a deep breath not to slap him however, he was smiling. This was nice, it was good that they didn’t have to return to the hatred. He sat down to the other side of the table and drank a bit of his coffee.

“Are you going to catch up on five years of mockery?” Harry asked and there was a slight cutting edge to his voice. “Or will you tell me what I can do for you? I’m sure you’re not here for a nice chitchat.”

“I apologize,” Snape nodded drily and Harry realized he more than likely managed to offend him already.

“I didn't mean it like that,” Harry rushed to clarify. “You’re more than welcome for a chitchat if that’s what you’re here for. But that’s not really you. So I’m just... curious I guess.”

“You’re absolutely right, I’m not here on a social call. I’m in need of a book, that’s currently in your godfather’s possession. I would like to talk to him about borrowing or buying it from him.” Snape explained still stiffer than what Harry would prefer.

“That’s not going to happen.” Harry laughed and was forced to realize once again that he wasn’t talking to a friend, whatever Snape was, Harry couldn't consider him as that, so he had to step back a little. The Potion Master frowned and Harry could almost feel the air becoming colder, as the man stood from the table.

“In that case-“ Icy growl came from the other side and Harry leaned forward fast to snatch Snape’s hand in hope of stopping him before he could vanish for five years again.

“No, no, please sit back down. You can have the book.” The younger man said quickly and felt a relieved smile on his lips as his previous professor sat back on the chair cautiously. “It’s just... for one, Sirius would never give it you, I think he still has that childish streak in him and two, everything in here is basically mine now as you can see, I did a bit of a cleaning and reorganizing here. Sirius doesn’t have anything to do with this place anymore. So it’s me you have to ask about any book. And you don't have to ask, of course you can have it.”

“You don't even know which book I’m talking about.” Snape leaned back with a raised eyebrow.

“It must be a rare one, if you could get it anywhere else, you wouldn’t be here. But I don't mind. You can have it. Which one do you need?” Harry stood up wondering if it would be one, he had read already.

“Healing Potions of the Mythical North.” Snape answered, his eyebrow even higher.

Harry just nodded; it was one of the most valuable books in the house, now he understood the Potion Master’s concern about maybe not getting the volume. “That’s a good one.” Harry remarked, already turning around. “It has a great chapter about Loki. That guy was some first class asshole but Merlin, was he clever.”

He stopped in the doorway and looked back at the dark man, who was still sitting at the desk, eyeing him suspiciously.

“Are you coming or what?” Harry grinned.

He escorted Snape to the room that was his private sanctuary but all the others simply saw it as the Library. Three walls were covered with books, the fourth with windows. He walked to the furthest side and searched for a minute. His eyes found the tattered green hardback and he pulled it out, and then held it out to Snape whom he expected to be standing behind him.

The older man however, wasn’t standing anywhere near him. Snape looked like a kid who was just released in a candy shop, stepping from one book to the other, touching them softly, caressing the spines, his black eyes shining with awe. Harry had to repress a light chuckle, not to disturb the man in wonder.

“Some of these volumes...” Snape started then noticed Harry’s watchful gaze and the book that was still held out for him. For a second Harry thought he blushed, but that was impossible. “... are usually quite  hard to find.”

“Not in the black market.” Harry remarked. “You shouldn’t forget where most of these books come from.”

Snape took the Healing Potions of the Mythical North and started paging it. “Is this what you wanted?” Harry queried. When the man nodded wordlessly, Harry smiled. “Good. Have fun with it. But there’s a weird blotch on one of the pages about Loki, I wouldn’t touch that.”

“That’s all?” Snape snapped up his gaze that was tinted with surprise.

“I don't think the book would be dangerous in any other way. I tested it for curses before reading it.” Harry stated.

“I mean, are you lending me a book with such inestimable value, without any conditions?”

“I didn't think it was necessary,” Harry smiled, “to tell you, of all people, to take care of it. But if you want conditions, let’s give you conditions. Severus Snape, swear me on... whatever that is important to you that you will take good care of this book and give it back when you don't need it anymore.”

“Really, Potter?” Snape sneered and Harry had to smile on the familiar expression. “When I don't need it anymore? Swear on whatever is important to me? Do you even have an idea how much is the worth of this one single leather-bound volume?”

“I honestly don't know.” Harry shrugged. “But it’s not like it matters.”

“Wh-“ Snape looked as if he would be close to fainting. “What do you mean it doesn’t matter. Of course it matters.”

“No,” Harry shook his head, walking out of the room. “No it does not. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I doubt you have any intension of harming this book. You would take better care of it than its own writer probably. And if I need it again... well at least I’ll have a reason to visit you.”

“Fool...” Snape sighed behind him as he followed Harry out of the room. “Is there anything at least I can... do in exchange.”

Harry stopped dead in the hallway, countless thoughts on what exactly his ex-professor could do in exchange wildly running in his mind, however none of which being decent enough to voice them out loud. He cleared his throat and turned around slowly to face the man; maybe that would help him to come up with something that wouldn’t be completely inappropriate to ask of his former Potions Master to do.

“There is one thing...” He said recalling the only idea that presented itself, however he knew it would be impossible. “The painting of Mrs. Black in the hallway. We tried everything to get it down, but we just can't cancel the Epoximise Charm. Maybe you have heard about something. Or could brew up something...”

Snape seemed to actually consider the idea, though Harry was sure he would just refuse it. No one could-

“Have you attempted to maybe get the wall taken down?” Snape asked and Harry glared at him.

“And what, say hello to the neighbours?” Harry reacted on impulse.

Snape actually laughed and Harry felt as though the world had just turned upside down. “Not that way, you idiot. I could brew a potion, which we could use to infuse into the wall. It would crumble the first few inches of the bricks thus the painting would come off with a part of the wall itself. You would have to rebuild that part of the wall, I give you that, but maybe it’s worth a try?”

Harry stared at Snape with eyes wide open, his gaze abashed. That was actually a good idea.

“Or not. I could think about something else...” Snape offered when Harry still didn't speak after a minute, just kept gawking at the taller man. “Potter?”

“Has anyone ever told you how bloody brilliant you are?” Harry heard himself asking and wanted to hit himself on the head.

“Sarcasm, P-“

“Not sarcasm, Snape, I meant it.” Harry could see Snape actually puff up as he almost unleashed another angry rant at Harry, who was ready for it, however not as patient now. “Four years, that’s how long we’ve been trying to come up with something. Ron with his spells, Hermione with her books, Luna with all her weirdness, Ginny with her tactics, Neville with his plants, Sirius with brutal force... Do you have any idea how many knifes and hammers we broke on that painting? And then you dance in here with your potions, which we did consider by the way, and you give me a possible solution after one minute into the problem. So no, that wasn’t sarcasm.” Harry explained with an accusing finger in Snape’s face. “And please don't get angry at me for everything I say. I’m still... acclimatising to you. I changed a lot you know, I had kind of grown up here while you were hiding in your den. I became an adult, whatever that means, and now I’m trying to figure out a way to handle you. You’re not my professor anymore, you’re not my enemy, but I can't even call you just an acquaintance as we’ve been through a lot more together for that word to describe whatever this is,” Harry motioned between them with his hand before going on talking. “But Merlin forbid, I call you a friend and even talk to you as I would to a friend because at that moment you’re ready to bite off my head. I swear it was easier to handle a fifty foot Horntail than you.”

“I wasn’t aware of the fact that you were handling me.”

Harry tried to calm himself before he answered, “I’m not, that’s the problem.”

“I’m here, I offered my help. Whatever else do you want of me, Potter?” Snape inquired.

“Well, blimey, I don't know. Maybe if you didn't get angry at me every minute or so, that would be lovely.” Harry scoffed.

“Maybe if you didn't anger me every minute or so, I wouldn’t get angry.” Snape pointed out and Harry felt a sudden urge to hit something.

“Why are you doing this? We’ve been cool. We haven’t argued ever since the beginning of your trials, not really at least.”

“We haven’t argued because we haven’t seen each other, Potter.”

“And whose fault is that?”

“I don't remember you knocking on my doorstep, boy.”

“I’m twenty-three, I’m no boy anymore, Snape.” Harry stepped closer. “And, of course you haven’t seen me knocking because you never told me where you live. No matter how many times I asked Minerva she didn't tell me. I know you told her not to!”

“And don't you have an owl, Potter, that could find me wherever I am? Aren't you the one who wanted to be my pen pal after the verdict?”

“Oh for the love of Magic,” Harry cried, “I never wanted to be your fucking pen pal, Snape, I want to be your friend!”

“That you already are!” Snape shouted then added quietly, “Possibly the only one, besides that maddening woman.”

There was a moment of silence, which felt like an eternity. Harry stared at the tall man in front of him as if he was seeing Snape for the first time and probably he indeed was. First time in a while at least, and he didn't mean the five years they had spent without the other’s company.

“What did you just say?” He asked softly, glad that their shouting match was over but still not sure if he was now making things up, or what he just seemed to hear was actually what came out of his former professor’s mouth.

“I do consider you as a friend, Potter.” Snape sighed, driving a hand through his long black hair. Harry noticed only now, how long exactly it was; it reached way below the man’s shoulders.

“Then why didn't you tell me where you live? I could have visited, you know. I could have made your sentence... less lonely.”

Snape shook his head, looked at Harry then on the ground clearly torn between opening up and not wanting anyone to ever know who he really was.

“Tell me, please. Let me understand. If you think of me as a friend, you know you can trust me.”

“I don't want this.” Snape admitted.

“You mean our friendship?” Harry could feel his throat tightening as he waited for the answer.

“I mean the arguing. How long have I been here, an hour maybe? And this is the result.” Snape stepped away and leaned against the wall. “Please, Potter, try to understand. I could not let you visit. You do not know how it feels to kill someone, to murder a good man. My soul... is in pieces. It is shattered. Broken. Torn. I tried to accept what I have done, and on most days, I can, but I had to be punished, Potter, because I committed the crime. I know what you want to say,” Snape raised a hand to stop Harry from interrupting him now that words were flooding out of him. “That I did what I had to, that I was ordered but in here,” Snape pointed at his heart, “it feels different, you see. In here, it is darker. I could not let you or anyone else console me, when I felt I had to expiate for what I have done. The Ministry and the Wizarding World might have thought my punishment was over with that six months but not me. I felt otherwise.”

“I see,” Harry said kindly after a moment of quiet. He didn't know what else to say.

“I think I thought about you as a friend ever since the verdict. You have done a great deal for me and you believed me, and trusted me, and no one other than Albus offered me that kind of relationship. Whatever I have done, no matter how much I shouted at you, you stayed and helped me. And I appreciate it. I have never told you this, Potter, but I truly do.” Snape looked at Harry for a second but then his gaze dropped to the floor again, as if it was too heavy to keep it on Harry.

“You accuse me of snapping at you. But of course. The last I had seen you, you were just a boy, broken, with a dark shadow in your eyes that screamed you have seen more than anyone, and the worst that could be imagined, but just a boy none the less. And now... you say you have changed, but you do not know just how much. The barely eighteen year old brat stands now proudly in front of me, he faces me and does not quail under my gaze.” Snape murmured. “You said you cannot handle me? You have always been insolent; authority never frightened you. Me, on the other hand, I have treated you as a student as long as I can remember, a subordinate, if you will.” The black eyes finally shifted back onto Harry and seemed to be fixed there. “And now, you stand here as my equal.”

Harry wanted to say something or to move closer to the man but he suddenly could not. He simply did not know what would be the right course of action. Hermione would know, she was amazing with people, but not Harry. Therefore, he just remained there, stayed where he was, as Severus Snape’s equal.

Snape sighed deeply before he went on. “I can assure you, Potter, you are just as confusing to me, as I am to you.”

“I’m glad if...” Harry started considering his possibilities for a moment then he reached out with his right hand. “...you consider me as an equal, I feel even honoured, to be honest. And I want to be your friend, but I know there isn’t a magic word for it. I suggest we figure this out slowly, there’s no need to rush now. What do you think?”

“Acceptable.” Snape smiled slightly taking the hand that was reached out towards him.

They stood hand in hand for long second, eyes buried into the other. Harry didn't know if Snape was waiting for anything or was just considering Harry, but the young man didn't mind the gentle touch so he didn't move away and kept his eyes firmly on the black orbs. His mind was lost on the words that had been spoken in this hallway during the last couple of minutes, not yet sure how he felt about them. Proud yes, he had admired Snape for a long time, and if the man called him his equivalent that indeed would make Harry feel pleased. The thought of the two of them being friends caused a surge of giddiness to rush to his head. Several other feelings and sensations passed his mind and heart but he couldn't let himself dwell on those with the older man in such close proximity.

“Why did we even start arguing?” Harry asked with a small, placatory smile on his lips, as their hands slipped apart.

“Because you finally realized my brilliance.” Snape answered smugly.

Harry nodded, laughing. “Speaking of which, when do you think you’ll have time to brew that potion?”

“I could start on it as soon as I go back to my potions lab but it would take about half a day for it to be ready.” Snape estimated.

“Uhm... You could brew it here, too.”

“What?” Snape drawled, watching Harry amused.

“I have a lab too. I mean it’s not a big deal, but it’s well equipped and there’s a high quality Potions Ingredient shop not far from here who-.”

“You? Have a potion lab? In this very house?” Snape blinked. “I do not mean to offend our newly formed friendship already, but you... really?”

“I am an Auror, you know. A highly trained one, for your information. I’m the Dark Arts expert in our team.” Harry explained, walking upstairs, towards the attic.

“I believed all the Aurors had to be experts in the Dark Arts. I thought that was a sort of requirement for the job.” Severus mused.

“Well, basic knowledge, yes.” Harry explained. “But every team consists of five Aurors with special knowledge: two Duellers, one Healer, one Dark Arts and the Leader, who’s usually the Tactician and also the one who keeps us together as a team.”

“Are you telling me, you are not the Leader of your squad? How could Weasley and Granger let that happen?” Snape teased.

“Well, easily, given that in our team, Ron’s the Leader. And he’s absolutely brilliant at it. I’m only responsible for everything that’s Dark. Poisons, Potions, Hexes that needs to be broken, Jinxes that needs to be lifted, whatever you can imagine. And of course there’s the usual, snatching bad people stuff, but that’s everyone’s job.”

“And pray tell, how many people have you killed, injured or sickened with giving them the wrong potion?” Snape asked as they stood in front of the door that led to Harry’s lab.

“None.” The young man answered, opening the door.

His lab wasn’t a big deal yes, but it was high quality. It was a spacious room, one wall covered with various dead animal parts swimming in colourful preservatives and drawers filled with dried ingredients, the other packed with equipments and books. There were huge windows on the roof for fresh air after badly ended experiments and in the corner, there was a small working table for Harry’s notes.

Snape walked in the room and suddenly Harry felt like he was forgotten. The man once again felt in his element. His dark robe swam around him as turned and shifted to observe another dead animal, or an unusual item.

“Well, I guess, you like it then.” Harry smirked mostly to himself, as Snape was so busy rummaging through the drawers he only murmured as an answer. “If you need anything, I’ll be in the kitchen.”

There still wasn’t any response. Harry grinned at the now squatting man who was scrutinizing the sharpness of his knifes. “Play carefully,” he added mockingly before he turned around.

He barely made two steps outside, when he heard Snape scream “Potter,” like a wounded animal.

The door banged to the cupboard deafeningly, as Harry rushed back into the room just to find himself face to face with Snape who was almost completely pale, except his red tinted cheeks.

“What happened? Are you okay?” Harry asked looking for any indicators about what transpired in the room.

Snape disregarded his worry and held up an old, worn copy of Advanced Potion-Making. “I’m fairly sure this does not belong to you, Potter.” Snape whispered in low, angry voice.

“Well, technically...” Harry started but this time it was Snape, who cut in his sentence.

“Not even technically,” Snape said, opening up the book on its first page, “because, you see, it says right here: This book belongs to the Half-Blood Prince. Are you the Half-Blood Prince, Potter?”

“No, I’m-“

“No, indeed, you’re not. Because who is the Half-Blood Prince, Potter?”

“You.” Harry answered in resignation.

“Exactly. I am the Half-Blood Prince. So why, I ask, does my book reside on your desk, Potter, when by all means it should be locked up in the Ministry’s evidence storeroom?”

“Well, I sort of... nicked it.” Harry admitted bashfully.

“You... imbecile.” Snape hissed furiously, smacking Harry’s head with the book, before turning around with such vehemence, even his black robe gave Harry a slap.

’He will not get imprisoned just because you talk to him, Severus’, she says! My ass, he won't!” Snape cited sardonically, meaning every word most likely only to himself, as Harry didn't have a single clue what he was on about. “That imprudent... rush... idiotic... Argh!”

“I’ll be in the kitchen then.” Harry whispered almost inaudibly but barely able to stifle his grin after watching his former professor raging around the lab for a few seconds. Snape’s black robe billowed behind him like a cloud of anger Harry wished to avoid, as the man prepared the ingredients for the potion. Harry closed the door behind him but he could still hear Snape’s irritated murmurs.

“We’re taking this friendship so slowly, we’re moving backwards...” He sighed.

 

o.O.o

 

Grimmauld Place had turned into something new Severus contemplated, stepping out from the lab. It wasn’t the grim place he had visited ever so often while working for the Order but a nice house, clean, organized, calm. Nothing, of what Severus felt at the moment. He was still irritated at Potter’s idiocy concerning that damn book. Stealing evidence, what was Potter thinking? What was so important in that old copy that required such imprudent measurements to acquire it? He sighed heavily as he arrived to the kitchen, where he expected the young man to be.

Yes, Potter was in the kitchen. No, Severus wasn’t expecting this picture.

It was hard enough to stifle the rising arousal in his body when he first saw the grown man Potter became, wearing worn clothes, with white paint smeared all around his tanned skin. While these five years had done almost nothing with Severus, except those few more new wrinkles, with Potter, the situation was something else. Severus could hardly call him a boy anymore with his strong jaw, which was slightly darkened by the small stubble, shoulders wide enough that the paint covered shirt, which fell loosely around his slim waist, stretched on them. His glasses all the same but his eyes seemed older, still bright but with more wisdom behind it. Eyebrows thick, hair styled into a mess, providing him a nice ‘just shagged’ feature, Severus wholeheartedly supported.

This time in the kitchen, it was different, however. The hair still a mess, but not styled, just messy from wetness, brushed up and aside, as if it had irritated Potter and he had just swept it off his forehead. Not in the worn painting outfit anymore unfortunately, though the clean, dark blue jeans that had holes in it as the design, and fit ever so perfectly on Potter’s firm ass also won Severus’ approval. Simple black shirt, stretched on his back, with a red logo on the arm, a wand and blade crossed. Severus recognized it as the sign of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. Potter was barefoot in the kitchen, the muscles in his shoulder tensing every time as he was kneading something in front of him with precise movements.

In summary, attractive did not qualify the younger man’s features anymore. Would pound him hard into the nearest horizontal or vertical surface was a more descriptive idiom to illustrate how Severus felt upon entering the kitchen. But friends did not do that with each other, so Severus remained where he was, and leaned casually against the door.

“That does not smell... inedible.” He noted quietly as his head finally cleared and became willing to perceive other impressions as well, not just Potter.

The young man laughed and turned towards the pot that was cooking on the stove, giving out an amazing aroma, that made Severus’ stomach rumble with hunger. He realized he had been here for hours, working on the potion and it was way past lunchtime already. The next moment he noticed Potter coming towards him, with a spoon full of food.

“Open up,” The young man smirked holding the spoon to Severus' tightly pressed lips.

“I do not like being fed, Potter.” Severus reacted and reached to take the spoon but only managed to grab Potter’s hand in the process, as the imbecile didn't let go of the silverware. He decided not to notice the warm sensation that rushed through him with the unexpected contact.

Potter disregarded his protest and pushed the spoon inside with a questioning look. The stew was great, the meat tender, the taste mildly spiced and just delicious. Severus only raised an eyebrow, not letting the flattering words escape him.

“I take it you like it.” Potter smiled, dropping the spoon into the sink, then going back to the dough he was kneading. “Teddy is coming over for tonight. That’s his favourite.”

Severus tried to repress the rush of jealousy that wanted to crawl across his body, however pointlessly. “I see.”

“Would you like to maybe stay and have lunch with us?” Potter asked with a kind smile.

“I don't imagine your boyfriend would enjoy my company.” Severus sneered as meeting Potter’s boyfriend was the last thing he needed now, that he was suddenly forced to fight with his inner monster that wanted to devour the younger man.

“My boyfriend?” Potter laughed out loud and Severus felt offended.

“Shall I apologize for not being up-to-date in your social life?” Severus asked mockingly, pointing at a Witch Weekly magazine with Potter and Weasley on the front page, which lay next to the fireplace, clearly meant for burning.

“Oh no it’s not that,” Potter still laughed, and it drove Severus mad. “It’s just... boyfriend.” He chuckled.

Severus felt slightly awkward about making such rushed assumptions about Potter’s sexuality. He wasn’t sure if someone had mentioned it, or he read about it in the papers but he could swear Potter was gay. Well, he was wrong as it seemed. “I did not mean to insult your sexuality.” He apologized bitterly.

“No, I am gay, it’s just...” Potter laughed some more and Severus wanted to strangle him “... boyfriend.”

Severus dropped himself on one of the chairs, right in front of Potter, before he drawled, “Care to explain what is so amusing in assuming you have a boyfriend then?”

“It’s funny because of whom you are assuming to be my boyfriend.” Potter answered, waving with a flour covered hand. “The fact that I don't have one, something Hermione seems rather keen to point out every now and then, is not funny, more like pathetic.” The young man admitted with a sour smile.

“You’re still young, Potter.” Severus noted not so bitterly now, and he hated to hear that in his voice. The beast in him purred contently now that he knew there was no current competition.

“That’s exactly it,” Potter spoke, hands firmly rubbing the dough. “I should be out there shagging my way through half of London. Instead I’m in here, making bread.”

As Severus watched the enticing movements of Potter’s hand, he was close to growling out that Potter was very much welcomed to shag his way through Severus any time. This of course, was something entirely impossible, and would lead to an awkward conversation, so Severus refrained from uttering that remark loudly. He should really stop these maddening thoughts about the young man before he drove himself insane. “At least your cooking is acceptable.” He noted with a hint of smile.

“Thanks.” Potter grinned. “I would be okay with it, it’s just a bit awkward when everyone I know goes in pairs everywhere and I’m there alone. Like tomorrow.” He sighed.

“Why is tomorrow so special.” Severus inquired.

“Oh right!” Potter cried up, slapping himself on the forehead, leaving a nice flour imprint of his fingers there. Severus thought it was amusing so he forgot to mention it. “You don't know about the wedding, do you? Hermione and Ron, tomorrow at two, at the Burrow.” Potter beamed happily. “It’s going to be amazing. There’s going to be so much food, we’re going to be eating it for a week. Kreacher is over there right now, helping Molly. You should come.”

“Oh, that’s tomorrow?” Severus mused.

“You know about it, then?” Potter asked surprised, leaning into the table with his hip.

“Yes, I do. I received the invitation.”

“How...?” Potter seemed to contemplate something for a second. “Oh right, the flowers.” He grinned then. It was Severus’ turn to look at the other with astonishment.

“You know of the flowers?”

Potter had the cheek to smirk. “Of course I do. Best friends, remember?”

After he woke up in the hospital with the bloody boy duelling next to him, they still kept him there for two weeks, just for monitoring, one of the nurses told him. It was two quite boring weeks, interrupted by only Minerva and Potter’s regular visits. Two birds were his customary guests as well, Fawkes, who more like lived with him in the ward and a brown owl who came every morning with the fresh copy of the Prophet and a single Tiger Lily. He didn't realize who the mysterious sender was until he was released. A small and quiet group waited for him in front of St. Mungo’s, Potter and Minerva of course, the Weasley boy, and Kingsley with a letter from his godson, and Hermione Granger with a bouquet of Tiger Lilies. She smiled at him kindly and Severus had probably never felt so surprised in his life. It was mostly this gesture from the girl, which made him accept their help during the trials. Ever since then, Severus was sending a single flower to the girl every week, still trying to figure out, which one was her favourite.

“How did she know which flower to send me?” He asked the question that had been haunting him for years now. Tiger Lilies were his favourite, but he had never told this to anyone.

Potter blushed and that surprised Severus yet again. The young man returned to the dough before he answered. “She asked me.”

“And how exactly did you know they are my favourite flowers?” The Potions Master inquired puzzled.

“Really? Those are actually your favourites?” Potter asked back and only answered when he saw Severus’ nod. “I figured they would remind you of mom. Hermione suggested the white ones, but I... I don't know, mom was a red head and besides... I always imagined her... you know... a bit fierce.  The way she stood up for you when dad and Sirius provoked you... It just made sense for me.” Potter shrugged. “Tiger Lilies reminded me of her, and you loved her. So she went with it.”

Severus eyed the other for a second. Potter clearly felt awkward talking about his mother to his old professor and Severus suspected why.

“Yes, I loved your mother.” Severus admitted and Potter nodded as if his suspicions were confirmed. “She was my first real and best friend. But nothing more.” Green eyes snapped at him and Severus held Potter’s gaze.

“So you never...” The young man faltered.

“When I was eleven I may have confused friendship with love, but I later realized that my preferences lay elsewhere.” Severus admitted.

“Oh. So you’re... you're gay too?”

“Indeed I am. A revelation brought to my attention after Lucius Malfoy pushed his tongue down my throat in fifth year. We experimented with Firewhiskey. It did not end well.” Severus smiled as the memories came back.

Potter watched him for a while with a small grin but then suddenly blushed to a deep red and turned his head quickly back to the dough. Severus felt himself flush too when the realization struck him.

“Are you imagining me kissing Lucius, Potter?” He snapped at the idiot Gryffindor.

“No!” Potter answered mortified. “Not kissing.” He added silently after a moment.

“Oh Merlin, Potter, grow up already!” Severus cried burying his head in his palm.

“Oh come on, I haven’t had any in ages. It’s not like I do it on purpose!” Potter yelled back desperately.

Severus had to grasp into the edge of the desk to keep himself from saying something even more idiotic than what had just transpired. Without stopping the inner mantra of ‘I am not going to offer it, I am not going to offer it’, he looked at the other and murmured, “Idiot.”

The knock on the door saved both of them from more vivid pictures. Potter swept down the flour and dough from his hands and rushed to the entrance.

Severus heard a deeper voice and a cheerful giggle, then Potter’s laugh. The guests, one of them probably the mysterious Teddy, came towards the kitchen. Severus heard running footsteps then a blur of blue and khaki rushed into the area. A small hand appeared and started searching for something along the edge of the table, until it found the bag of flour. The next moment the bag disappeared under the table.

The something giggled underneath then said in a barely understandable voice, “Boooom.” And there was whiteness all around Severus.

“Noooo, Teddy, nooo.” A way too familiar and hated tone sounded up at the other side of the room and Severus growled. Then something bit his leg.

He jumped away from the table with a sudden move, just in time to see the blue and khaki blur hush away in the flour cloud.

There was a sudden wind inside and the kitchen cleared revealing Potter in the middle with his wand out, behind him Black, eyeing something under the table. “Come here pup and-“ But Severus would never find out what “pup” was supposed to do as Black noticed him and started growling like a feral dog. “What’s he doing here?” He asked from Potter, who reacted with a frown.

“Helping me.” Potter reached under the table. “Come here, Teddy, let’s says bye-bye to daddy, okay?”

“Helping you how?” Black inquired irritated.

“By finally getting rid of your dearest mother. That’s the only thing in the house that still drives me mad.”

“No one can get that painting down, we tried.”

“If anyone, he can. Let him try, Sirius.”

“I don't like him being here. Especially not today.” Sirius spitted, not even looking at Severus who disregarded the conversation entirely and watched the hand that reached out from under the table and was snatching towards the edge of his robe. He pulled the black fabric closer to his leg, slightly scared that maybe the hand would come closer too, but it remained still hidden, though it didn't give up trying.

“Well, good thing you have to leave, then.” Potter smirked at his godfather. “Don't worry, I’ll take good care of him, like always.”

Black just sighed then nodded. Potter kneeled down and reached out his arms towards the table. “Come here, you little pixie.”

The something under the table snickered again, and there was the sound of scurrying legs and the blue and khaki blur emerged from underneath, crashed into Potter and they both ended up on the ground, laughing.

The blur turned out to be a small boy, about two or maybe three years old, wearing a blue sweatshirt and khaki pants. His light brown, curly hair seemed almost blonde in the bright light, while his grin and innocent laughter was very catching and Severus found himself very soon smile at the picture of Potter throwing the boy up a bit then catching him.

“If you even-“ Black started talking to Snape, his eyes narrowing but Potter cut in.

“Sirius!” He snapped with a warning edge in his voice. “Snape is here as my guest, treat him as that! And he has no intension to hurt anyone, especially not your son, so please calm down.”

Severus just nodded slightly towards the general direction of the irritated father as his eyes followed the little mischief who quickly got bored when Potter stopped throwing him up and was now crawling under the table again, slowly trying to reach Severus or most likely his robe.

“Okay,” Black sighed. “Teddy, love, can daddy have a kiss before he leaves you here with Uncle Hally?”

“No.” Said the curly haired boy and Severus almost snorted.

“Stop calling me that, Sirius, it’s more than enough that he does.” Potter pouted, getting up.

“Sorry, habits.” Black noted, his mind clearly somewhere else. “Okay Teddy, daddy is going home then. See you tomorrow, son.” He turned towards the door and took a couple of feeble steps. Teddy didn't need more. He spurted from under the table and run to his dad, clutching him by the legs as firmly as his child hands let him. Black leaned down and took him up, then gave a big kiss on the boy’s head. “Take care of Uncle Harry for me, okay Teddy?”

“Aham.” The little one answered, smearing saliva on Black’s face, however Severus suspected that was actually a kiss from the boy.

“See you then, sweetheart.” Black gave the boy to Potter and nodded curtly towards Severus, who returned the gesture just as nicely. “I love you, Teddy.” He ruffled the boy’s hair, who giggled again.

“When are you picking him up tomorrow?” Potter asked as he walked with his godfather towards the entrance. “If you two want to have some rest, I can take him to the Burrow tomorrow. I’m going there about nine in the morning. He could play outside while we’re getting ready.”

“No need, I will be picking him up in the morning. You know how Remus reacts when he’s not around when he wakes up.” Black laughed.

The thick walls dulled the rest of the conversation and soon Snape heard the door close, then Potter appeared back in the kitchen, with the little boy still in his arms. He seemed to finally notice that Severus wasn’t just a new piece of equipment in the room but a living person and he suddenly became shy. As Potter walked closer with him, the boy buried his head into the man’s neck.

“Whuss.” Severus heard the boy say, but he didn't know what it meant or even in what language it was spoken in.

“Well Snape,” Potter was watching him expectantly, so the older man raised an eyebrow at him. “Answer the boy.”

“He was talking to m-? Wait that was a question?!” Severus snorted.

“He asked who you are.” Potter smiled at him patiently, fingers caressing the boy.

“He most certainly did not do that.”

“Snape, answer the kid.” Potter ordered with a rather firm tone, however he was still smiling.

“Severus Snape, Potions Master. Pleasure to meet you.” Severus obeyed immediately then cursed himself for it. He reached out a hand and waited for Teddy to shake it. But of course the boy only hid deeper into the concealing arms.

Potter nudged him slightly as he said in a gentle tone, “Come on dear, don't be shy.” That did the trick, Teddy reached out too, and shook Severus’ pointing finger. Then giggled again.

“Seeus.” The little minx chuckled and Potter started laughing too.

“He likes you.” The other man grinned at Severus who was eyeing the small, frail fingers on his.

“And you are?” The former professor asked the boy, tilting his head lightly.

The little one remained quiet, his hand now snatching towards Severus’ robe yet again.

“This is Teddy, my godson. Definitely not boyfriend.” Potter grinned and Severus damned his stupidity.

“Black or Lupin? Or both?”

“Haven’t you seen what a little devil, he is? He’s a true Black, I tell you. But he has both of them in there, don't you Teddy?” Upon hearing his name, the boy looked up at Potter with wide blue eyes. “Snape, I introduce you the heir of the Black and Lupin family: Thaddeus Romulus Black.” Potter announced laughing as the little boy started blowing saliva bubbles out of his mouth.

Severus snickered. “He unites the elegance and the grace of both families, I see. However, if the question is not too insensitive... Romulus? Is he... a werewolf too?” Severus inquired as politely as he could.

“Oh no, the full moon doesn’t affect him; that’s not why he got the name.” Potter smirked.

Before the man could reveal the story behind the naming, Teddy froze in his arms. He seemed to stare into the nothingness for a moment then he sneezed loudly. At that second the boy disappeared and a little wolf cub was in Potter’s hand. It had soft, brownish hair with a touch of black and white and darker brown in it.

“Now, this is why he’s Romulus.” Potter remarked, petting the cub, who was sniffing into his ear. Teddy froze again then turned back into human form.

“Interesting.” Severus managed to press out, as he was nearly rendered speechless by the episode. “Animagic at his age? Remarkable... Can he control it?”

“Well, yes and no. He can change into a wolf and back whenever he wants to, and believe me, he wants to fairly often, but when he’s suddenly scared or sneezes or stuff like that, he sometimes changes too.”

“That is...” Severus looked at the Gryffindor for help.

“Yeah, pretty awesome.” He grinned then turned to Teddy. “Are you hungry, buddy?”

“Aham.”

“Good, because I’m starving.” Potter growled. “Can you hold him, while I set the table? The oven is hot and if let him run around now, he will certainly try to crawl in there the moment I’m not watching him.”

Before Severus could say anything, he found himself standing in Potter’s kitchen with a handful of Black’s spawn.

“You’re staying for lunch then, right?” Potter asked with three plates in his hands.

Severus took a moment to analyse the situation. Should he stay for lunch with the man his body seemed to desire the most in the last couple of hours and that man’s wayward godson, who had already bitten Severus, had an abnormal attraction towards his black robes, and who was the son of his arch enemies. All Severus’ senses screamed no.

“Yes.” He answered.

They had a rather uneventful lunch given there was a two year old in their company, who Severus expected to make a mess out of eating. But Teddy was, if not even calm, but at least a good boy while eating. Potter assumed it was because of Severus’ threatening presence but this turned out to be a joke, as the boy was far from afraid of Severus.

As soon as Teddy was done with eating, he slipped under the table again. Not a moment went by and Severus felt something tugging at his robes. He stood up quickly, pulling the wolf pup out as well, who was munching on the edge of the fabric. Severus merely wanted to drag the robe out of the cage of the sharp teeth but instead he managed to jerk the wolf-boy up in the air, where he stayed numbly hanging by his teeth that were still clasped firmly into the fabric. Potter upon noticing the incident, simply laughed and only interfered when Severus yelled at him to please, control his godson’s animalistic urges.

Aside from this, it was a nice lunch. Severus asked about Potter’s friends and it turned out that the new legislation about forbidding the discrimination against half-breeds at workplaces, a topic Severus already read a lot about in the papers, was actually all Granger’s initiative. The clever witch was on a good road to have the Minister’s chair, Severus thought, but Potter assured him, Hermione currently enjoyed being a lawyer much more, than politics.

“Cookie?” Teddy chirped in from underneath the table, which seemed his favourite residing place in the kitchen. “I wanna cookie.”

“Say please.” Potter retorted with a smile, already standing up and walking towards the cupboard where he put the muffins he had baker earlier to cool down a bit.

“I wanna cookie, Uncle Hally.”

“Say please and you can have one.”

“Please?”

“Good boy.” Potter grinned. “Come here, let’s share the cookies with Snape, okay buddy?”

Snape expected the defiant “no” but to his surprise Teddy just said, “Okay...” and jumped back on his seat. Potter placed the muffins on the table and pushed the plate in front of the boy.

“Why don't you give one to Snape, Teddy?” He asked from the little one who just stared back at him confused. “To Seeus, I mean. Why don't you give one to Seeus?”

The boy grabbed one chocolate muffin and held it towards Snape, who accepted it a bit stunned. “Uncle Hally can have one too.” The little one mumbled then and put one in front of Potter.

“How generous of you.” The Gryffindor grinned at his godson.

“And Teddy too.” The boy said, putting the third one in front of himself. The muffins seemed exactly the same to Severus, yet Teddy seemed to take a big effort to choose one more out.

“Who’s that for, Teddy?” Potter inquired and Severus knew why. The boy was only allowed one muffin after lunch. “Is that for Moony Daddy?”

“No,” came the defiant answer, Severus liked so much.

“Then for Paffoo Daddy?”

“No.” The boy repeated. “Seeus.” He said then and held out the muffin towards Snape again, who looked at the godfather for conformation whether to take it or not.

“But Seeus already has one.” Potter noted, leaning towards his godson, who kept reaching towards Snape, his small arm barely covering one third of the distance.

“Teddy can has two cookie when Teddy is sad. Seeus is sad. He can has two.” The boy spoke and Snape stared at him while Potter laughed again.

“Well, they do say children are a good at observing people around them.” The younger man remarked and Snape wanted to slap both of them.

After the muffins got sorted out, Teddy’s attention was solely focused on his. He devoured it quite quickly then started eyeing Snape’s consolation price. Severus of course, noticed the interest but he also knew about the one cookie rule. So he had to wait for Potter to turn his back while doing the dishes, before he slithered his muffin to the boy, who grinned enthusiastically. When his small hands grasped into the soft muffin, his treacherous giggles uncovered Snape’s sneaky actions.

Potter just rolled his eyes. “Okay, but then you’re staying for play time too. I can’t handle an almost three year old wolf-boy, who is overdosed with chocolate all by myself. Maybe not even with you around.” He said with an accusing finger that was dripping foam pointed towards Snape.

“You seem to be forgetting that I was a teacher for seventeen years.” Severus remarked.

“Yes, teaching eleven year olds and up.  Not two year olds. On chocolate.” Potter laughed, turning his back.

“I think I will be able to handle one single child.” Severus leaned back, failing miserably in keeping his eyes strictly above Potter’s waist.

“Sugar rush. That’s all I’m saying.” Potter shrugged.

“It’s just one child, Potter. Or maybe two, if I count you in as well.” Snape smirked, taking in the wide shoulders and the messy hair.

Potter turned back towards him and grinned like a true Slytherin. “Oh really, Snape? Then tell me, where did that one child go, while you were eyeing the other one?”

Severus looked around nervously. The boy who was eating right in front of him a minute ago was gone without him even noticing it.

“Shit.” He murmured.

Chapter Text

After lunch, Severus returned to his potion to apply the last final additions to it. The concoction needed to sit for several hours in a heated environment so Severus warmed up the room. He took off his outer robe, folded it and placed it next to his old Potions book. He made a mental note to talk about that with Potter as soon as possible, as he undid the many buttons on his coat and pulled that off as well. Feeling much cooler he reached for the top button on his dress shirt to make himself a bit more comfortable when he heard footsteps outside, then Potter’s voice.

“No, no, Teddy, you can't go in there today!”

But of course the little mischief disregarded the direct order immediately and Severus could see the doorknob turn slowly and the blue and khaki blur rushed in the room, followed by a sheepishly smiling Potter.

Snape, fully aware of the dangers a potion lab could mean for a hyperactive child such as this one, mouthed a silent “What the hell?” to Potter, before taking away all the sharp knives the quick hands were already rummaging for on the table. Potter meanwhile flicked his wand to both sides of the room, and Severus saw a protective orange barrier flush up right before the equipment and ingredients.

The boy, as soon as he realized that he couldn't pull out any cauldrons, nor could he even climb inside one, decided it was time to look around behind Severus, where the potion was still boiling. Potter’s charm made that unavailable too but the small child still tried to peak in it.

“Whass is there?” He asked looking up at Severus.

Severus conjured his most malignant smile, leaned close to the boy and whispered, “Deadly poison.”

The expected effect never happened; the little minx didn't falter, nor did he faint in fear.

He just giggled and ran off, turning into a wolf, his small paws almost inaudible on the wooden floor. Severus stared after him, his pride slightly offended, thinking he might be getting a bit rusty if his best efforts weren’t enough to work on even a two year old anymore. Potter was still in the room however so he couldn't let himself bath in pity over the loss of his evil powers.

The other man was intensely watching him and Severus suddenly felt self-aware. “What?” He asked defensively, as he finally opened the top button on his shirt and felt like he could breathe again.

The green eyes snapped back at his face, and Severus could see the younger man gulp in anxiety. “I think... I have never seen you without your robes before.”

Severus was taken aback for a second. He felt the heat rise even more but he suspected it wasn’t coming from the room, more like radiating from him. He wasn’t sure if he should apologize because Potter took his appearance as inappropriate, so he just arched an eyebrow. “Well it has been fairly hot in here, as the potion needs heat.” He explained.

Potter’s gaze drifted to the exposed skin at his neck but Severus forced himself not to be aware of that, as he started rolling up his sleeves, walking towards the door to close it, as the room was supposed to be held in a constant warm temperature.

Potter, who stood between him and the door, took a hesitant step backwards and Snape stopped a few feet away from him. “Am I... intimidating you, Potter?” Severus asked bewildered, as the other man’s actions suggested just that, however it seemed unlikely.

 “No...” Potter answered cautiously, then an anxious chuckle left his mouth. “It’s just... this is almost like seeing you naked.” The younger man admitted, scratching his neck.

Severus tried not to glare at him, so he focused back his attention on rolling up his other sleeve, as he answered, “I can assure you, Potter, I look entirely different naked.” He raised his gaze and buried it into the emerald eyes. “Less fabric, more skin, you see.”

He felt satisfied at the outraged expression on the brave Gryffindor’s face and he took the opportunity. “You will take back my Potions book to the evidence storeroom. I can write down any note in there you may require but I won't have you arrested for stealing something like that.”

Potter shook his head before he answered. “There is an exact copy in there; no one could notice the difference. Well, there is no difference.”

“You will take it back.” Snape insisted.

“No I won't. I need it. And they would find it suspicious that I was rummaging through old evidences. It’s safer if I just keep it.”

“And why did you even need it in the first place?”

“Just because.” Potter stated firmly and the first time Severus heard the authority in his voice. Yes, if Potter would come to arrest him one day and used that tone, Severus would certainly be forced to take him seriously. But the expression on the Auror changed quickly and as he spoke again, he returned to the friendly tone. “Are you done here?”

Severus nodded, “Yes. The potion needs to be left alone to boil for a couple of hours.”

“Good,” Potter smiled, “you can come and play with us then.” He reached out a hand towards the door as if Severus needed someone to show him the way.

The former professor rolled his eyes but stepped towards the entrance until suddenly Potter grabbed his left arm. Instincts kicked in and he tried to tear his hand out of the steady grip immediately, but then Potter’s gentle fingers unexpectedly caressed the Dark Mark and Severus stilled his struggle.

“The Mark... it’s fading.” Potter remarked in awe.

“Of course, you idiot, the Dark Lord is dead. Now, can I have my arm back?” Severus snapped more irrate than was necessary.

“Have you seen Lucius or Draco recently?” Potter asked, his thumb still sliding over the snake firmly as if he were trying to rub it off.

“No. And I insist you release my arm.” Severus urged the young man, who seemed completely unaware of the death glare he was receiving. Potter was too close and Severus could not take responsibility of his actions if the Auror stayed in this proximity.

“Your Mark is almost gone.” Potter exclaimed looking up at him and finally realizing how close Severus was to start shouting. He let go of the arm and uttered a soft, “Sorry.”

Snape drove his palm over the Mark a couple of times, as Potter’s touch seemed to burn him.

“Both Draco and Lucius still have the Mark, a bit faded yes, like a very old tattoo, more red than black, but not like this. Theirs haven’t changed since the war. Yours is almost gone. It’s like it’s disappearing.”

Severus watched the other man then looked at his arm. Potter was right, the Mark was disappearing slowly from his skin. The once black stain was only an orange sign now, as if it had been drawn by a sharpie not with Voldemort’s blood. All these years he assumed it was because the madman was gone, but if Lucius and Draco still had theirs... the reason must have been something else.

“I’m glad.” Potter sighed, and Severus snapped up his head to see the young man nodding slightly. “Yes. I’m very glad to see that.” He said softly and with that, the Auror turned towards the door. “Come on, Snape. I’m sure Teddy would love to show off to you with his Quidditch talent.”

 

o.O.o.

 

“Shoes!” The little boy commanded when Harry and Snape showed up in the doorway.

“It’s playtime. He’s the boss now.” Harry grinned at his former professor right away. As he was already barefoot, he was allowed inside The Playground. “If you want to come in, you have to take them off.”

“What if I do not wish to go in there?” Snape raised an eyebrow.

Harry smirked and pointed at his godson, who was already fumbling with Snape’s shoelaces. “I don't think that’s an option here.”

Snape kicked off his shoes and was instantly allowed to step in the small boy’s sanctuary. Teddy grabbed his hand and pulled the man to the other side of the room, where he started showing him all his toys. Harry mused at how easily his godson accepted the man, who as far as Harry remembered, scared everyone to death in his vicinity, except maybe his own House. It was even more surprising however to watch Snape around the kid. Harry had to admit, he never thought his former, strict professor would let anyone to drag him anywhere. He watched Snape holding Teddy’s hand in one hand and a huge giant plush snake in the other, looking utterly shocked and confused.

So human, Harry thought, and his morning uncertainty regarding how to cope with the man, who used to be his hated professor, the dark mystery in his childhood, someone he thought to be a traitor but later turned out to be the bravest and most loyal man he’d ever known returned and he became just as bemused as the man.

Teddy didn't know the concept of personal space yet, so he was all over the kneeling Snape, who seemed to accept the fact that he was Teddy’s latest toy now, being the new item in the well-known room. The boy handed him his Chocolate Frog Card collection proudly, on the top Harry knew instantly by Snape’s frowning face, was Albus Dumbledore. He was about to interfere, afraid of what memories that card might have brought back in the man, but then Teddy suddenly turned into a pup and went behind Snape, and tried to jump on his shoulder with his front paws. Snape was still too high for him, so the boy trotted back to the front on four legs and climbed on the Potion Master’s lap, put his right paw on the man’s shoulder, pressed his left one to his chest and sniffled into the man’s ear.

Harry took a hurried step towards them but when he heard Snape’s soft laugh, he stopped amazed. Teddy was human once more, rolling on the floor, laughing, then turned back into a wolf and pressed his head down on his front paws and his back up, while waving his tail excitedly, inviting Snape to play with him.

Snape tried to pat the boy on the head, or at least Harry suspected that was his aim, but the wolf snapped his small teeth towards the long fingers as if he wanted to bite. Harry knew Teddy was harmless, but maybe Snape didn't. The Potions Master pulled away his hand quickly, but laughed again, something Harry found quite attractive, given it made Snape many years younger. It was a feature, Harry realized, he wanted to see more often on the man.

“You minx, you want to bite me?” Snape growled threateningly, but still smiling. Harry moved closer to them and at that moment, still smiling widely, Snape looked up at him and Harry’s heart missed a beat. He was sure he had seen this content expression on the man some other time, but the when or where, remained a mystery. The more he searched his mind, the worse his headache got.

While Snape was watching him, Teddy managed to clasp his mouth around the former professor’s wrist, who immediately snapped back his attention. He turned and twisted his hand between the cub’s jaws but Teddy didn't let go. “He bites, just like his father.” Snape remarked with a hint of mirth in his smooth voice.

“Sirius bit you?” Harry asked amused.

“Yes, when we were younger. On my leg. I made Sectumsempra after that incident.” Snape confessed, and Harry could feel a bit of remorse in his voice.

“Daddy?” Teddy looked questioningly up at Snape. He was now back to his human form, half way across the man’s lap, small legs dangling in the air.

“Yes, your dear daddy. He was just as wild as you are. And he got punished for it.” Snape smirked at the kid, who giggled and rolled off him and run to the corner. He dragged out a small broom and hopped on it. The broom, which was a miniature version of Harry’s Firebolt, hovered about a foot in the air. The boy’s feet still reached the ground while he leaned slightly forward and drifted towards them, yelling, “Kwiddish, kwiddish!”

Harry laughed at the mortified expression on Snape’s face, most likely afraid that the boy would drag him on a broom like that too. Harry tapped him on the shoulder reassuringly, and took out his wand to summon a goal hoop for the boy from somewhere underneath all the toys. When the post stood proudly in the middle of the room and Teddy had his small red ball in his hand, the two adults effaced themselves to the side.

Off the five enthusiastically thrown balls, Teddy managed to send two towards the goal post, none of them went in, one towards Harry, who dodged it effectively, one lost its zest and dropped to the ground about two steps from the boy, while the fifth fell out of his small hand and landed behind him. Harry could see the gloom in the bright blue eyes but then Snape spoke from next to him.

“Why don't you show me your best shot, hm boy?” The man asked, sitting on the carpet casually, legs folded beneath him.

Teddy nodded and took up the ball for the last time but his moves lacked his usual childish enthusiasm. Harry just had to take a small look at Snape and he knew the man was up to something but he didn't realize what until he saw the man pull out his black wand and point it to the ball the boy had meanwhile thrown away. Snape, not noticing the green eyes on him, shot the ball with a spell and it went right through the hoop. Teddy of course, didn't notice the magic, and bounced off his broom, before he started running round and round in the room.

“Did you see it, did you see it Seeus?” He shouted between adorable chuckles.

“I did see it.” Harry remarked quietly with a mischievous grin, looking at his former professor, who seemed to blush slightly, before he raised his hooked nose with pride. “That’s cheating.” Harry added slyly.

There was a momentary pause before Snape looked evilly at Harry and answered. “I was the Head of Slytherin, Potter. What did you expect?” He smirked then his eyes returned to Teddy, who was still running around the room madly. “And what’s his problem? Is he on fire?”

“FIIIIRE!” Teddy shouted catching just that one word. “The floor is fiiire!” He yelled and turned into wolf form and started running towards a box and jumped on it.

“Oh shit, I hate this game.” Harry stood up quickly and sprinted towards the door, leaving a stunned Snape behind.

“What game?” Snape asked.

“The lava game.” Harry explained from the door, in safety. “You have to get to me, by stepping only on the furniture, or on the stuff on the floor.”

“That is a stupid game.” Snape remarked.

“I know,” Harry sighed in agreement. “But he’s a two year old, and he loves jumping around.”

“You’re in lava!” Teddy yelled sitting on the box as a human again, pointing at Snape, who started back at the boy.

“Step on something, a plush, whatever.” Harry suggested to the idly standing man, before Teddy started a tantrum.

“You’re in lava!!” Teddy insisted headstrong and Harry knew what was coming, but Snape finally moved and stepped on a book that had kittens on it. Teddy nodded firmly then turned back into a wolf and leaped from the box, jumping onto a small cabinet.

“If he gets to you, does the game end?” Snape asked eyeing the distance between Harry and the boy.

“Hopefully.” Harry answered. “It’s your move. There’s a basket on your left.” He advised, pointing it out.

“Don't heeeelp him!” His godson cried loudly and Harry raised his hands in surrender.

“Sorry, you’re on your own.” Harry laughed towards Snape.

“I will manage.” Snape grinned back slyly. He stepped on the plush snake with one leg and on the scattered Chocolate Frog Cards with the other. “Listen Teddy,” He started but the little minx leaped and wasn’t listening to him. He landed in a box full of bricks.

“Damn it...” Snape murmured under his breath and Harry realized Teddy wasn’t the only one enjoying the game. The younger man couldn't keep the smile off his face while watching his former teacher stand in front of such hardships.

The older man eyed the little basket, but before he stepped in it, he tried again. “Teddy? Listen to me boy.” Teddy finally snapped his yellow wolf eyes at him and, pricking his ears, indicated he was listening. “Would you like to fly?” Snape asked from the little boy.

“Fly?” Harry’s godson asked back in a slightly doubtful but still hopeful tone.

“Yes.” Snape confirmed with a devious expression, which belied his current actions as he carefully jumped into a basket. Harry was sure if he ever talked about this to Hermione or Ron, they would never believe him. Moreover Snape would probably kill him for that, but hey. It was worth the risk.

“Why don't you jump to that cupboard over there? If you start running, at the end of it you could jump big enough to reach your Uncle. Wouldn’t that be good?” Snape asked, his tactic still hidden from Harry, who was sure, the boy could never jump that big.

“You can't help me.” Teddy said unconvinced.

Snape seemed thoughtful for a second. “But I have advantage over you. This is not fair play.”

“Advantage?” Teddy asked back.

“Yes. My legs are longer than yours are. Yards longer. I can jump further than you.” Harry snorted at that, eyeing Snape’s long legs with his groin stirring, but the man shushed him.

Teddy meanwhile seemed to comprehend the offer. The next moment he turned back into wolf form and jumped on the cupboard Snape had pointed out. The older man hopped to a chequered blanket and pulled out his wand. Teddy started running towards Harry, who had already walked closer, ready to leap forward and catch the boy if something went wrong. But at the moment Teddy skipped from the edge of the small cupboard, Snape hit him with a well aimed, silent Levitating Spell and made him soar through the whole room. The boy turned back into human form in midair, laughing wildly and waving with his hands merrily, while shouting, “Teddy’s flying!! Teddy’s flying! Uncle Hally, I’m flying!”

Harry stretched his arms widely waiting for the boy with confidence that Snape would direct him right to Harry’s chest. Laughing now too, Harry seized the boy under his arm as he arrived and turned round and round with him until they got both dizzy. He put down Teddy who staggered a bit then fell down on his bum, but was still giggling.

“Seeus walks on lava.” The little pixie pointed out and Harry looked to see Snape coming closer to them, now on the carpet.

“Don't be daft, boy, no one can walk on lava.” Snape announced. “However I am a wizard. I can turn lava into rock.”

“You can?”

“Yes, I can.”

“Wow.” Teddy breathed astonished.

“Slytherin.” Harry mumbled under his breath.

“If that is meant as an insult, Mister Potter, I’m afraid it is a rather bad one.” Snape sneered, his chin high. “I am proud to be a Slytherin to the last drop of my blood.”

 “And dear Seeus, you’re wrong yet again. That was actually a compliment.” Harry nodded grinning then turned to his godson. “Teddy, how about some dinner? We could have a picnic in here, what do you think?”

 

o.O.o.

 

The freshly baked bread smelled amazing as Harry sliced it and put the pieces into the small bowl, which landed in the basket next to the thinly cut ham and different types of cheese, and the carved vegetables. The box of orange juice and the bottle of cold Chardonnay were already in the hamper with plastic plates and normal glasses as Harry couldn't find any plastic ones. He added grapes and strawberries as desserts on top and the picnic basket was ready.

“Teddy’s going to love this.” He murmured but the smile froze off his face the instant he heard Snape’s wild roar.

“Potter! Come here this instant!” The tone was more angry than worried so Teddy wasn't in actual danger, he had probably just angered the man somehow, Harry concluded. Or maybe Snape just found another relic, the younger man saved, like that one letter he received from his former professor during the trials.

Harry grabbed the basket and hurried up to The Playground. As he stepped in the room, his stomach made a somersault because of the picture that welcomed him. Teddy, yet again as a wolf pup, was playing with his squeaking chew toy in the corner, munching on it with his not so sharp baby teeth.

Snape was however in the middle of the room, on his knees, his hands tied behind his back, struggling against the restrain, with a defiant expression on his face. Swallowing hard at the inappropriate thoughts forming in his head, Harry cleared his throat.

“Did you try to take away the chew toy?” He pressed out, putting down the basket.

“Yes.” Came the irritated answer and Harry stepped slowly closer. How the bloody fuck was Snape this indescribably erotic in this position, Harry didn't know, but the fact remained. His groin was burning with need as he walked in front of the man on his knees and looked down at him. Snape’s black eyes were on Harry, the rebellious gaze turning the Gryffindor on more than anything in the past years. He suddenly noticed everything about his former professor: how the button on his shirt was still open, letting Harry peak at the few dark hairs on the man’s chest, how the white fabric tensed on Snape’s body, threatening to rip apart, beautiful eyes sparkling darkly and endless like a tunnel. “The sound of it drives me mad.” Harry more like read the sentence from the thin lips, than heard it being said aloud, however the deep, smooth voice didn't leave his body unaffected either.

“Yeah... you can't do that.” He smiled at the man, but it was meant to himself, as the only thing he was able to think was how good it would feel to push his cock between those kissable lips.

“Yes, Potter, I noticed.” Snape groaned, tensing against the plush snake Teddy had used in his accidental magic to tie him. The man jerked his head back to try to get his black hair out of his face and Harry saw his own hand rush to help. With a swift motion that came from nowhere, he drew five fingers into Snape’s hair and swept the dark strands behind. He tried not to notice how smoothly his hand moved in the blackness.

Yeah, not at all weird. “Let me help with that.” He mumbled, pulling out his wand fast and casting a nonverbal Finite Incantatem at the man who stared at him wide eyed. The snake fell off but Snape remained kneeling and staring back at Harry, hands slowly falling to his sides. Yeah, not weird. At all.

Friends, Harry reminded himself, and even that just barely, as their friendship was still so fresh. Harry shouldn’t have these feelings, but he couldn't help it.

“Let’s eat.” He suggested turning around.

 

o.O.o

 

Sipping from his Chardonnay, Severus leaned back on his hand and tugged one of his legs up. He tried his best to concentrate on anything other than Potter, but that was nearly impossible. The man was all around him; his laughter in his ears, not mocking anymore, but still raising goose bumps on his skin, his scent, fresh like rain, his bright green eyes, almost gleaming. Severus knew he was in big trouble, and that was why he had a glass of wine in his hand. He wouldn’t have minded something stronger though.

What had happened after Teddy’s accidental magic opened Severus’ eyes. He still wasn’t sure what he felt but something was stirring inside him, and if it were to surface, that wouldn’t end well. Potter, of all people, managed to make him as confused as a little boy could be, and now even his magic seemed to constantly prickle under his skin, ever since the young man had touched Severus. Not to mention the returning headaches.

“Close your eyes.” Potter grinned playfully and Teddy obeyed. “You too.” He looked at Snape who only raised an eyebrow as a response.

“That would be unwise.” Severus remarked.

“No, it wouldn’t.” The Gryffindor scoffed. “I'm not going to hurt you. But it only works if you close your eyes.” Teddy peaked through his long eyelashes, his lips pursed.

“Seeus, close your eyes.” The boy ordered too.

“C’mon, just do it.” Potter murmured, putting a gentle hand on Severus’ shoulder and the touch caused the older man’s eyes to flutter closed.

The next moment, Severus felt Potter’s magic unleashed, brushing wildly against him in waves, even though he was sure that was not what Potter wanted. Yet he bathed in the warm sensation while it lasted, before he could smell an earthy scent around him.

“Open them.” The younger man sighed close to him, sending a shot of arousal through the Potion Master’s system.

He looked around, almost as stunned as the little boy was. Potter seemed to flush, from either the amount of magic he just released and used, or maybe he did feel as well how his untamed magic wrapped itself around Severus like a warm blanket a moment ago.

There was a forest around them, Severus noted with something close to awe. The tartan blanket was still under them. The plates and all the finger food Potter had prepared was still scattered on the fabric, half eaten. The fruit still there, untouched, the glasses full with either wine or orange juice, except Severus’ who had downed his in one go, upon realizing what the young Auror had just done.

Before he could say anything to the wizard who turned The Playground into an actual jungle, he watched as Teddy turned into a wolf pup once again and run to his godfather, wiggling his tail, his small triangle shaped ears flat against his head, challenging Potter to play with him. The Gryffindor looked at Snape for a moment, shy grin curving his lips upside before suddenly morphing into an adult wolf.

While Teddy’s eyes were the normal yellow coloured, Potter’s green eyes stuck with him even in his Animagus form. The fur around his eyes was black, as if wearing a mask, however his cheeks, and neck white, or light brown, depending on the light. His back, once again dark, more black strands than brown, while his legs, slim and white like snow. His tail was fluffy and auburn, with only the tip of it turning black and the soft long fur on his stomach light brown once again.

Severus couldn't help but stare at the magnificent animal, who seemed to have forgotten about him and laid on his stomach and rested his bushy head on his front paws. The little pup crept closer to him in the same position, while Potter nudged him with his black nose. Teddy bared his baby fangs and bit playfully towards Potter who leaned away easily from the kid. Suddenly, Teddy jumped at the Auror who pretended defeat as the small cub bit into the thick fur on his neck.

Severus watched them play, amused at the beauty of it, and feeling somehow exceptional that he was allowed to see this even though he was not part of the family, or in this case, the pack. He sensed the similar warmness spread in his body and with that, the painful headache returned as well, while he observed Potter roll around in the fallen leaf that covered the ground, or growl teasingly at the boy who was chewing on his tail. He couldn't deny he thought it was adorable, even though he would have never used such adjectives to describe anything Potter was related to. He couldn't decide if it was the small boy or Potter himself who induced these sentimental feelings in him but as he watched the wolves run around in the room, bouncing from moss covered rocks, lurking behind thick trees while trying to hunt the other down, he realized he didn’t even care.

All of a sudden, the enormous wolf looked at him, his green eyes bore into Snape’s gaze, and there was something beastly in that look, something wild that Severus could not identify. Potter had a family, yet at that moment the loneliness radiated from him as he bowed his head slightly and took a tentative step towards Severus.

Potter turned back to human form again, but was still on all fours, green eyes gleaming in the darkness of the forest around them. Snape’s headache was burning like fire in his mind, as he realized something. The fact he desired the other man was an understatement, most likely the biggest one in the past five years. It was affection that was building inside him, growing stronger with every minute he had spent with the younger man. This was why he hid for so long in the cottage by the sea, all by himself. Yes, at first it was remorse and guilt over what he had done, but not since Minerva first mentioned that Potter was looking for him. He hid far away from the young man, knowing somewhere deep that what he managed to repress unconsciously during the years they had spent in Hogwarts was finally rushing to the surface, threatening to erupt like a volcano.

When he was a child, he mistook the feeling of friendship with affection. Ironically enough, with that woman’s son, now it was the complete opposite. Ever since the verdict, he assumed that the weird sensation in the pit of his stomach was the surfacing friendship they might achieve one day, mixed with the unfathomable desires of his treacherous, unsatisfied body. When in truth, it was his disloyal heart awaking now, when the young man was not a taboo anymore.

Teddy crushed into Potter, who lost himself so deeply in Severus’ eyes that he didn't notice the wolf-boy charging at him. The act tore Severus from the analysis of his emotions and shoved him back to reality. The Gryffindor laughed, as they, once again, rolled around the floor until they came to a halt against Severus’ leg.

Potter lay on the ground, panting lightly, eyes closed but still smiling while the small boy was resting on his chest, his giggles like warm sunshine to Severus’ cold heart.

Severus wanted this to himself, he admitted reluctantly but glad he was brave enough not to lie to himself anymore. All through those years he wanted to believe he was happy with his life, but this made him realise there was still something missing. Something he wanted Potter to give him. Something, he bitterly noted, Potter would never willingly offer.

The green eyes opened up and glinted mischievously at Severus as the trees turned back into bookcases, rocks morphed into boxes and the leaf cover ground became a soft carpet again. The magic was gone, so was the moment. Severus snapped his gaze away, afraid that his black eyes would betray him the same way as his heart did.

The young man’s gently caressing fingers on his upper arm caused a surge of panic to rush through him. He looked at Potter again but the green eyes mirrored confusion not realization and disgust.

“What’s wrong?” The Auror asked softly.

Severus wanted to get lost in that touch, he wanted more but he knew he couldn't have it. Friendship, he reminded himself before he answered, “Nothing. I am merely surprised.” He tried to steer the conversation away from him.

“Oh. I see.” Potter nodded, removing his hand. “I learned Animagic when we realized Teddy was coming. He doesn’t know about Remus yet, he can sense that something happens, but he just doesn’t understand it. We didn't want him to be afraid if he ever accidently sees Remus, so I learned to become a wolf myself. He could never hurt Teddy, we’re hundred percent sure of that, but we just...”

“Don't want your godson to be scared of his own father. I can understand that.” Severus nodded, watching the boy who wasn’t paying any attention to their conversation.

“It would break Remus.” Harry admitted, covering his eyes with an arm. “He would never survive that. Lycanthropy still has a stigma to it, that’s why Hermione tries so hard to work out a beneficial system for half-breads. But even if society accepts him, Remus would die if Teddy doesn’t. I don't know what I will do if that ever happens.”

Severus clasped his long fingers around Potter’s wrist and pulled the hand away from the young man’s eyes so that he could look into them. “It could never happen, Potter.” He said reassuring. “Look at him, he’s a wolf himself. He grew up with a gigantic hound and an adult wolf keeping him constant company. Even if he had never seen Lupin’s other form before, I’m sure he would accept him right away.”

“I hope you’re right,” Potter sighed, his thumb brushing Severus’ skin lightly.

“Really, Potter?” Snape raised an eyebrow and smiled softly as he let go of the warm hand. “Do you know me as someone who is often wrong?”

“I don't.” The younger man admitted with a relieved laughter then sat up. He looked down at the boy, who was now sitting on his lap, staring at him with wide eyes. “Would you like some strawberries, Teddy?” He asked and his godson nodded vehemently, so Severus reached behind him and took the bowl.

“Thanks.” Potter murmured and Severus was sure he didn't mean the fruit.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry packed away the remnants of their dinner, musing on the thought that if Teddy weren’t in the room with them, this could have almost counted as a dinner date with Snape. This theory almost made him grin but he realized he probably shouldn’t read too much in this.

As he walked out from the kitchen, he was wondering how he could keep Snape here for just a little longer. The man previously mentioned that soon he had to check the potion, as it was supposed to be ready any time now, and after that, he would probably go home and, who knew when they could meet ever again.

Teddy was supposed to be in bed soon, so Harry went to the bathroom and opened the tap to fill the large bathtub with warm water and infinite amount of bubbles, the boy loved so much.

“And it’s time for your evening bath, young man!” He announced, couple of minutes later, standing in The Playground’s door.

“Noooooo!” Teddy jumped up from behind Snape, who was sitting on the carpet, legs folded beneath him. The kid dropped something on the ground, and run in front of Harry, his arms stretched to both sides, as if he wanted to block Harry from seeing anything that happened in the room.

“What’s going on here?” Harry inquired suspiciously, looking first at his godson, then at his former professor.

Teddy, upon realizing that his previous method wasn’t working run back to Snape, yelling loudly. “No, no, no, no, no!” He relentlessly tried to hide the man behind him, small hands still outstretched. “Don't look!”

“Why can't I look at Seeus, Teddy?” Harry asked carefully, stepping inside the room. The blank expression on the older man’s face did not reveal anything, however Harry suspected something was off, because Snape was reluctant even to look at him.

“Because he’s not ready.” Teddy cried.

“Not ready for what exactly?” Harry raised an eyebrow as he observed his godson take up that something from the ground he had dropped a minute ago, then step behind the silent man again.

“For his princess.” The boy announced and Harry realized what was in his hand. A small hairbrush, which Harry usually used to brush the small boy’s soft hair. The hairbrush, which this time was sliding in the long raven curls.

Harry snorted loudly, and he was literally shaking as he tried to repress the laughter that wanted to erupt from his throat, as he knew precisely what would his former professor’s remark be if he started to snigger.

“If you utter even a syllable about this to any soul, living or dead, I swear to Merlin, I will hunt you down and I will kill you, before you could even say as much as mercy.” Snape murmured with a mortified expression.

“Oh, do not worry, My Prince, they would never believe me.” Harry chuckled, walking closer to them. “And when do we expect your princess, My Lord?” Harry teased with a huge grin, sitting down as well.

“You should ask him.” Snape noted. “I tried to convince your dear godson that it is nearly impossible for me to have one, yet he insists that I do.”

“Everyone has a princess.” Teddy said with conviction.

“And what about your daddies? Are they still waiting for their princesses?” Snape asked trying to get away from the brush.

“Nooo.” The boy answered, with a tone that suggested he was sure Snape was an imbecile. “Paffoo Daddy says he loves only princes. But not any prince, just the Prince of the Moon.” He explained and Harry saw the raised eyebrow he got as a reward.

“And whom does the Prince of the Moon love, Teddy?” Harry inquired, knowing the answer precisely. He couldn't stop grinning as he watched the little minx brush the long, black hair, not to mention, the almost content expression on Snape’s face as he let him do it.

“Doggies.” The boy chuckled. “Seeus, do you like princes too?” He asked suddenly and Harry snorted again. He loved this in small children, they weren’t afraid of anyone. For Harry it took more than ten years to ask that from Snape, while the boy needed less than ten hours.

“Yes.” The older man answered with a deep sigh. “Princesses whine too much.”

“And do you have a prince too?” The kid asked, dropping the brush and walking in front of the man. There was a short pause, before Snape would answer, and Harry was surprised to feel rather anxious in those thirty seconds or so.

“No, I don't have a prince.” Snape confessed then looked at Teddy. “What about you, boy? Do you have a Moon Prince or a Sun Princess?”

“Ew! No!” Teddy cried up, covering his eyes, seemingly disgusted by even the idea of love. “But Uncle Hally has a prince.” He whispered secretively at Snape, whose black eyes snapped at Harry instantly.

“Does he now?” Snape inquired in a soft but curious tone.

“Aham.” The boy nodded. “He says his Prince is dark... and Half-Bloo-“

Harry’s Seeker instincts came back within a second, snatching the boy around his stomach with his left hand while his right covered up his big mouth before the kid could finish that sentence. He would have to be more careful around the boy, as it seemed he understood more than what he let on.

“Oookay, fun’s over. Let’s give you a bath, while Seeus checks on that potion he’s working on, shall we?” Harry declared, jumping to his feet, with Teddy in his arm, hand still firmly on the boy’s lips.

Without a glance at Snape, he trotted into the bathroom, pretty sure that the black eyes followed him into the room.

“We don't talk about Uncle Harry’s prince to Seeus, okay, Teddy?” He put down the kid and started undressing him.

“Why?” Came the muffled question from somewhere deep inside the blue jumper.

“Because Seeus isn’t interested in this.”

“But he is.” The boy stated. “He asked.”

“Yes but... He doesn’t have to know.”

“Why?”

“Because... He shouldn’t know.”

“Why?”

“Why do you have to keep asking questions?” Harry sighed heavily, putting the boy into the warm water.

The minutes ticked by as Harry watched his godson in the bathtub, battling his toy ships that launched bubble cannonballs. The boy seemed tiny in the sea of foam, his curly hair stuck to his small head. His hands and feet wrinkled more and more as he played in the water with Harry sitting next to the tub, leaning on the edge.

“Where’s Seeus?” Teddy asked suddenly as he tried to catch a huge bubble, Harry had blown from the tip of his wand.

“I don't know.” Harry answered though he suspected that he was probably with the potion. “Do you think he’s waiting for his prince right now?”

“No...” Teddy mumbled, poking the bubble with his finger. “He has his prince.”

“Oh really? And who is Seeus’ prince?” Harry smiled at the small kid but he didn't answer and Harry didn't force the subject any longer. “Do you want me to call him here?”

“Aham.” The boy nodded as the bubble burst.

“Should we send Prongs?” Harry winked at him while smiling.

“Yes!” Teddy cried enthusiastically so Harry summoned his Patronus.

“Your Majesty, your presence is required in the bathing chamber.” Harry announced in a mocking tone, sending his stag to Snape. Teddy giggled again and disappeared under the water. Before he could come up though, Snape walked in.

“If you do that again...” The older man threatened but Harry only laughed. His reward was a slap on the head.

Teddy emerged onto the surface, spitting water. “Seeus! Seeus!” The boy cried up, seeing who joined them.

“You wished to see me?” Snape asked the boy and sat down on a folded towel next to Harry.

“Let’s play!” Teddy shouted giggling, splashing water everywhere.

“Haven’t you played enough?” Snape sighed, but looked at Harry waiting for ideas on the games.

“We could just play something easy like Word Chain.” Harry suggested.

“No!” Came the defiant answer from the bubble mountain.

“How about Pass The Message.” Harry asked, as that was what Remus and Sirius usually played with the boy while bathing.

“Yes! Yes! Yes!” Teddy shouted and Snape looked at him incredulously.

“Isn’t that game supposed to be played with a lot of people?”

“Well, he likes it.” Harry shrugged. “And as long as he enjoys it, it’s a good game.”

“If you insist.” Snape sighed. “I guess, you will be the one starting the game.” He looked at the boy, who nodded grinning and leaned closer to Snape. Harry saw what was about to happen, but was too slow to stop it. As the other man inclined his head towards Teddy so that he can whisper something into his ear, the boy suddenly morphed into a wolf and licked his face.

“F-“ Snape hissed, jerking away from the laughing boy, wiping his wet cheek onto his white shirt. “Potter, your godson just licked me.” He growled at Harry as if it was his fault.

“That’s good.” Harry couldn't help but laugh at the offended expression. “That means he likes you.”

“No, Potter, that means I like him even less.” Snape murmured but when he looked back at Teddy, he was smiling again. “You pixie.”

“Let’s play!” The pixie just laughed at the strict man and leaned closer again.

“But no licking, Thaddeus!” Snape warned the boy before he, once again tilted his head to him. This time there wasn’t any licking but given Snape’s astounded expression and the fact that he paled instantly, Harry couldn't help but wonder what kind of swear word did the boy learn this time and whisper into Snape’s ear.

“Pass it on!” Teddy ordered with a smile.

Snape shook his head but didn't look at Harry. “No... I... can't. I didn't hear you.” He mumbled, clearly lying.

“I can say it again.” The boy offered leaning forward already but Snape pulled away.

“No... It’s alright.”

Harry looked at the man with a curious gaze. Snape took a deep breath and Harry started to suspect that this wasn’t about a swear word. They leaned towards each other and as their bodies came closer, Harry could see the black eyes close slowly and was surprised to feel his own eyelids flicker down as well. The next moment he felt hot breath and soft lips against the shell of his ear, and he had to grab into the bathtub not to moan lightly.

Then the deep, salacious voice whispered, “I love you.

The world around Harry seemed to have stopped. His heart missed a beat then went on faster, pounding like thousands of drums.

“What?” He moaned, before the fact that this was just a game could register in him.

“I love you.” Snape repeated still softly and barely audible but the previous shaking seemed to have disappeared from his voice as this time the sentence sounded more firm, like a confident statement.

Harry realized two things simultaneously. The first was that this was just a game. The second was that he longed for this sentence to be true.

His eyes shot wide open from the pain that once again slashed into his mind, as if someone just attempted to cut his brain out with a spoon. He snapped his gaze at Snape who was still very close, and very pale, and just very tempting at that moment. The other man winced too, was it from a headache, or because of what he just had to say to Harry remained a mystery because Harry forced himself to look away before he would ruin everything.

He just looked at his godson with a kind smile and said, “I love you, too.”

The boy chuckled again but then stopped suddenly and stared at something over Snape’s shoulder. Harry looked there too, but didn't see anything.

“What’s going on now?” The other man inquired, slightly tensed.

Harry just shrugged and watched Teddy as he reached out his tiny hand as if trying to catch something, only he could see. After a few seconds of hand waving, he sat back into the water and stared at both of them with only his occasional giggling interrupting the stunned silence in the bathroom.

“You’re pretty.” Teddy told Snape suddenly, looking thoughtful for a moment and Harry couldn't help but laugh at that. “You’re pretty too.” The boy repeated, this time looking at Harry. The smile faded from the younger man’s lips as he watched the kid, contemplating where the hell this had come from.

Harry risked a side-glance at Snape, wondering if he knew what Teddy meant by this but the other man was just as dumbfounded as Harry was. They shared a confused look, before their eyes returned on the small boy.

“You’re shiny.” Teddy chuckled again, his blue eyes jumping from Snape to Harry then back again, before he took his rubber duck in hand and started mumbling to it. 

 

o.O.o                    

 

Teddy giggled loudly when Harry’s plush lion took a nasty bite from Snape’s snake.

“He seems almost cheerful that you are about to lose.” Snape remarked with a smirk.

“I’m far from losing.” Harry answered with a grin, his charmed lion throwing the plush reptile against its puppeteer. Snape nudged the woozy snake with his wand, what hissed wildly and returned to its former pride. Teddy cheered loudly again.

The two had been battling the enchanted plush animals for a while. It all started as a goodnight tale for the little boy who was tucked nicely in his bed, however soon it turned into a viscous fight between the two men. Now all three of them were on the ground, Teddy in Snape’s lap hugging his huge pillow, while Harry about two feet from them, lying on his stomach.

The snake launched towards the crouching lion, who swept its paw just before the smaller animal.

“Run!” Teddy cried and Harry noticed the incredulous gaze Snape gave the boy.

“Have your unintelligent fathers taught you nothing?” Snape drawled with an evil smile. “Snakes do not run.” He looked up, his eyes meeting the green stare that was observing him. “They slither.”

When Harry snapped his gaze back at his lion, it was too late, the plush animal’s front legs have been tied firmly that it couldn't even move. The snake glided around the lion and held it immobile, no matter how hard Harry tried to coax it to fight against the restrain. The python hissed at Harry, then swayed for a second.

“Game over, Potter.” Snape grinned over the enthusiastically bouncing boy. Harry dropped his wand, admitting defeat and started laughing too. This was the most amazing night he had in ages. He watched with fascination and a wicked smile on his lips as his former professor directed the plush snake towards his godson, who reached out giggling.

The animal slithered around the boy’s small wrist then up on his arm, clearly tickling him as Teddy’s giggles soon turned into laughter. It slid under his nightshirt and the boy rolled onto the floor, chuckling wildly. Harry risked a glance at Snape, but once again, found himself staring at the man, who used to be the absolute evil during his school days, while now he was no more than a simple man, whose company Harry craved more and more ever since the man had appeared on his doorstep that morning. It seemed Snape fulfilled his promise about trying to accept Harry for himself. The hatred that ruled their relationship during their school years vanished, it seemed the moment Voldemort did. Harry wanted to believe that Snape didn't even hate him during those years, just pretended, so that his behaviour would fit the spy’s position. But that was just a meagre, faint hope.

Harry understood that it was one thing that Snape thought about him as friend and as an equal. However, it was still hard to act that way for both of them. Harry too felt that sometimes it was hard not to see the Potions Professor in the man anymore, even though the smiles that showed up now and then on the attractive face were a helpful factor. Harry made a mental note to thank Teddy later on, maybe even reward him with an extra cookie.

“Snakey...” Teddy murmured affectionately at the animal that sneaked out from the hem of his shirt and pressed its soft face to the boy. He patted it and the snake hissed lovingly, its divided plush tongue flicked over the soft cheeks.

“Does Black know he prefers snakes to lions?” Snape asked smugly.

“No.” Harry sighed. “He prefers the Slytherin colours too, you know.” Harry added with a lopsided grin.

“Interesting.” Snape raised an eyebrow. “I am quite convinced that Black would consider disinheriting the child, were he to be a Slytherin, however you don't seem to be against the idea.”

“Why would I?” Harry grinned up the man. “And Sirius would never disinherit Teddy.” He shook his head amused.

“You are free to correct me if I am wrong, however I must note that does not happen usually, but when you were eleven, did you not ask the Hat to place you to Gryffindor instead of Slytherin?”

“Of course Dumbledore told you about that, didn't he?” Harry groaned.

“If that is any consolidation, I did not believe him until five years ago, when I experienced your slyness first handed during my trials.”

Harry laughed at that. “Oh yes, that was fun. I mean except the part that if we screw up, you end up in Azkaban, which we didn't want but... you know.”

“Mister Potter,” Snape drawled in a deep, smooth voice, “did you just confess you actually enjoy your inner snake?”

Harry smirked slyly as he looked at the man. “I’m afraid, Professor Snape, I am guilty of all charges.”

“Guilty you are only, Mister Potter, if you count cunning, slyness and ambition as sins. As for me, these are rather merits hence I deem you innocent.” Snape remarked leaning back on one hand. “Unless, of course, you are lying, in which case, you deserve punishment. Are you lying to me, Mister Potter?”

Harry wondered if by punishment Snape thought about the same thing as he did, however he was sure that was not the case. “Me? Lying?” He asked with pretended outrage. “I would never!”

“As your former professor, all I can say, I never had a student as infuriating as yourself. As a Slytherin, I still wonder how you nicked my ingredients.” Snape remarked

“As I’m part Slytherin, I’m inclined to bring that secret to the grave with me, just to torment you for a little while. As a Gryffindor however, I feel like I should be honest and satisfy your... curiosity.” Harry grinned as he sat up. He was surprised to see Snape’s black eyes darken suddenly.

“I believe,” the other man noted, “we have been through a lot of tormenting in the past. I suggest it’s high time for satisfying.” Harry gulped at the words but then Snape added. “Curiosity, I mean.”

Harry was sure the moment he was alone, satisfying would be the very thing he would do. And that time it wouldn’t be about his curiosity.

“I never nicked anything from you.” He admitted. “In second year, that was Hermione. In fourth, it was Dobby and well... Fake Moody.”

“Is that true?” Snape looked honestly surprised. “All these years, and it turns out you have been an exemplar student.” The sentence dripped with sarcasm and Harry laughed again.

“Oh no, I was quite the imprudent, brash and reckless kid as you always thought. I was just Slytherin enough that you almost never caught me. Not to mention, I had dad’s Invisibility Cloak and the Marauder’s Map.”

“Explain.” Snape leaned forward and Harry noticed that he had been letting Teddy munch on his hand for a while now. Even though the wolf boy’s teeth were still baby teeth, they did leave red marks behind.

“Do you want me to take him?” Harry asked quickly, reaching for his godson.

“Never mind the boy, he’s fine. What’s that map you mentioned?”

“The Marauders, dad, Sirius, Remus and Peter made a map of the school, that showed where every person in the castle was, all of the secret tunnels, everything. You know which one, you caught me with it in third year. But Remus took it from you, remember?”

“Oh bloody hell, of course I remember. I knew it was something important.”

“Sorry?” Harry offered with a shy grin but Snape only rolled his eyes and looked down on Teddy.

“Oh what I would do to see Lupin’s and Black’s faces, if he’s sorted into Slytherin.” Snape moaned a moment later and that sound sent a wild tremor down Harry’s body.

If he’s sorted into Slytherin and if I see their expressions, I might be willing to be persuaded to share that cherished memory.” Harry said placating smile on his lips.

“I am not sure I could pay the price.” The other man sighed. “For a memory like that you could enslave me for the rest of my life.”

Harry tried really hard not to envision that picture, but it was already too late. His cock gave an interested twitch by the inner sight of an enslaved Severus Snape.

“I’m sure we could work out something beneficial for both of us.” He remarked, standing up. It was time to get Teddy in bed, and Snape as far from him as possible before Harry ruined this friendship before it even started properly.

“It pains me to confess this, but whatever you would ask for, I would most likely present it to you with immense pleasure, as long as I can have that memory.” Snape admitted, his eyes closed and a smug smirk on his face, as if he was trying to imagine Remus and Sirius’ faces already. Harry stepped closer, shoving his hands into his pockets before he could reach out towards his professor again. “I am however quite surprised about your newfound appreciation for Slytherin. If you don't mind, what changed your opinion?” Snape queried gently.

“You.” Harry confessed honestly and the black eyes opened instantly, an intent, dark gaze bore into his.

The next moment, several things happened simultaneously, all of which led to a disaster. Harry was about to reach out and just touch Snape again when Teddy, back to his human form and half way out of Snape’s lap, giggled. Then there was a loud cracking sound coming from the plush Teddy was poking with Harry’s wand. The miniature however now very much alive lion bit the boy’s hand, before slashing him with his sharp claws and running off behind the bookcase, scared of Teddy’s painful cry. As the formerly plush, now more like living lion disappeared, it seemed to have pushed the rather instable cupboard away from the wall. Harry noticed that the furniture started falling towards them, right at Snape and Teddy and the terror must have been written on his face. Snape launched forward and braced himself over the still crying boy, pulling him firmly to his chest. Harry reached towards the heavy bookcase and managed to grasp it but he was too late, the books fell out from the shelves right over Snape’s back.

The second he heard Snape’s painful groan, Harry’s head seemed to have cast off the panicked state and he pushed back the bookcase with a surge of wandless magic. He waved his hand and all the books flew back to their places but the damage was done.

His former professor was wincing in pain.

“Are you alright?” Harry cried dropping next to them on the floor. Teddy’s terrified sobbing did nothing to alleviate his anxiety. Snape lowered the child from his chest, and Harry was horrified to notice the blood on Teddy’s arm. But before he could even reach for his wand, Snape had his in hand and he started murmuring a melodic healing charm, circling his black wand around Teddy’s wounded arm. The rhythmic sound and the deep murmurs coming from the Potions Master’s throat calmed the boy enough that the kid could notice that his wound was healed and the previous pain was nowhere.

When he was done, Snape smiled softly at the boy and dropped his wand as he sat back on his knees, flinching painfully with every move. Harry placed a reassuring and gentle hand on the man’s thigh before he turned to his godson.

“Teddy, are you okay? Does it hurt anywhere?” Harry asked, his fingertips meanwhile calmingly brushing Snape’s leg in order to let the man know, he would be with him just in a second.

Teddy held out his arm, which did not even have a scratch on it anymore. His eyes shined with tears and Harry took the boy’s hand in his right away. He kissed the place where the wound was, and the boy let out a relived sigh. “It’s better now, isn’t it?” Harry smiled. The boy nodded then looked anxiously at Snape.

“Are you okay?” Harry turned towards the other man too, who took a deep breath, but winced again.

“I’ve had worse.” Snape answered reluctantly.

“I’m sure of that.” Harry shook his head. “Take off your shirt, I’ll get some salve on the bruises.” Harry instructed the man and made sure that his voice was firm enough so that Snape didn’t even have the slightest idea to hesitate or resist. He was back in Teddy’s bedroom within a moment with the healing cream in his hand.

Snape was still kneeling where Harry left him, his hand moving slowly on his shirt, Teddy watching him closely. The man’s breathing was even, too even, Harry noticed, which meant he was probably repressing his painful groans.

Harry squatted next to them and held out his wand. “Let me help.” He offered, as he realized how much energy it must have taken for the man to repress any emotion or painful gasp. Harry wondered for a second why Snape maintained this facade, but then he glanced at the worriedly staring boy next to them.

“I do not-“ Snape spat but Harry placed a hand on his arm.

“Please.” He murmured and let the desperation leak into his tone. Snape looked at him, he seemed to consider Harry for a second then he let down his hand. Harry touched the tip of his wand to the front of Snape’s slightly bloody shirt. As he drove the wand down on the buttons, undoing them with magic, he couldn't help but notice the shiver that run through the man and raised the hair on Snape’s arm.

Harry kneeled behind his former professor and warmed up the jar of cream, before scooping out a bit with the tip of his pointing finger. Snape shrugged out of his shirt and Harry took a deep breath. Fortunately, his system still hadn’t recovered from the shock. He was sure that was the only reason why he wasn’t completely hard even though Snape was kneeling in front of him, half naked.

Harry always believed that the past left its mark on the man as well, but he never imagined how bad it would be. Snape’s back was scarred so badly, it sent another shock through Harry’s system. Next to the old scars, there were the fresh bruises as well, some red, some already turning into a mix of green and blue.

Teddy edged closer and stared at the white skin with something like panic on his childish face. Something Harry could completely relate to. He heard about what Voldemort did to his men, but he never saw the evidence of the brutal acts. Now, it was laid out in front of him by a man, Harry never imagined would open up for him like that.

“Is Seeus hurt because of me?” The boy asked, close to tears again and both of them looked at him.

“I’m alright, and it wasn’t your fault, boy.” Snape answered him as he reached out a hand and ruffled Teddy’s hair. “Just don't tell a word to my prince, okay?” The professor smiled at the kid, who looked at Harry for a second, uncertainty clouding his features.

He shrugged before he pulled his legs under his chin and started rocking back and force, probably trying to comfort himself, while watching Harry apply the salve on Snape’s skin.

Harry’s fingers moved with gentle tenacity, rubbing away the pain. He had done this a million times on his teammates or on himself, but he never felt this anxious about it. It was like edging around a sleeping dragon, he felt like one bad move would ruin everything.

“But Uncle Hally...” Teddy spoke hesitantly. “If it hurts for Teddy, you always kiss it better. Can't you kiss it better for Seeus?”

The boy’s innocent question sent a wild tremor through Harry’s body and he literally felt Snape’s whole body tense under his touch. Yes, the boy was right, Harry could kiss away the pain if the other man would be willing for that; however, the circumstances should be different. They wouldn’t be on the ground but in bed, most likely naked and most definitely without a two year old in the room.

“That’s what I’m doing.” Harry tried to explain with an awkward smile. “This will help him feel better within moments, you see.” He said, as he showed the boy the cream.

“No, you have to kiss it better.” The boy said, placing his head on his knees, munching on the tip of his pointing finger. Harry realized this was probably the guilt talking from the boy. He knew he had done something that caused pain to someone he liked. He tried to help the only way he could. It did not matter that wasn’t the best solution.

“Teddy love, this works faster.” Harry demurred.

“NO, you have to kiss it better!” Teddy shouted, jumping to his feet, huge teardrops falling from his bright blue eyes. His desperate and sad gaze told Harry more than that. ‘Please fix what I have broken.’

“Alright, alright, alright.” Harry heard himself say, despite of every inch in his body screaming that this would be a bad idea.

“Alright?” Snape asked in an alarmed tone, snapping his head back.

“Yes Snape, alright.” Harry growled, before he leaned over the white, scarred skin and placed a soft kiss on one of the bruises. Teddy sidled closer and pointed out an old mark.

“Here too.” He said.

“That doesn’t hurt him.” Harry replied, almost breathless, his lips burning from the previous touch.

But the boy repeated, “Here too.” His voice childish and headstrong, his small finger pushing into the scar on the lower half of Snape’s back.

“Oh for the love of Magic, Potter, just do it.” Snape hissed and Harry bent over, grasping the man’s shoulder with his left hand to steady himself. He kissed the scar on his former professor’s waist, then his fingers slid over it with the salve. The boy didn't need to point out the rest of the bruises for him, he kissed the man without any further resistance. He realized too late that the kisses become erotic within only moments into the treatment. His lips moved on the bruised skin heatedly, while he spread the ointment not with mere fingers anymore, but with his whole palm, caressing the slightly trembling man beneath him. Snape’s back was shining with the oily salve, and Harry knew he treated all the scars but he wasn’t willing to lean away just yet.

“Potter,” Snape snarled and there was a warning edge to his voice.

“Mmmm?” Harry murmured onto the skin, before kissing it once again. The headache that lingered in his mind all day now showed up once again, but having Snape under his lips seemed to be the perfect medication for it.

Potter.” Came another growl, more urging this time. “Stop... Please...” Snape moaned and the thick fog of arousal lifted from Harry’s mind. He leaned away immediately and looked around.

Teddy was watching them with wide eyes, a small grin playing on his lips. Snape was in a terrible form. His body was shaking, his hands clutched into fists so firmly, his knuckles were almost pure white. His raven hair cover his face like a curtain but Harry was glad he didn't have to look into the endless eyes, that would, Harry was sure about this, reflect endless amount  of hatred this time.

“Come on, Teddy, it’s time to go to bed.” Harry said softly, pulling up his godson from the ground.

“I don't wanna.” Teddy mumbled but as soon as he was under the blanket, his eyes started closing.

“Good night, love.” Harry smiled at the boy, giving him a tiny kiss on his forehead. From the corner of his eyes, he noticed Snape’s movements as he put on his shirt again and stood up.

“Seeus!” The boy snatched towards the other man too, his raised hand clutching into thin air, but Snape stepped closer to the bed.

“Good night, Teddy.” Snape spoke quietly. The boy managed to grasp the hem of his shirt and pulled him closer by that. The older man smiled gently and leaned over the kid too, and pressed a quick kiss on his forehead. Teddy giggled then snuggled his plush snake and drifted off into a hopefully peaceful dream.

The moment the boy’s eyes were closed, an iron fist grabbed Harry’s and pulled him out of the room. Gulping, Harry followed the man, not that he had any other option, as the hand around his own hand did not leave any option for movement. He was tossed into one of the empty guestrooms and the door closed surprisingly quietly behind him.

It was probably past nine already, thus the guestroom was covered in darkness. He wasn’t about to change this, as he did not want to look Snape in the eyes.

The man pulled out his wand with a swift motion and before the fear could even register in Harry, he realized Snape was simply casting a Silencing Charm. Then the man stepped forward, and Harry noticed in the moon light that the white shirt wasn’t completely buttoned up, just a few buttons in the middle.

“For the love of Magic, Potter, what the hell happened in there?” Snape hissed stopping about a foot away from Harry.

“I’m sorry, Snape-“

“If you touch me like that one more time, I swear to Merlin...” His former professor sneered. “This! This is the exact kind of behaviour I loathed in your father!”

“Don't bring my father into this.” Harry noted quietly while the man continued his lecture.

“You walk over people, not even regarding them, not stopping to even consider them just for a mere second! Just like him!” He barked furiously.

“Do not bring my father into this.” Harry insisted his tone flaring up because this had nothing to do with James Potter, only with Harry and his inability to keep his lust in control.

“You’ve just proven me right in everything I have thought about you during your years at Hogwarts! You are brash, you run into everything not taking just one damn second to consider the consequences, you’re imprudent and you're selfish just like your beloved father!” Snape spat one threatening step closer.

“LEAVE MY FATHER OUT OF THIS!” Harry shouted, his face only inches away from the man. “This has nothing to do with my father and I am not like him!”

“You're exactly like him, Potter!” Snape turned away with a swift motion, his shirt shifting in the sudden move, revealing a bit of his navel and the dark line of hair that disappeared under the man’s belt, and Harry hated himself for noticing this. “You inconsiderate-“

“Inconsiderate?” Harry yelled back heatedly. “I was helping you!”

“Helping?” Snape laughed bitterly aloud. “Helping?” He moved closer to Harry again, and they stood face to face when he spoke quietly next. “While you had your lips on my skin, did it ever occur to you that I am a man?” Snape hissed and though his voice was only a whisper, it terrified Harry more than the previous shouting. The dark eyes narrowed as they connected onto the green ones, before Snape went on. “While you kissed my skin, did it ever occur to you that I am a man, who is attracted to my own gender?” He stepped closer and his tone dropped an octave as he leaned to Harry’s ear and murmured, “While you caressed my skin, did it ever occur to you that I am a man, who has not been touched for more than five years?”

Harry’s whole body shuddered at the idea that three sentences indicated. Cupidity burned each and every particle in his system, and he longed to touch the man again.

Snape stepped away and pinched the bridge of his nose. “Do not touch me like that ever again, Potter.” He said resolutely, as he looked Harry in the eyes. “Unless...”

Snape walked to the door but this time Harry grabbed his wrist. “Unless?” He asked full of uncertainty and curiosity that haunted him ever since his fifth year.

Snape’s eyes darkened by several shades and they seemed to burn. “Unless you-“

Teddy’s desperate cries broke through the Silencing Charm, like a warning call that implied that whatever Snape wanted to say was better left unspoken. They shared one more intense glance then rushed out of the empty room.

 

o.O.o

 

Potter and his reckless impulses, Severus fumed and felt like he was back to teaching this imbecile. His head threatened to break into pieces soon as he walked behind Potter on the way to the crying child. As he forced his gaze away from the tempting arse right in front of him, he felt another rush of arousal flood his system and with that an agonizing pain slashed through his mind too. He massaged the bridge of his nose, trying to calm himself.

“Teddy, love, what happened?” Potter asked the boy, squatting next to the bed.

“There’s something in the shadows.” Teddy answered trembling with fear, pointing towards the bookcase that almost fell on them.

“There’s nothing there, honey, it was just a bad dream.” Potter smiled kindly and Severus heard other calming mumbles from the young man but only half of his attention was there. He turned around to inspect the bookcase that seemed to vibrate with magic. As he walked around it, he picked up a small noise.

Surprised he kneeled down and reached into his pocket for his wand, cautiously observing the dark shadows around the bookcase in case a Lethifold decided to visit Twelve Grimmauld Place. He casted a nonverbal Lumos and almost fell back in astonishment. The miniature, almost cat sized lion was still alive, shaking vehemently, most probably terrified of being casted into living by a two year old, not comprehending a second of his newly created life.

Severus reached behind the bookcase to grab a hold of the frightened animal, which growled threateningly and flashed its small yet sharp fangs at Severus.

“I had enough of you bloody lions for today. Come here right away.” The man almost growled back, and was surprised to notice that the animal stopped snarling. With a quick motion, he grabbed the small lion at the back of his neck and pulled it out. As Severus held it up in the air, the previously vicious predator hung like a kitten, its paws pulled up to its body, even its tail curled up, the small tuft at the end of it, swaying gently. The yellow eyes seemed to look at Severus with something like panic and asked for mercy.

Severus walked to the bed and showed his discovery to Potter. “I think I found the culprit.” He noted as he pushed the animal in the younger man’s face. “Your two year old godson created an animal out of a plush toy. I believe congratulation is in order.”

Teddy started crying loudly again, most likely still afraid of the animal that had previously harmed him.

“Then turn it back!” Potter flared up, his hand sliding calmingly in the boy’s soft brown hair.

“I’m not in the habit of killing innocent animals, Potter. If it troubles you, I suggest you take matters into your own hand.” Snape reacted as he reached the numbly hanging animal to the man.

“I didn't say kill it, I said turn it back to a freaking plush toy.” Potter yelled agonized.

“And care to tell, Mister Potter, what is the difference? This animal was given life, accidently I give you that, but the fact remains. Taking it back is murder, something I never intend to commit again.”

“What?” Potter’s eyes went wide, while Teddy cried even louder.

“Maybe if you were to silence that child, you could hear what I am telling you.” Snape suggested, almost shouting, his previous irritation with the young man and his sexual frustration mixing into something close to fury.

“That is what I am currently trying to do.” Potter hissed also furiously.

“You should try harder then.” Severus snapped.

“I’m up for suggestions, you know.” Potter looked at him, anger contorting his handsome face, while the boy sobbed even more eagerly.

“I’m sure you are familiar with at least a few Silencing Charms.”

“Snape, I’m quite sure that is not how you are supposed to raise a child.” Potter jumped up and leaned into his face. That moment Severus realized all his sudden irritation was rooted in the fact that he wanted to fuck Potter, preferably right away. He needed to calm down right that instant before that need took control over his whole mind. He stepped away and pushed the small animal onto Potter’s chest then turned around with a dramatic move. Without any further comment he marched out of the room and down into the kitchen.

He needed to calm himself and the best way for that was to do something familiar with his hands, which did not require any brain activity. He walked to the stove and started preparing two cups of coffee meticulously. With each movement followed by a deep breath, he began calming after a few minutes. His agitating headache and arousal shifted into shame and ruefulness. How could he be such an asshole with an innocent kid?

Absentmindedly, he poured the liquid life into two mugs, added some milk and cinnamon to one then walked back upstairs. Potter was where he left him, holding the small lion in his right hand, which was trying to claw its way away from the Auror, while with his left hand he was attempting to calm Teddy who squatted into the corner of his bed, as far from the lion as possible.

“Here.” Severus said softly as he kneeled next to Potter and placed the mug in front of the man, before he carefully pulled the animal off the younger man’s shoulder. He sipped from his own mug, let the hot liquid caress his throat before he put down his own cup too, and started calming the lion.

Potter lifted the mug to his lips, took a deep breath but froze and looked sideways at Severus.

“You do not have to drink it, if you do not like it.” Severus noted with as less edge in his voice as he could muster.

“No it’s... how did you know about the cinnamon?” Potter asked, eyes narrowing.

“I believe we have a more important matter at hand.” Severus noted, nodding his head towards the curled up, sobbing kid under Potter’s hand.

“Not even Hermione knows that I drink my coffee with cinnamon when I’m upset.”

“I probably saw you do it before, Potter. As I told you, you don't have to drink it, if you don't like it.”

Potter took a sip and his eyes closed in pleasure. “Perfect.” He mumbled and Severus suspected he wasn’t supposed to hear that. The Auror put down the mug and stood up, taking his godson in his arms. Swaying in the dark room, he started mumbling to him. The child however wasn’t willing to stop crying, and continuously kept an eye on the lion in Severus’ arm.

“I couldn't turn it back.” Potter said quietly, not meeting Severus’ eyes. “Finite Incantatem didn't work. I think it’s permanent.”

Severus stood up too, and walked towards Potter and the child with the trembling animal in his arms. He caressed the small lion gently.

“He’s not going to hurt you, Teddy.” He mumbled to the boy as he stepped at arms length but Teddy only burrowed his head deeper into Potter.

“He’s probably as scared of you as you are of him.” Potter tried too, realizing what Severus wanted to achieve. “And I think he has a fever.” Potter noted, looking now at Severus. “Sirius warned me, he might be coming down with something, he’s been sneezing all morning.”

Severus nodded; they had to solve the more urging problem before they can deal with the fever, which could be resolved with a simple potion.

“Scared?” The boy asked back, sniffling.

“Yes, scared.” Severus confirmed, turning the little lion towards Teddy to see it. “Why don't you show the cowardly lion, how brave you are, hm?”

“Teddy reached out a slightly trembling hand to touch the animal, what clawed into Severus, but he didn't show it. As soon as Teddy buried his small fingers into the thick brown mane and petted the animal, it stopped shaking and the claws ceased slashing into him too. The lion made a pleasant growl and arched into the kind caress much like a cat.

Potter let out a relieved laughter, then put Teddy back onto the bed. Severus kneeled next to him with the lion. While Potter went out for the medicine, Severus let the little boy and the small sized lion get to know each other better. Teddy let the animal sniff him and then, he turned into a wolf cub and sniffed back. It took the lion a second to actually realize that the boy and wolf were the same, but Severus supposed the scent was identical, so eventually the lion calmed down too.

Teddy lied under the covers and the miniature lion snuggled up to him. The boy’s blue eyes looked hazy and his small cheeks pink and Severus felt surprisingly worried about him. Potter returned and when Teddy saw the bottle of potion in his hand, he sat upright and, folded his arms, pouting.

“No.” He said resolutely.

“Yes Teddy. We don't want you to get sick. You have to take this.”

“No!” Teddy answered.

“C’mon.” Potter urged him, kneeling next to Severus.

No!” Teddy shouted. “I don't like it!”

“I know love, but you don't like being sick either. This can help you to not get sick.” The Auror responded calmly.

“NO!” Yelled the boy, turning his head away. He sniffed once more then turned into a wolf before his godfather or Severus could force the medicine down his throat. The Potions Professor reached towards him to pet him gently, and calm him down as the little wolf cub started growling at them in synchrony with the lion. However Teddy appeared to be feeling threatened by the adult and he bit Severus’ hand.

“Teddy!” Potter cried loudly and the boy covered in the corner of his bed. “We don't bite, remember?”

“It’s alright.” Severus smiled at the boy. “The sudden move must have been startling for him.” Severus said apologetically, observing the slightly bleeding scratch on the top of his hand. “It’s a pity, however. I had high hopes of seeing you at the wedding tomorrow. But I’m afraid that won't happen now.” He remarked, shaking his head lightly.

“What?” Potter and Teddy asked simultaneously.

“Well, sick boys cannot attend the wedding. You wouldn’t want to make the beautiful bride sick now, would you Teddy?” Severus queried slyly. Potter managed to cover up his snickering with coughing.

“I wanna go to the wedding!” Teddy shouted now on all fours, crawling back in the middle of the bed.

“Well then, drink the potion.” Severus argued.

“NO.” The boy reacted.

“All those cakes...” Potter sighed disappointed. “Now I will have to eat them all.”

NO!” Teddy yelled as he launched towards Potter and tried to snatch the potion from his hand. Potter opened it for him and gave it into the small hands, which clutched the little bottle and the boy downed the whole vial. He hiccupped, then his ears smoked for a second, then it was all over.

“Go to bed now.” Potter laughed, covering him with the blanket. Teddy closed his eyes and cuddled the lion in one and his plush snake in his other hand, then seemed to fall asleep with one last sigh.

Severus remained where he was, watching the sleeping form of the boy and suddenly felt very tired himself. He took a deep breath and rubbed his eyes with his thumb and pointing finger. Who would have guessed that there would come a time when he would be genuinely concerned about a young boy, especially this given child, who was the son of his school nemesis. Not to mention his more than inappropriate feelings for the other younger man right next to him.

“May I stay for the night?” He asked not looking at Potter and he heard a sudden and sharp exhale break out from the Auror’s throat. He didn't know what to think of it, as Potter’s voice was soft when he answered.

“Yes, please stay.”

“I do not wish to cause you any worry, however I am concerned about the child.” Severus sighed, looking at Potter. His explanation was forgotten as he noticed the young man’s deep blush and wide eyes.

“What? That’s why you... oh. Of course. No trouble at all.” Potter stuttered turning away and walking towards the door.

Severus shook his head and went after him. “Fever can be a symptom for many maladies that attack children, from the common cold to Dragon Pox. The latter one could be quiet deadly, and given you never had it as a child, you are endangered as well.”

“Alright, yeah. I guess it would be safer to have you here. I’m not really specialized in potions for Dragon Pox.”

“I had to brew it a couple of times back in Hogwarts.”

“You can have the room two doors from mine, if that’s okay.” Potter offered, steering him that way. “It’s one of the cleanest and most organized. That’s what Ron usually uses if he stays here.” As he talked, they arrived to the room, which was painted light blue, had a comfortable looking, huge four-poster bed and two smaller cabinets. A few orange posters hanged on the walls, but Severus couldn't decide what they represented.

“I believe your friend would not like the idea of sleeping in a bed I previously occupied even if for only a night.” Severus smiled, looking at Potter.

“Oh, he wouldn’t mind.” Harry said, shrugging.

Severus simply raised an eyebrow mutely.

“Yeah, he would probably mind, wouldn’t he.” Harry laughed walking around the room as if inspecting if it was spotless. He must have found everything correct because he leaned against the bed and crossed his arms on his chest. “Good thing he’s not here, then.”

“If you are sure Mr. Weasley would be offended, then I shall take it.” Severus smirked, stepping inside the room too. It was just slightly awkward to be in a room with Potter and a huge bed that screamed to be used.

Potter closed his eyes for a second, then stepped forward. “Give me your hand.” He told Severus softly, who obeyed instantly despite usually resenting orders.

The Auror took his hand in his, the warm skin almost burning Severus’ senses. Potter inspected the bite mark and all Severus could hope for was that Potter would not attempt to kiss this better too, because he was sure his calm composure would break the moment he felt those soft lips on his skin again. However, something even worse happened.

Potter slid his palm over the injury, his touch almost feather light. Suddenly, Severus sensed the younger man’s magic being unleashed before it healed him. He felt the warm caress of Potter’s powerful magic but not only on his hand. The magic brushed against his whole body like a cat who wanted to be petted. Severus could feel his own magic react to the initiated connection. It twirled and pulsed under his skin like thousands of tiny snakes and Severus was too late to stop it.

His magic rushed through his system like an untamed river and he knew exactly when it reached Potter because the green eyes went wide and Potter gasped lightly. It felt like a channel had been opened between them and now Potter’s magic oozed in him, while his seeped into the young man.

The magical transaction left both of them speechless, confused and breathless but the worst was that Severus felt like he just had an orgasm, while in reality his cock throbbed, demanding to be touched. He swayed slightly and stepped away from Potter, who looked at him and Severus was sure for a second that the other man felt the same way; satisfied yet eager for more.

Potter let go of his hand as if it was burning him.

“You... uhm... you are going to be okay.” He cleared his throat. “He has bitten me numerous times already. You won't change.” It took a second for Severus to realize what the Auror was talking about. “Night.” Potter said then and flounced out the room.

Severus collapsed on the bed and covered his head with his arms. He wanted nothing more than to drift off into unconsciousness so that he wouldn’t have to deal with all this right now. However, sleep seemed to elude him that night.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry didn't know what had awoken him. He listened hard to the voices around him and for a second he didn't hear anything unusual. Then the soft murmuring broke through the thick haze of his dreams and he realized that someone was talking in Teddy’s room.

He climbed out of the bed and opened his door noiselessly. He sneaked to the boy’s door but what he saw was nothing like what he expected.

Through the big window, Harry could see how the dark night sky was tainted by the first touch of the rising sun and over that tiny orange spot, green lights danced on the starry blackness. Like souls lost deep in the past, the green and purple lights waved on the sky. Their slow waltz seemed like a ribbon’s dance in the wind. That moment it seemed like only the stars followed the elegant moves and blinked with their rhythm.

And in the midst of all that beauty stood Severus Snape, swaying slowly with Teddy in his arms, whispering softly to the sleeping child in a voice, which was smoother than the darkest night and made Harry’s heart dance with the aurora lights on the sky.

He watched the man with rare clarity, while listening to the tale of unicorns and Hippogriffs. For that simple second everything seemed crystal clear. His affection for the man obvious and somehow understandable, like a logical step he was ought to take a long time ago. His heart felt feathery light and a smile broke out on his lips as he finally comprehended what he wanted was right in front of him.

Family and home. Nothing else.

All the tension during that day was caused by the uncertainty of his own emotions as well of the insecurity he felt whenever Snape was in the picture. As he watched the man now, it dawned in him that this wasn’t just attraction he felt towards the man, not at all. He should have known ever since that moment he saw the man with Fawkes behind him on that bright morning years ago, that he was fond of this witty dark enigma, called Severus Snape. Hermione knew, Harry apprehended with a sudden urge to laugh. Back in the hospital, she knew it already and that was why she had never asked, why Harry was doing everything for Snape.

Harry smiled, however the pain was immense. Severus Snape was a friend, nothing more and Harry was sure the man wouldn’t even want anything else from someone like Harry Potter.

But the problem was, Harry was a Gryffindor. And Gryffindors weren’t keen on giving up. He took a deep breath and let the determination warm his heart.

“I could not sleep.” Snape spoke before Harry could say anything. “So I came in here to check on him. He was crying slightly, another nightmare he said... so I took him up.” He whispered in the darkness as he put the boy back to bed. Teddy mumbled something, turned on his side and went back to sleep again, while his little lion curled around him once more.

Snape didn't want to look at Harry, maybe he thought he did something wrong.

“Thank you.” Harry said softly, watching the man sit down next to the bed and lean against the wall. Harry sat down too as they watched the sleeping child for a few moments.

“I can't wait to have my own.” Harry murmured pensively.

“What in this terrible day convinced you that having a child might be remotely fun?” Snape looked at him with raised eyebrows and Harry almost laughed.

“Wait, I thought you enjoyed yourself with us today.” He smiled observing the man’s distinctive profile.

“Enjoyed?” Snape asked back astonished but Harry could see the corner of his lips lift slightly. “Let’s see, during the last twelve hours, I was bitten numerous times, licked, injured and ridiculed. Not quite my idea of enjoyment.”

Not to mention being sexually harassed by his former student, Harry thought before he started grinning. “Don't deny it. You had fun. I know it.”

“You seem to think you know an awful lot, Potter.”

“I feel like the more I get to know you the less I actually understand.”

“Should it not be the other way around?”

“Yes, it should.” Harry sighed.

“You are aware of my past.” Snape said slowly, carefully weighing every word. “You must know that I never wanted to be a father. It never even occurred to me.”

 “You would be a great father you know. I watched you with Teddy today and you did well. He likes you.”

“However my past-“

“No one cares about your past, not here, Snape.” Harry noted edging closer to the older man.

“He’s a remarkable child.” Snape laughed and Harry closed his eyes in pleasure. “He is stubborn, just like Black and wild, just like Lupin. And an idiot, like you.” He grunted and that made Harry chuckle. “And yet he made me realize how much I want a family of my own.”

The Gryffindor in Harry wanted to offer help with that but he knew it would have been spoken out of tiredness only. This was something that needed a carefully elaborated plan, he couldn’t just jump Snape.

“You would be an amazing dad.” He said firmly instead and stood up. He reached a hand towards Snape who watched it for a second then accepted it and let himself be pulled up. Harry didn't let go of the warm hand and guided Snape towards his own bedroom. The man followed him silently, without the slightest notion of irritation or confusion about where they are heading. He only seemed to stop when they reached the threshold.

“Leave the door open so we can hear him if he cries.” Harry uttered ever so quietly, as his hand slipped out from Snape’s and he went to the right side of the bed. Without any further word, he lied down and pulled the covers over his body.

He let out the shaky breath he didn't even know he was holding in when the bed dipped slightly under the other man’s weight.

“Night, Snape.” He whispered.

“Night, Potter,” came the answer from the other side of the bed.

Chapter Text

Severus woke up feeling a soft paw on his face and something sniffing in his ear. It took more than a minute to realize where he was and what was happening. And more importantly, in whose bed he was currently lying. Potter. His stomach clenched from the idea of that.

“Shh, leave him, Teddy,” came the well-known voice as a mere whisper, which sent a shiver down Severus’ whole body. The man assumed the wolf pup had turned back into his human form again, as now it was the soft child hands that kneaded his cheek.

“He’s spiky.” The boy chuckled, while his other hand was playing with Severus’ black hair. “But he’s soft here.”

Severus could hear Potter’s light laugh. “Come Teddy, don't wake him.”

There was a child on his face Severus thought, he shouldn’t feel this content.

“I won't.” Teddy answered, clumsy hands all over Severus’ arm and shoulder as the boy tried to climb over him to see his face. “He’s sleeping.” He whispered right into Severus’ face, the childish voice making the man smile.

“Is he really?” Severus murmured back with that soft smile still on his face. He opened his eyes just to see bright blue eyes staring wide open at him. Then Teddy let out a loud squeak and tried to retreat but Severus grabbed him to hold him gently down where he was, while quickly drawing his wand from under the pillow. He whispered a Levitating Spell and suddenly Teddy was hanging upside down in the air squealing and giggling and laughing loudly.

“Uncle Hally! Uncle Hally!” The boy shouted for help between fits of laughter but it never arrived.

“That’s your mess.” Potter laughed with a shrug. “I told you not to wake him.” He looked at Severus, his gaze warmer than the morning sunshine. “Good Morning.”

“Good Morning to you as well.” Severus couldn't help but smile at the young man, who offered him his bed in the middle of the night. “Shall I feel special, or do you wake every guest like this around here?” He flicked his wand, while giving a sly grin to the boy up in the air. Teddy started swaying closer to the ceiling than to the ground, his loud, cheerful giggles echoing all around the house.

“You’re special all right, but when you have an almost three year old around, it’s not really a surprise to wake up like this.” Potter laughed, leaning back on his elbows, watching the boy above them. “I’m just surprised he didn't lick you.”

“He wouldn’t dare.” Severus remarked in a low voice then lowered the child onto the blanket he had been sharing with Potter before.

“I made you something.” Teddy giggled as his small legs touched the ground again. He climbed to the end of the bed and came back with a piece of paper. He scrambled back in between Severus and Potter, then he dropped his head onto the older man’s shoulder. The soft light-brown, almost blonde curly hair tickled Severus’ neck.

He looked down on the paper. There were two stick men on it, but it was barely recognizable that they were even people. But no matter how hard Severus tried he couldn't figure out what the yellow and grey strings around them were.

“Who are these people, Teddy?” Harry asked, leaning closer, his magic once again, brushing up against Severus, much more fervently than during any previous occasions. What happened between them in the other room yesterday? His contemplation was disturbed by the little boy’s answer.

“Uncle Hally and Uncle Seeus.” The boy said quietly, his head still resting on Severus. When did he make it into uncle? And why?

Severus pointed at the lines around the two stick figures. “And what is this?” He asked but the boy didn't answer to him. Why did it seem important? It was just a drawing from a child. Why was it still so familiar, yet not at all recognizable? “Teddy, what are these lines around Uncle Harry and... Uncle Seeus?”

Teddy giggled again but Severus was so full of anticipation for the answer, he didn't even dare take a breath.

“Magic.” The boy laughed and pressed a sloppy kiss on Severus’ cheek, smearing saliva all over him.

Severus turned towards Potter who was watching the drawing with a frown on his face. The warm sensation that burned inside him forced his eyes wide open and it took him a second to realize that something warm was indeed pressed to his chest.

The ring was burning hot against his skin, yet its touch wasn’t painful.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus stood in the kitchen with a huge mug of delicious black coffee in his hand. He couldn't stop his fingers, which relentlessly moved over his chest and stomach, enjoying the touch of the silk shirt on his skin.

Potter’s silk shirt, to be precise. The younger man had taken his blood stained one and given him this without even the slightest pause. He spent the night in Potter’s house, in Potter’s bed and now he was wearing his shirt. This shouldn’t have felt so acceptable, given this so called friendship had only been established for a day. Yet it did, and more than acceptable, Severus thought. It felt right.

He heard the front door open and then close quietly. He suspected who it would be, but still reached for his wand; old habits die hard, especially when you had to serve a lunatic for almost two decades.

“Severus!” Remus Lupin cried in surprise when stepping into the kitchen, he noticed him.

“Lupin.” Severus reacted with cold politeness in his voice. He did spend the previous day with this man’s child, being polite was the least he could do. But maybe there was something else as well.

“What... what are you doing here this early?” The werewolf asked, pouring some coffee for himself. He seemed very weak and pale, but that did not surprise anyone, who had knowledge about his condition.

“I needed a book.” Severus answered shortly.

“That was yesterday.” Remus smiled knowingly. “He’s my husband, did you honestly think he wouldn’t mention something like you showing up after five years of silence?”

“It’s good to know that Black is still unable to shut his mouth.” Severus remarked bitterly.

Lupin just laughed at that. “So what brings you here this early in the morning?” He asked again with a slightly sharp edge in his voice.

Severus smirked at his old enemy. “I never left.”

Lupin’s eyes widened slightly, no one would have noticed, it almost eluded even Severus, except he was expecting that reaction. The blue eyes, just as Teddy’s, bright and intelligent, racked his body up and down.

“Wait...isn’t that Harry’s shirt?” The werewolf asked slowly, head tilted to the right. At that second, Severus knew exactly what crazy thought appeared behind those blue eyes. Yes, Remus Lupin, his childhood nemesis was thinking about Severus Snape fucking the famous Harry Potter.

Severus had to admit, he liked the thought very much indeed. He raised his eyebrow and let the tip of his mouth curve up just a bit. He was enjoying the situation more than he should, but at the same time, he did not have any wish to renew his enmity with the most important people in Potter’s life.

“I was brewing a potion for Potter. After it was ready, your son turned ill and I was concerned about... his wellbeing. Dragon Pox isn’t unusual at his age, and Potter had informed me that he is not an expert in making the antidote for it, while I myself had prepared it several times.” Severus explained, looking out the window.

“That doesn’t explain why you have his shirt on right now.” Lupin answered.

Severus looked at the man and was surprised to see no disgust or contempt in the kind eyes.

“Teddy had a little bit of accident with magic.” Potter walked in too with the boy in his arms and the miniature lion at his feet. “He made a lion.”

“He what?” Lupin exclaimed.

“Made a lion out of a plush toy. It then scratched him. That’s why Snape needed a new shirt. His is a bit bloody.” Potter explained. “But don't worry, he’s okay now and they became friends during the night.” He added hastily.

“Daddy!!” Teddy squealed happily, trying to jump out of Potter’s arm to get to his father. Lupin took the child and kissed him.

“Hello pup. Did you really make a lion?”

“Aham. Look!” The boy motioned towards the ground where the mini animal was lying lazily.

“Dear Merlin.” The werewolf breathed amazed, looking first at Potter then at Severus, his gaze filled with astonishment. “I don't know what to say.”

“Let’s start with a thank you to Snape.” Potter noted conversationally. “He made them friends. And helped me with him all yesterday.”

“Oh really?” Lupin grinned and looked at Severus, who tried to act nonchalantly and just tipped his head slightly. “Well in that case, thank you, Severus.”

“I was expecting Sirius. What happened to him?” Potter asked.

To Severus’ surprise, Lupin blushed lightly, before pressing the little boy to his shoulder and covering his ear with his hand. “Me.” He confessed when he was sure his son could no longer listen in the conversation. “He’s a bit tired at the moment.”

“Okay,” Potter groaned, “I see.” He shook his head then he added. “So, see you at the wedding, then?”

“Yes. I don't know when we can make it there though, probably just around one. Sirius needs some rest”

“I’ll be there in about...” Potter looked at his watch. “... an hour. What about you, Snape?” Severus snapped up his head upon hearing his name and blinked at Potter.

“Excuse me?” He drawled.

“When will you come to the wedding? It starts at two. We will be there sooner, helping Molly and the others out. But of course you don't have to be there that early.”

“And what exactly makes you think I will even appear?”

“Well, you did make a promise to a little boy, did you not?” Potter grinned shamelessly.

“I-“

“Well Severus, it’s not nice to break a promise like that...” Lupin smiled too, before he could protest.

“We shall see.” He assented reluctantly. He had no intention to go to the wedding, neither did he want to break a promise he made to a small boy.

“Alright, we need to go.” Lupin said, waving with his free hand then turned around.

“Lupin?” Severus called after him, deliberately ignoring Potter’s head that turned towards him. “You’re not taking the Wolfsbane Potion, are you?” The almost relaxed atmosphere in the kitchen cooled down with several degrees.

“No one can make it.” The werewolf answered distantly. “Harry is the best potionist in the family and he’s working hard to produce a working one but even he can't make it.”

“I understand that I’m not family, but you should have just asked.” Severus murmured feeling a bit fed up with idiots. He considered the other man for a moment then took a notebook from the counter and wrote down his address. He held it out to Lupin. “I expect you to collect the first portion a week before the next full moon.” He instructed.

Lupin stared at him, frowning. “Why would you do that?” He asked in a low voice, almost as a whisper.

Severus looked at Potter for a second then snapped his eyes at the little boy fidgeting in his father’s arms. “Because no boy should be afraid of his father.” He answered softly.

 

o.O.o

 

After walking his godson and Remus out of the door, Harry went back to the kitchen with the mail in his hands. Snape was still holding on to the mug of coffee, though Harry was sure it hadgone cold a long time ago. Seeing his own shirt on the man sent a warm sensation through his body from the first moment he had seen him in it and it did not change even later on. His previous urge to kiss the man renewed yet again. How many times was it already? When they woke up next to each other, when Snape prepared coffee for both of them, when the man offered help with the Wolfsbane Potion and now. Given they had been up for only about twenty minutes, Harry started suspecting that he had developed a new obsession.

He paged through the letters absentmindedly. He dropped the first two on the table, they were just the monthly report from Gringotts and the Ministry. The third one was from Hagrid, who was spending more and more time in France with Olympe. He smiled and placed the postcard on the cupboard, next to the other ones. The last one didn't have any sender, nothing indicated where it came from. It was just a simple white envelope. Harry closed his eyes and swept his palm a few inches over the paper, searching for harmful charms, but he did not find any, so he tore the envelope open.

His eyes roamed the content of the letter that fell out, skimming the words in a fast pace.

“What?” Snape queried hastily stepping closer, when he noticed how Harry suddenly paled. The younger man thrust the letter into the other’s hand as if it was contagious.

Snape read it too, murmuring under his breath. He looked up at Harry when he finished and groaned frustrated, “Fuck.”

All of a sudden, Harry forgot the letter and basically everything else too, while that one word echoed in his mind. “Did you just say fuck?”

“Don't be that surprised,” Snape sneered, rolling his eyes.

“I am.” Harry reacted honestly.

Snape blinked exasperatedly. “Fuck.” He repeated. “Fuck.” He said again, stepping closer to Harry, who was staring at him incredulously and aroused. “Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.” With every word, he came closer to the younger man. “Fuck.” He whispered, leaning to the Gryffindor’s ear.

“Me-“ Harry moaned harshly and hoped he didn’t say it out loud. Judging however, by Snape’s quirked eyebrow and the way he stepped back hurriedly Harry assumed he did say it aloud. “Khm... meanwhile...” he corrected himself, trying to save his dignity, “I assume something must be done about this.” He tapped the letter in Snape’s hand.

He stepped away from the Slytherin and waved his hand. Two glasses and a bottle of Firewhiskey appeared on the table.

“Potter, it’s only eight in the morning.” Snape remarked,

“Yes.” Harry nodded before he downed a half glass of whiskey. “And someone just told me, in details, how they want to murder me.”

“Drinking yourself to stupor is still probably not the best way to handle the situation.” Snape sneered. “I thought you would be accustomed to such letters by now.”

“That’s the thing.” Harry looked up and emptied his glass. “I never had to deal with this kind of stuff.”

“You never received any threats after you killed the Dark Lord?” Snape asked disbelievingly.

“Of course I did.” The young man scoffed. “I ended the bloody... man. But I never personally dealt with it. The Ministry does. All the threats considering the Phoenixes go to them. Even yours. Minerva made sure of that.”

“Are you telling me you never actually read any of those threats?”

“I read a few, but that’s not my point. This place is still under the Fidelius Charm. You can't send an owl here, unless you know exactly where you have to send that bird. See where I’m going?”

“They know where you live.” Snape nodded.

“They know exactly where I live. They can walk through the original wards.”

“Please tell me you have other wards drawn around the place.” Snape groaned as he pinched the bridge of his nose.

“Of course I do! Wait a second, didn't you feel them, when you came through?”

“No.”

“What?”

“Well I sensed them, but they were not warnings.”

“Wh... But how is that even possible? They are still up, I can feel them.” A revelation hit Harry like a hammer. Something was going on here. The threat was long gone from his list of priorities.

“I think you have a bigger problem than my person.” Snape noted with a sigh.

“I might have made a mistake.” Harry murmured mostly to himself, looking around, hoping that his wards might give him a sign.

“Because your wards let me come through?” Snape snapped, and Harry looked back at the man, suspecting why the smooth, dark voice turned suddenly distant and cold.

“Well... yes.” Harry acknowledged but before he could explain further Snape interrupted him angrily.

“You should have noted I am an unwanted guest here, Potter. Believe it or not, I have better things to do with my life than waste it on babysitting a child, not to mention spending any more time in your illustrious company. I did not want to be here.” Snape spat sneering, turning around with a swift motion and marching towards the door. His voice cut like a sharp blade.

“That’s a lie.” Harry said quietly, his own tone the exact opposite of the older man’s, shaking and uncertain.

Snape spun around. “A lie, is it now? Did you think that this was what I secretly dreamt about all these years? To spend my days longing after the friendship of the famous Harry Potter? To watch over the spawn of the two men who made my childhood a living hell? Keep your fucking book, Potter, because I’d rather deal with that imbecile Oblansk, even if he does not speak English, than to remain in your debt once more in my life.”

“For the love of Magic, don't you realise what’s going on?” Harry shouted at the man.

“Oh I do.” Snape sneered. “For the great Harry Potter, I am no more than a puny mortal, not even significant enough to be welcomed in his home.” The Potions Master turned around again and headed towards the door with resolute steps.

“You bloody idiot!” Harry groaned exasperated. “Don't you see? My wards are treating you as family!”

Snape stopped dead in his track. The silence in the kitchen was almost tangible.

“Repeat that.” Snape said softly.

“If anyone tries to step through the wards, they send me a... a sign. If I want the person inside, I can key them into the wards, temporarily or permanently. If I don’t, I just don't do anything and the wards will take care of the person. Sirius, Remus, Teddy, Hermione, and the Weasleys. They are permanently keyed into the wards.”

“How did I get keyed into your wards?”

“Snape c’mon, you’re supposed to be the intelligent one here!” Harry moaned, driving a hand through his hair. The other man turned back slowly and his black eyes stared intently at Harry.

He was deep in his thoughts for a second then Harry could almost see the exact second when the thought click in place.

“You didn't get a signal when I stepped through.” He said and there was no doubt in the deep voice.

“Exactly.” Harry nodded. “There is only one person, who can come and go through the wards which then don't send the warning sign. And that’s me. All the other times, even if it’s just Ron jumping in to grab a bite while I’m not home, I know about it.”

“Maybe you were surprised when you saw me and you did not notice.” Snape argued stepping closer, but Harry could hear he wasn’t convinced that would be the case.

“You know it doesn’t work like that. You feel it. I can't explain how, but you do. It’s like a pinch, or a caress. There’s no way I would miss out on it, no matter how shocked I am. Not to mention I still don't feel you in my house.”

“You don't feel me?” Snape asked with a raised eyebrow.

“This house... it’s... how should I say it... It’s interlaced with my magic. I worked on it for five years and I used both normal and magical ways to clean it. I know if there are other people in the house, I know where they are exactly, in what corner of what room. I don't feel you. You walk freely. Does that make sense?”

“You explanation does, what is happening does not.” Snape sighed. “Why did you not mention this before?”

“I did not even realize it until I had the letter in my hand. At first, I thought the wards are wrong and that’s why you could walk in like that. But they are not, they are functioning perfectly.”

“They must be wrong, Potter.”

“Unless...” Harry started hesitantly.

“No. That’s impossible.” Snape retorted immediately.

“Why?”

“How, would be a better question. How would it possible for me to have your magical signature?” Snape asked.

“It is possible.” Harry stated not liking where this was going.

“Potter, there are two ways for that to happen. One is to be linked to each other, as in magically, and I am quite certain that is not our case, as I believe I would remember consummating any bond, marriage or union with you. The second option is blood relation.”

Harry’s insides froze with that last sentence. He took a deep breath. “That can't... You didn't... You and...” Terror gripped into his heart and he couldn't finish the sentence.

Snape stared at him incredulously. “Do not even ask me the question you are thinking of right now.”

“You can't be my father, right?”

“Oh for Merlin’s sake, are you fucking kidding me?!” Snape shouted and rubbed his eyes as if he was trying to get the image out of his mind. “How can you even ask that?!”

“Answer me, Snape, can you or can you not?!”

“Bloody hell, Potter do you realize that the thought itself causes me almost permanent impotency? Didn't I tell you I was gay?”

“Accidents happen,” Harry snapped, feeling like his blood was boiling. It couldn't be, not Snape. Not the only man he was attracted to. Panic clenched his guts and clouded his logic. “Please, just say it!”

“Potter, as a child you were the spitting image of your father, of James Bloody Potter! Do you think that was, what, a coincidence?” Snape shouted then grabbed the collar of Harry’s shirt and pulled him closer. “I’m attracted to men and men only. I could never even get hard enough to fuck a woman, not to mention, I have never wanted more than friendship from Lily Evans. I most certainly did not have sex with your mother, Potter. We are not blood related.”

Harry dropped his head, letting his chin rest on Snape’s firmly seizing fist. The relief that washed over him, made him suddenly dizzy, the sick feeling in the pit of his stomach slowly dissipating. His panicked thoughts swirled in his mind, not making any sense at all.

“And I even have proof of that.” Snape noted softly now. “If I had your blood in me, Albus wouldn’t have sent you to live with your uncle and aunt; you would have stayed with me. Now answer me, where did this idiocy come from, Potter?”

“I don't know,” sighed the younger man. He shook his head to gather his thoughts back in an orderly fashion. Snape let go of him. “I just hate not knowing. Being in the dark. This doesn’t make any sense, Snape, and I hate that I don't know what’s going on.”

“Like seeing only a few pieces of a puzzle. It’s not just that you do not have all the pieces or cannot fit those you have together, but you cannot even see the picture you need to create. Frustrating, I know.”

“It feels like back then. It feels like once again, I’m part of this... bigger picture. And this scares me, Snape, because the last time we both had to die to get all the pieces to fit together.”

“You won't die, Potter.” Snape said determined.

Bitter laugh broke out from Harry’s throat. “Yeah, and what about you?” Harry queried looking into the obsidian eyes. “Can you promise me that you won't do anything stupid to save me? Can you promise me this won't end like last time?”

“We both survived last time.” The older man remarked quietly.

“We both died last time.” Harry corrected. “I doubt we would have another chance to choose between staying and moving on.”

“Potter, you cannot know how this will end. Don't panic about something you’re not even sure about yet.”

“I’m sure something is going on, I just don't know what. Don't you see the signs?”

“What signs, Potter? All I see is that there’s something wrong with your wards. That is all.”

“You're lying again. This is my bloody job, Snape. To spot things that are weird, that do not fit. You moving unnoticed across my wards does not fit. You knowing about the cinnamon does not fit. Your mark almost completely fading does not fit.”

“What cinnamon, what are you talking about?”

“The cinnamon in the coffee. There is no way you could have known about this. Small things like this, don't you see it, Snape, that’s what makes the difference.”

“I am glad you finally realized the importance of the details.” Snape commented sarcastically. “Care to elaborate on them now?”

“No one knows I put cinnamon in my coffee when I’m upset. No one; not one single person. That’s a fact. You seem like you do.” Harry stated, with a questioning gaze. He wanted explanation but he knew no one could give it to them.

“I was not even looking at what I was doing back then, Potter, I was indescribably frustrated at the moment.”

“Even worse,” Harry laughed. “You instinctively put the cinnamon in the coffee, Snape.”

“And why would I have instincts about your coffee drinking habits?”

“I think we’re finally asking the right questions.” Harry sighed, looking at his clock. “Oh Merlin, it’s almost nine. I have to go.” He took the Healing Potions of the Mythical North from the middle of the table where they had left it yesterday after lunch. It seemed like the morning Snape appeared on his doorstep had happened months ago. “Don't forget this.”

They walked to the door quietly, both of them deep in their thoughts about the previous conversation. Snape opened the front door and after a moment of hesitation walked through it. The endless, questioning black eyes met Harry’s gaze, who just shook his head.

“Still nothing.” Harry laughed without the slightest happiness in his voice. “Not even a tiny twitch.”

The Potions Master nodded and turned around and stepped on the upper stair.

“Promise me.” Harry called after him.

“What?” Snape stopped, but he didn't look at Harry.

“That you won't do anything stupid to protect me again.”

“You seem to forget who the reckless Gryffindor is here, Potter.” Snape answer with his back still on Harry.

“You died in my arms, Snape, I’m not likely to ever forget that.” Harry murmured but knew Snape heard him, because the older man’s shoulders tensed suddenly. “Promise me you won't do anything stupid like that again.”

“I promise.” Snape said, staring firmly at the small park next to Grimmauld Place.

“Why do you think you can lie to me?” Harry asked somewhat hurt. His voice remained calm but firm as he went on. “Don't you fucking lie to me again. Not you.”

“Who do you think you are, to make a demand like that, Potter?” Snape queried in a low tone, but finally looked at Harry.

“Your equal, Snape.” Harry answered simply. He was tired and confused and he hated feeling like this.

Obsidian eyes were buried into his. Snape’s intense gaze burned his mind, like the ring on his chest burned his skin. Harry held the intent look. “I promise.” Snape said finally.

“Don't forget, two o’clock.” Harry nodded, letting a small smile appear on his lips finally.

“What are you going to do against the threat?”

“It should be okay,” Harry shrugged.” The writer of that letter paints a very vivid picture, but there’s no need to panic, right? My wards are still up.” A green wall of magic flared up between them for a second, as if to indicate its presence. “See you then.”

“Maybe.”

 

o.O.o

 

“Stop looking around, Harry! You’re making me nervous now.” Hermione cried, slapping his arm. “He will show up.”

“It’s already past six, he’s not coming.” Harry groaned disappointed. “That bastard. He promised. To Teddy I mean.” He added quickly.

“Of course we’re only waiting for him because Teddy wants to see him, right?” Hermione smiled evilly.

“Well, of course.” Harry affirmed a bit too quickly. “Let’s sit down. I can't take this anymore.”

They walked to the main round table and sat down, Harry on one side, Ron, and Hermione on the other. Harry took a moment and looked at his newlywed friends. Hermione was absolutely stunning in her white dress, while Ron was wearing beige wizard robes with beautiful golden and maroon sequins and pearls around the edges. Harry couldn't decide if it was the lightning in the tent but the two seemed almost radiant as they looked at each other. Hermione cupped Ron’s chin and pulled him closer. The young man grinned then kissed her tenderly.

She leaned away, eyes still closed and Ron pressed one more soft kiss on her lips. Hermione smiled at her husband then looked back at Harry and blushed upon noticing his gaze.

“You two are beautiful.” Harry smiled at them. “Absolutely amazing. I’m just so happy for you.”

“Thanks mate.” Ron grinned. “Can you believe my luck, though? She’s clever, she’s pretty, she can cook and she’s also my best friend.” Ron took Hermione’s left hand in his; their matching wedding rings glinted. “I just love her so much.”

Hermione laughed but leaned closer to Ron and whispered something in his ears that made the redhead blush madly.

Hermione...” Ron murmured. “Don't do this to me, we still have to be here for hours!”

“You know, little brother...”

“We still don't understand...”

“Why a smart witch...”

“Would marry you of all people...” The twins arrived, clapping their brother on the shoulder, before sitting down as well. They were slightly sweaty from dancing and grasped quickly onto a bottle of beer. They grinned as they said, “Cheers!” and clinked their bottles to Harry’s glass of Firewhiskey.

“Well you know how they say love makes you do crazy things.” Harry noted and was rewarded with a kick under the table, whether from Hermione or from Ron remained unknown.

“Speaking of which...” Hermione spoke suddenly, looking at something behind Harry. “He couldn't leave the swishing cloak, could he?” She smiled.

Harry looked behind him but still heard as Ron commented giggling, “Holy smoking gargoyle shit, not for nothing Harry, but even I would give him a try if I swung that way.”

He turned to his best friend so fast, his neck cracked. “Shut it, Ron. You just got married. Behave yourself.” He pushed himself up from the chair before he added. “And besides, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Harry gave Hermione one last desperate glance, fixed his tie and turned around to welcome Snape.

The older man eyed Harry as they walked towards each other and Harry couldn't help but do the same. Snape looked exquisite as the dark blue, silk-like cloak billowed behind him like liquid darkness. It covered an elegant three-piece muggle suit that consisted of a white shirt, a black waistcoat, which was embroidered with even darker motives and an also black coat with two silver buttons. Snape wasn’t wearing a tie, but a royal blue cravat was tied under the collar of the shirt around his neck, and Harry wondered if it was to hide the scars on the white skin. His black pants fitted perfectly around the longs legs, and Harry couldn't help but want to see Snape from behind and without the cloak to observe how it fit on the firm backside. Harry was torn between watching adoringly the outfit and wanting to rip it off from the man. 

“Hello Snape.” He pressed out the moment they were close enough.

“Good Evening, Potter.”

“I’m glad you could make it. Teddy will be delighted.” Harry smiled. Teddy wouldn’t be the only one feeling happy at the man’s arrival. “He’s around somewhere dancing, probably with ‘Enne.”

“’Enne?” Snape looked back at him, with a raised eyebrow.

“Fabienne. She’s a Weasley too. Bill and Fleur’s daughter.” Harry informed him, slightly surprised that the man even cared. “Please join us, the table’s right this way.”

Harry motioned towards their main table and they set off. They walked silently next to each other a couple of steps, but then Snape seemed to freeze. Harry searched the room for what startled the man and spotted Head Auror Gawain Robards looking straight at them.

“Potter that man over there... Is he not the one you stunned in my ward five years ago?” Snape asked slowly.

Harry laughed. “Yes, that’s the one. He’s my boss now.” Snape gave him an incredulous look. “I know, believe me. He’s a sadistic fucker. The only reason I’m still an Auror is that our team has the best rates in CIC and that were he to fire me, not just the media but the rest of the Aurors would be very upset too.”

“And why is that? What is CIC?” Snape asked as they arrived to the table. Ron stood up to welcome his ex-professor and answer the question while at it.

“CIC stands for Captured and Imprisoned Criminals. In many cases, the Wizengamot can’t send the bastards to Azkaban because of lack of evidence or other crap. In other words, everyone knows they did it but they get out for some reason.” Ron held out a hand, which was immediately accepted by Snape.

“Mr. Weasley, congratulations on your wedding.” The Potions Master nodded.

“Thank you, Sir.” Ron grinned. “And as for why the other teams would be upset... Well, Harry here is the best curse-breaker in the whole freaking department. And he’s brilliant with potions too. The Aurors would have lost many people if Harry hadn’t been there. You know, your team is your family out there, Sir. You wouldn’t want to lose your family in action and the Aurors realize that having Harry among them is vital to that.” The redhead looked at Harry apologetically now. “Sorry mate, I know you hate him, but we had to invite him.”

“I know, Ron, no worries. I can deal with him.” Harry laughed.

Hermione stood up too, shyly smiling at Snape. “I’m glad you could make it, Sir. Honestly, I was surprised when Harry mentioned you might come after all.”

“You look absolutely beautiful, Mrs. Weasley.” Snape commented as he bowed his head slightly towards Hermione and Harry realized with a tiny bit of envy in his heart that Snape was treating her warmly, as if they had been friends for years. “I must apologize for my delay. St. Mungo’s need for the potion I contacted Mister Potter about became very urging during the forenoon. I had to produce it as soon as possible, hence my unpunctuality.”

“It’s alright, Sir.” The bride smiled, “As I said, I’m just happy you could come. And please Sir, call me Hermione; Mrs. Weasley sounds as if you were talking to Molly.” She added bashfully.

Snape smiled at her, which made her blush lightly. “Thank you for your invitation, Hermione, and congratulation to your wedding. Surprising as it may seem, you do not appear to be under Amortentia or any other love potions, so I assume you do love Mr. Weasley.” He held out his palm and Hermione slid his fingers in it. Snape took them to his lips and placed a soft kiss on the back of her hand. Harry heard his own surprised gasp and Ron’s jealous growl simultaneously. “My offer still stands; let me know if I can help you.”

Hermione seemed to have blushed a deeper red as Snape let go of her hand. “I do love him, yes. And I think I won't be needing your help after all.” She smiled at him enigmatically.

“Is he flirting with my wife?” Ron asked suddenly, looking at Harry who watched the scene wide eyed. “Are you flirting with my wife?” He queried again, this time from Snape, who raised an eyebrow in response.

“Don't be daft, Ron. Professor Snape is not flirting with me.” She laughed.

“Hermione, I am not your professor anymore and I have been sending you flowers for five years now, I believe it is high time you start calling me Severus.”

“I don't bloody believe it,” Ron cried and looked at his brothers, who were still sitting at the table. “Did you see that? The git is fucking hitting on my wife!” He said outraged but there was something comical in it, as if even he didn't believe a word he had just said.

Harry laughed, feeling awkward, as suddenly he just remembered Snape’s sentence from the previous night. ‘I could never even get hard enough to fuck a woman...’ What was going on between Hermione and Snape? And why was she suddenly be allowed to call him Severus? And more importantly, why wasn’t Harry?

Snape shook hands with the twins then they sat down and Harry was pleased to notice that even though there were several empty seats around the table, Snape chose the one right next to Harry. Ron eyed Snape suspiciously, as if the man could jump up any time and steal his wife but nothing of sort happened. Though Snape’s attention was focused on the bride, they were only discussing Hermione’s work on the new legislation about half-breeds. Snape seemed to find it remarkable and complimented her on it several times. Harry meanwhile was chatting with the others, having some doubts about these magically refilling goblets they ordered for the wedding being a good idea.

Who knew how many glasses of Firewhiskey later, his leg brushed against Snape’s idly. The man, who by that time had consumed ample amounts of whiskey himself, did not seem to notice it. Harry shifted slightly and this time their legs bumped against each other more firmly. Snape looked at him questioningly and Harry leaned closer so that no one would hear them.

“What’s going on between you and Hermione?” He asked, feeling much bolder now that he had drunk a bottle of whiskey, or at least it felt like that was the case.

“Nothing at all.” Snape answered, his lips twitching.

“Then how come she’s calling you Severus now?” Snape’s eyes closed for a second and he took a deep breath.

“As I said earlier, I have been sending her flowers for years.”

“Are you having an affair with her?” Harry asked suddenly, knowing that even if that were the case, which was impossible, Snape would deny it.

“Mister Potter, you seem to be having serious doubts about my sexuality.” Snape raised an eyebrow, smirking lightly. “How should I prove to you that I am indeed homosexual?”

Harry had several ideas about that, all of them ending with Snape having his cock up in Harry’s ass. He cleared his throat, trying to stay composed. “I’m sorry. You could never get hard enough to fuck a woman, was it?” Harry quoted back.

“Indeed.” Snape smirked. “I am surprised you are upset that I have been pleasant with your friends.”

Harry wasn’t upset Snape was nice with the others, he was upset the others were granted privileges he wasn’t.

“Can I call you Severus too?” He asked quietly and Snape closed his eyes again. When Harry next saw the obsidian orbs, they seemed darker.

Absolutely not, Mister Potter,” was the answer.

“Why?”

“Why? I do not remember ever receiving a single flower from you.” Snape reasoned and Harry could note the hint of mirth in his tone.

“But you did sleep in my bed. Right next to me.” Harry argued.

“And isn’t that true.” Snape laughed lightly. “I have slept in the same bed with many people, Mister Potter. That is an act, which does not grant you any right to call me by my given name. I am afraid that privilege requires a more strenuous activity executed between the sheets.”

Harry knew he was staring at the man with his mouth hanging open.

“However do not worry, Mister Potter.” Snape’s eyes seemed to be stuck on Harry’s lips for a second, but then he looked away. “There are other means for you to acquire that right. Voldemort called me Severus and I assure you, I neither had sex with him nor did we send flowers to each other.”

Harry burst out laughing at the mental image of Voldemort picking flowers for Snape on a great field. Snape looked back at him and smiled, then emptied his glass.

“You two seem cosy over there.” Fred spoke with a lopsided grin.

“Care to tell what’s so funny?” George added.

Harry just shook his head and giggled some more. The conversion went on but Harry listened only with one ear. He was still smiling though, as their legs were still touching under the table.

“I can't wait to open the wedding gifts.” Ron said cheerfully. “We’re going to get a lot of Muggle stuff because of Hermione’s relatives and I can't wait to try them out.”

“Oh right, I almost forgot.” Snape spoke suddenly. He drew his black wand and tapped it to his outstretched palm. As he slowly pulled the wand away from his hand, it seemed to create a circle of waving magic about an inch above his skin.

The single white rose that emerged from the magical ring as his wand rose higher and higher looked very lush and animate, it seemed as if it were vibrating with life itself. Harry stared at the flower mesmerized, taking in the bright white petals and the dark green leaves that shined with energy.

Snape held the rose towards Hermione, who gazed at it amazed. “You finally figured it out then.” She smiled at the dark man.

“A white rose? Really?” Snape asked back surprised but pleased. “That’s not why I chose this, however. While red roses represent more like passion and love, a white rose shows you true love. They have many magical qualities and are often used to represent bonded couples. This one here is magical too; I charmed it.” Snape looked at Ron for a second then his gaze snapped back at the bride, who meanwhile took the rose carefully in her hand. “As long as you two love each other, it will keep blooming and never fade away.”

The dead silence around the table was deafening. Everyone stared wide-eyed at Snape, who seemed suddenly worried.

“If you do not like it...” He started but Hermione interrupted him right away.

“No! That’s not it!” She pulled the rose closer to her and Ron, as if afraid Snape might take it back. “It’s just...” She faltered and looked at her husband for help.

“Well we have never...” Ron shook his head, he couldn't finish the sentence either.

“We’ve never realized...” Fred chimed in, staring at the white rose too, and uncharacteristically nervous enough not to say whatever was on his mind.

“What these coward chickens are trying to say is,” George spoke loudly, “that we’ve never realized what a fucking romantic you are.”

Laughter broke out around the table and even Snape smiled at that. Hermione tried to give George a slap on the head, but he evaded it.

“Honestly Hermione, don't tell me you didn’t expect a deadly potion that says ‘If you need a way out’ or something instead of the enchanted white rose of True Love. This isn’t a gift you would expect from Professor Snape!” George argued.

“He’s right, ‘Mione.” Ron nodded. “I thought it was going to be something slimy and weird.” Ron added looking apologetically at Snape.

Hermione did slap his husband on the back of his head, who only giggled and kissed her. “I love it, Severus, it’s absolutely beautiful.” She said then beaming at Snape.

“Now that the reputation I have built for sixteen years has been utterly demolished,” Snape spoke reluctantly, “I feel a little addition would not do any more harm. The rose does not have the usual scent.”

Ron sniffed it and grinned at Hermione.

“Yes, Mr. Weasley is right. The rose, much like love potions, smells differently to everyone, depending whom their love is.”

Harry wondered for a second if it would smell like Snape for him. “Have you sniffed it?” He asked the older man, while the others were busy with admiring the flower.

Snape looked at him for a second, a dark glint in his eyes. “I would not dare.”

“Why?” Harry asked quietly, feeling drawn towards those black eyes. The alcohol in his system made him feel suddenly dizzy.

“What if I don't even recognize the scent? Or even worse, what if I do?” Snape asked back and Harry found himself facing the same question he asked himself a second ago.

He stood up and held a hand towards the older man, not noticing that the table quieted around them. “Dance with me?” He asked with hammering heart and his voice sounded like begging to his ear.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus realized he had been playing a hazardous game all night, but this was something he would not have expected even in his deepest, darkest dream. He gazed at the long fingers that stretched towards him invitingly for some time that felt like hours, however couldn't have been more than mere seconds.

When he finally slipped his fingers in the other man’s hand, Potter let out a heavy sigh and smiled, pulling him up then towards the dance floor outside the tent.

“That’s Dean Thomas’ band.” Potter said conversationally. They walked to a spot that was several feet from the other dancers and darker too, as the candles floated over the crowd only. Severus found himself overly aware of Potter’s soft touch on the tip of his fingers as the younger man guided him on the grass; he wanted to blame the whiskey he irresponsibly consumed, but knew somewhere deep that were he completely sober, his awareness wouldn’t change. “Do you remember him?” Potter asked then, stopping and turning towards Severus.

“Or course.” Severus answered, aiming for the nonchalant tone as well. “Your year, also Gryffindor. Average in Potions.”

Potter stepped closer and Severus’ heartbeat became noticeable faster. What was happening? And wasn’t he doing something to prevent it?

“Harry!” Lupin shouted walking towards them with Teddy in his arms. The boy seemed exhausted and almost asleep. “Glad we could catch you.” He seemed to notice their entwined fingers but smiled. “I’m sorry for interrupting. We’re about to head out. Sirius is still tired and well... Teddy’s not in any better shape.” He laughed, nudging the little boy, who hearing his own name, looked up sleepily from his father’s shoulder.

“Uncle Hally! Uncle Seeus!” He yawned.

“Hello pup.” Harry grinned at him and pressed a kiss on his forehead. “Did you have fun?”

“Aham!” The boy smiled then stretched out a hand towards Severus, expecting a kiss from him too. The man looked at Lupin who didn't seem to be against the idea and angled the boy so it would be easier for Severus to kiss his forehead.

“Good night, Thaddeus.” He smiled warmly at the little man. “How is his fever?” He asked from Lupin then.

“Oh he’s feeling perfect, thank you.” Lupin nodded then reached into his pocket. He took out a piece of paper and gave it to Severus. “If you need anything.” He said, smiling. “Alright, see you both later.”

“Tell Sirius to get better soon, I still have to kick his ass in our next Quidditch game.” Harry laughed as he waved goodbye. Severus uttered a quiet goodbye too, before he opened the small note. It was the address of the Wolfden, Teddy’s home. It felt unexplainably nice that Lupin trusted him enough to reveal this information.

He turned back towards the younger man and he wasn’t surprised to see the green eyes looking intently at him, however the intense gaze sent an unexpected shiver down his back.

“Shall we then?” Potter asked breathless.

“I must confess Mister Potter, I do not usually dance.” Severus said apologetically slipping the note into his pocket then took Potter’s right hand more firmly in his. He stepped closer, still maintaining a proper distance and put his right palm on the Gryffindor’s hip, while Potter’s other hand rested on his shoulder.

“If you dance half as good as you do other things, we won't have a problem.” The man smiled up at him and Severus was surprised to notice how tall he suddenly seemed.

They swayed lightly in the darkness; Severus took the lead instinctively and Potter went with it without any comment. Gradually, their moves became more synchronized, and after just a few minutes, it felt they had been partners for a lifetime. Severus’ attempts to look at anything other than the man he was dancing with failed miserably. He regarded the other dancers, then the band for mere seconds, the bright stars held his gaze for almost a half-minute but then it was unavoidably on Potter again. Their eyes stayed connected for a minute or two, green eyes bore into him, into the depth of his soul until it was just too much and one of them finally looked away. And the circle started again: dancers, the band, the stars, and finally each other.

The singer’s voice was deep and rich, soft like cream, but he didn't hear it. It was Potter’s breathing that vibrated in his ears. He wasn’t listening to the songs anymore, the rhythm of their dance more like intuition than strict moves to a certain beat. There had to be a song, Severus realized, because Potter’s steps were too much in harmony with his.

Potter’s hip slipped from under his touch as he pushed the other man out in a spin, trying to get a bit more distance between them so that he could breathe again, or at least think; that would be enough really. But Potter, always the one who turned Severus’ careful plans into utter chaos, returned from the turn one step closer.

“I thought you didn't dance.” Potter gasped as Severus’ hand slid from his hip to his waist.

“No, not with anyone.” Severus answered finally realizing he indeed had too much drink. They were close, close enough that he could see himself reflected in Potter’s glasses. There was still at least half a foot between them, yet he could feel the warmness that radiated from the other man.

“This is nice.” Potter said in a low voice. His hand on Severus’ shoulder moved, his fingertips brushed the older man’s neck. “I like this.”

“I myself find it less appalled with every passing second.” Severus confessed too, almost smiling. Potter’s fingers reached his hairline now, and were buried into his long raven hair. The sensation wasn’t supposed to be maddening, yet the softly caressing fingers burned his senses.

The younger man’s radiant smile showed again. “You know...” He started hesitantly and Severus feared what he would be asking. “We’re dancing right? And that’s something you don't do with everyone, right? You really should let me call you Severus.”

There it was again, his name; something he had heard a million times, but not like this, not from Potter. His groin twitched every time at the sound of Harry Bloody Potter uttering his given name. It was something that had never caused any awareness in him previously, only when that one infuriating person spoke it.

He leaned to Potter’s ear and let his lower lip brush against the shell. “Absolutely not, Mister Potter.” It was more than enough that the other man’s very presence made him hard recently, he didn't need verbal stimulation too.

Potter, the bloody idiot, laughed; another sound that made Severus even more aroused, how it was possible at all, he did not dare contemplate on it. The Gryffindor’s palm was on his nape now and Potter pressed their bodies closer until their chests touched. Severus could swear he felt the resonance of another ferociously drumming heartbeat vibrating against his ribcage.

The rhythm of the music became faster but in the same time much quieter. They were dancing away from the crowd and the noise into the darkness and isolation. Just the two of them, moving under the stars in seaming serenity, while in reality every touch caused a storm of emotions inside them.

When Severus finally tore his gaze from the green eyes, he noticed that the floating candles were only fireflies now, and the music they were dancing to was nothing more than the crickets in the grass. When did this happen? Who was leading whom here? Was it a good idea to let this happen? There was enough alcohol raging through his bloodstream at that moment that he discarded the questions, rather than to deal with them any time soon.

Instead, he acted out of instinct. His hand drifted slightly on Potter’s waist, his fingers caressing the younger man softly, yet firmly enough so that there would be no misunderstanding. Their heads were next to each other, and as he couldn't look at the other man, Severus simply closed his eyes and conjured him up in his mind. He pictured his radiant smile, his bright green eyes, his sinful lips.

“Potter, this is probably not the right course of action.” He whispered; he was at Potter’s ear already, voicing the last of his doubts seemed necessary before the world around them would go mad.

“Yeah... probably...” Potter moaned back right into his ear. He could feel the young man’s lips as they formed the next words. “Good thing I’m a brash and imprudent Gryffindor then.”

Then it happened and all changed. Potter pressed his legs between his and if noticing Severus’ state of arousal eluded him so far, he realized it now. The young man’s appreciation was voiced in a form of a lustful moan, something Severus echoed upon noticing the hard shaft that pressed against his own thigh. As they danced, their bodies shifted against each other, Potter was pressing closer and closer, they were moving chest to chest, hips to hips, groin to groin. Hand tore at his hair, he gasped in pleasure, and he pulled the young man as close as possible.

Severus almost fell over when the impossible brat took his earlobe between his lips, wet tongue sliding on the soft flesh. “Let’s get out of here...” Potter breathed against the shell of his ear. “Come home with me...”

He swung Potter around again, but this time he didn't let him do a full turn. The second Potter’s back was on him, he gripped onto the younger’s man hip with unyielding force and pulled him wildly to his front. Their hands, still entwined, rested around Potter’s stomach, while they swayed with restrained passion. Severus only knew about one other activity that sent such fierce emotions down his body.

“I am warning you Potter, be sure you know what you are asking for.” Severus whispered darkly.

“Oh, I am.” Potter groaned as he pressed his firm arse against the older man’s groin. Severus made Potter stay in that position as he kept on moving slowly against the other, knowing exactly how tormenting his actions were. Potter slithered one hand into Severus’ hair again, his back arching back onto Severus, while he tilted his head to the side. Severus took the offering with enthusiasm. He licked over the exposed skin and then bit down on it softly, drawing another moan out of the younger man. The bloody Gryffindor tasted divine.

Potter’s not so gentle tug in his hair made his eyes shoot open, which in the end saved their lives. The bright green light that soared through the night air was noiseless like Death himself.

Neither the alcohol in his body, nor his aroused state mattered at that moment, as his instincts kicked in and he shoved Potter out of the way from the deadly spell, that eluded him in mere inches. He could smell the burning, stingy smell of the Killing Curse.

He stepped behind the tree Potter was standing too, right after he sent a Stunning Spell towards the attacker.

“Really?” Potter screamed towards the mysterious person far away from them. “Did you really have to do that right now?”

“And of course,” Severus laughed, “that is your biggest problem at the moment.” They both shot a few spells towards Potter’s assassin and ran behind another tree, thick enough to provide cover for both of them. “Why is it that there are people constantly trying to kill you, Potter?”

“Guess it must be my charm.” Potter grinned, before summoning his Patronus. “Ron! We need help! Get the others!”

Weasley’s Jack Russell showed up immediately next to them, both Patronuses beaming like a beacon. They had to move soon.

 “Harry, where are you?”

“Under bloody attack in your fucking backyard, Sir.” Potter reported in official tone. “Two assailants showed up so far, at least one of them using Unforgivables. There’s a civilian with me, Sir.”

It was almost fascinating to watch Potter switch to Auror mode in less than a second, calling his best friend ‘sir’.  But Severus still resented the status he was just given. “Civilian, Potter? Me?”

“Who’s with you, Harry? The others are on the way,” barked the dog.

“Snape’s here too.” They had to duck and run to another tree. “There’s five of them now.”

There was silence in the other side for a second, then Weasley spoke hesitantly again, “Harry, what exactly were you doing with Snape out there? In the dark? Alone?”

“NOT now, Ron!!” Potter shouted and Severus felt like laughing if there wasn’t another Killing Curse after Potter. He pushed the man away again so the Curse burnt a nasty hole in the tree. “Over and out!” The Auror growled the minute they heard the arrival of the other Aurors and he vanished his Patronus. The darkness was blinding for a second but both of their eyes adapted quickly. Potter grabbed his hand and they started running away from the fight.

They pulled behind another old tree, panting heavily, listening to the noises around them.

“I believe we are going the wrong way.” Severus noted quietly, when Potter placed a hand on his black wand to stop him from firing any spell.

“No, we’re not. We have to get you out of here.” The Auror whispered back, leaning his back against the tree to catch his breath. “You’re a civilian. And this isn’t your fight.” Severus was about to growl back a spiteful answer but Potter spoke again, “You can argue as much as you want, I won't let you go back there. It’s regulations. Civilians first.”

Severus stepped closer and the Auror frowned then closed his eye firmly and draw a hand over his face. “Merlin...” Potter moaned painfully.

“Are you hurt?” Severus asked with concern.

“No, it’s just my head.”

“The scar?” Cold panic screamed up in Severus but Potter’s answer calmed him immediately.

“No, just a regular headache. I have been having them a lot, recently.”

Potter wasn’t alone with that, that was for sure. “Well, deal with it later, someone is approaching.”

They moved away quietly from the rustling steps in the grass. Potter held up three fingers, which confirmed Severus’ fear that they were outnumbered. Driven by a sudden idea, he pushed Potter towards the nearest thick tree. He covered him with his whole body and drew his long cape around them. He mouthed the Concealment Charm he casted, so that Potter could read it off his lips, which the Auror did indeed, because he nodded mutely. Severus watched and listened carefully and intensely to everything around them. The noises were getting closer, but if his Charm was strong enough the assassins would take them as a part of the tree.

It was imperative that when the assailants would arrived next to them they remained absolutely motionless and soundless. He looked at Potter and their gaze connected again. The green eyes widened and Potter gasped, his headache must have been worse than Severus imagined. The Auror’s eyes roamed his features as if he was seeing Severus the first time, as if he were waking up from a curse. Severus’ heart clenched when he realized he detected something like fear in those eyes. Fear and confusion, yes, but Potter was still hard against him; he could feel the erection pressed against him in their intimate posture. Well, he knew this time would come, when the alcohol stopped clouding Potter’s mind, he just hoped it would take a bit longer.

The Gryffindor bit his lips to prevent another painful gasp to break out from his throat. Their attackers were getting closer, just a few more steps and they could see them. Severus leaned to Potter’s ear, whose eyes were now closed tightly. “Hush, Potter, or we both die.” He whispered so quietly, he wasn’t sure he even uttered a word. But he must have because Potter suddenly moved fast like a poisonous snake. His arms went around Severus, one on his waist the other around the middle of his back and pulled him in even closer, while he sunk his teeth onto the base of Severus’ neck.

Severus was terrified, yet he almost came as he felt the Auror’s wild bite into his flesh, even though it was covered by several layers of clothing. He let out a shaking breath against Potter’s hair, trying to numb its sound.

The moment the assassins walked next to them, they both froze against each other and didn't even dare take a breath.

“They must have Apparated away, when the others attacked.” One of the assailants said quietly.

“Yeah...” The other agreed. “Jugson won't be happy.”

“Shit.” The third one groaned. “Let’s go back.” There were three loud pops, and the men were gone.

Potter pushed him away right that second, and let out an audible moan that sounded very painful.

“Holy fucking shit.” He murmured clutching his head between his hands and bent down so that his elbows touched his stomach. He must be in agonizing pain, Severus thought watching the Auror.

“That is one hell of a headache, Potter.” Severus remarked, placing a calming hand on Potter’s shoulder but he flinched away from the touch and winced in agony again.

“Tell me about it.” The Gryffindor mumbled.

“Come home with me, I can give you some potions to alleviate the pain.”

Potter simply laughed at the offer and it felt like a stab in his heart. “Yeah, I’m not going anywhere with you.” The young man twisted the knife cruelly.

The words definitely sobered Severus enough that he felt bitter again and sneered at the other man. “As you wish. Then suffer as much as you like.”

“I haven’t felt this bad since Voldemort.” Potter groaned, staggering.

“Then will you let me help?”

Potter looked at him frowning, then shook his head. “No.”

“I can help.” Severus didn't want to believe he was almost begging for Potter to accept his offer. Why did he care after such ruthless rejection?

“I know you can.” Potter grasped his head again.

“Then why? Is my help too degrading to you suddenly?” Severus spat angrily.

“What?” Potter looked up, his headache forgotten for a second. “Of course not! There are people after me, I can't stay at your place now, can I?”

“My home is undetectable, my wards can protect you.” Severus argued, stepping closer.

“Too many good men have died or gooten injured while helping me. Including you. I told you, I don't want the past to repeat itself. I don't want you getting hurt because of me again.”

They were silent for a few minutes, Potter’s erratic breathing and the crickets being the only sound in the night. Severus felt irritated at the younger man’s sudden behaviour.

“You have to go home.” Potter said stiffly, almost like an order.

“And leave you here in this state? Bloody unlikely. You almost bit a piece out of me just now!” Severus snorted.

“Why is it so fucking hard to understand that I don't want you here?” Potter barked, looking up annoyed at the stars. “Just get the fuck back to safety! Please.”

“Potter,” Severus cried. “What on earth is wrong with you? Have you forgotten who I am? I am not a bloody damsel in distress, who needs rescuing!”

“Sir, I’m warning you,” Potter snarled in his official tone again, “that was a direct order from an Auror. Do as I say or I make you.”

The evil smirk on Severus’ lips showed how he felt about that threat. “Do try, Auror Potter.”

Potter didn't move but Severus had enough. He grabbed Potter and smashed him against the tree. He raised Potter’s hand over his head and held them firmly there. “Why?” He asked, observing the green eyes, which suddenly seemed tired.

“Don't you understand?” Potter queried instead of answering, dropping his head back.

“Explain.” Severus demanded.

“They know where I live. They know where I am.”

“And...?” Severus drawled.

“And I’m not here alone now, am I?”

“The exact reason, why I should stay beside you.”

“No, the exact reason, why you have to get away from me as soon as possible.”

“But you-“ Severus started but the Auror interrupted him right away.

“I will find somewhere safe, but please go now. You have to go away.”

Severus tightened his grip on the younger man’s wrists to make a point and uttered a soft, “Potter-“, but the impossible Gryffindor twirled his arms, wriggled some and grasped Severus. Everything happened so fast and he did not understand how did he end up against the tree, with his right arm twisted behind him, Potter’s strong grip making sure he wouldn’t move. Severus tensed against the restrain and realized one wrong move and Potter would dislocate his right shoulder. He arched himself towards Potter, who was watching him intently, his eyes nailed to Severus’ lips.

“Don't Potter me, Snape, I’m not your student anymore, you don't have to protect me. I’m a trained Auror and I can take care of myself.” He looked into the Slytherin’s eyes as he went on speaking. “But I told you, I can't have you getting in the crossfire. I need you out of here and in safety before any harm comes to you.”

Severus smirked again and pressed his wand into Potter’s throat. He knew he had managed to surprise the other man, just by looking into the green eyes. A part of him wanted an actual wand-fight with Potter, he imagined it would almost be as satisfying as foreplay if not sex itself.

“Your safety is priority to the whole Wizarding World, Potter. I have had my fare share in the war do not forget that. I know how to protect myself. And anyone else for that matter.” The smirk froze off from Severus’ face as Potter pressed his own wand deeper against his abdomen right next his hipbone.

“Believe me, Snape, I will never forget what you’ve done for me during the war and trust me I know how brilliant you are, that’s not even the question here. Maybe I’m important to the community and they want me safe, I don't care. My priority right now is only you.” Potter sighed heavily and releasing his arm, stepped away from Severus. “Quick, please, go now. We will talk later. I need you to go now.”

Severus felt weird as he stepped away from the younger man. He heard Mr. Weasley’s cries for his friend in the background.

“Snape...” Potter started apologetically, surely noticing how the atmosphere changed between them.

Severus looked back at him over his shoulder. “I wish you the best, Auror Potter.” He said, before he Apparated back to the cottage.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus had been roaming the kitchen aimlessly for an hour now. There was still no news from the bloody idiot. Not that he expected the young man to show up just to calm his old professor, but he could at least send a letter, Severus argued with himself. Fawkes chirped on his shoulder, he hadn’t moved from there since Severus arrived home. He looked out the window; the rain was still falling heavily, like the questions in his heart.

Why did Potter refuse his help? Did he think Severus wouldn’t be able to protect him? Hadn’t Severus proven that many times over the years? He was a bloody spy for sixteen years, for Merlin’s sake! Why was Potter so concerned about his safety? And why the bloody hell couldn't he forget the young man’s lean body against him?

To calm himself, he started preparing tea. He measured the leaves into his cup and was about to pour the hot water on them, when he noticed some movement in the corner of his eyes. He looked out of the kitchen window again, and lightning struck down at that second, bringing brightness to the garden.

Potter stood out there, looking lost, and completely drenched. He took a hesitant step towards the house then stopped, turned around and rushed towards the small white gate. Then he stopped again, and looked back at the cottage over his shoulder, deep in thoughts. He massaged his temple, then carded his hand through his wet hair.

Severus went to the front door, not even noticing the pleasant smile on his lips. He opened it and leaned against the doorframe. Potter was in the middle of the stone covered road, his back to the house. He spun around once more with a determined motion, but seemed surprised to notice Severus in the doorway. He stopped dead, like a statue in the middle of the garden, but then took a couple of feeble steps backwards.

Severus found himself praying that the idiot would not run away.

The Gryffindor in Potter must have woken up, because the young, wet man took a deep breath and walked up to the porch.

“Well?” Severus asked, stepping away from the door and motioning Potter inside.

“I told you I would find somewhere safe.” Potter shrugged, walking into his home, dripping rainwater all over his carpet, which was something Severus felt utterly acceptable at that moment. He pointed towards the kitchen then went upstairs to get a towel for the man.

As he walked back into the room, he found Potter with his arms drawn firmly around himself, hugging his own body, staring out into the rain. His eyes seemed immensely sad, and he flinched from time to time.

“What happened?” Severus inquired quietly, putting the warmed towel on Potter’s slightly shaking shoulder.

The young man kept staring outside as he answered in a morose tone. “They were ripping my wards off one by one. I could feel them breaking them. I still can, it’s like an echo. The wards, my magic, were fighting back, but I wasn’t inside so it broke eventually. I feel... desecrated. Dirty.” Their eyes connected in the window’s reflecting surface. “Twelve Grimmauld Place is gone.”

Severus looked at Potter, not the reflection but the real one, who finally turned around and sighed. “I’m officially homeless.” He said with a crooked smile, seemingly in a bit better mood, as he started drying his hair with the white towel.

Severus shook his head. “You are always welcomed here.” He smiled teasingly at the young man when he added, “I always wanted a dog. I guess a wolf is not much of a difference.”

“Oh shut it!” Potter laughed, throwing the towel at him, but Severus caught it just in time.

“Tea?” He asked, motioning towards his cup and the box of tea leaves next to it.

“If you could add a bit of whiskey to it that would be perfect.” Potter nodded appreciatively.

Severus took out a bottle of Ogden’s Old Firewhiskey from the cabinet. “And what if we leave out the tea?”

Chapter Text

Their conversation was civil, interesting but after their sensual dance seemed very distant. Harry’s mind was continuously recalling the sensation of Snape’s body sliding against him. He wanted to get back the mood they had while dancing but it seemed impossible. It was as if with the music, their feelings had vanished as well. Snape looked his usual unapproachable self, and Harry wasn’t sure how to act around him anymore. Why was it so easy at the wedding? Was it the darkness? The music? The closeness?

Harry drank the glasses of whisky one after the other, hoping that the alcohol that was buzzing in his mind would, if not bring back the mood, then  maybe alleviate the tense atmosphere in the room, or make it a bit more bearable at least.

He tried to recall the pictures that had caused him the terrible headache while being pressed against the tree, but the harder he was clutching after them, the faster they slipped away. The only thing he knew for certain was, that that wasn’t the first time Snape had held him against something. But when and where else? And why couldn’t he remember? He could recall dark eyes and a smooth voice but maybe he was already mixing it with the present. And there was something else he could remember if he concentrated hard enough, a scent, something fresh and clean like the ocean, but it seemed like it was from a dream not from reality. But how could that man even be Snape?

Harry sipped into his fourth glass of Firewhiskey. The brown liquid was still burning his tongue and throat, but it was welcomed. Snape was sitting in front of him on the other couch, while a nice fire was cracking in the hearth.

He pressed down his hand and slid it over his thigh trying to calm himself. Snape was still way too sober, which made the situation even more awkward.

“So where did Fawkes disappear to?” Harry asked after a few minutes he deemed too quiet.

“He comes and goes freely. I have no idea.” Snape answered, putting down his glass next to him on the couch and crossing his leg on his knee. The suit jacket and the cape had vanished from him but he was still wearing his black vest and crisp white shirt with the tight dark pants, which made him look even more exquisite than before. He had a casual elegance Harry admired and wholeheartedly approved. He was leaning with one arm on the sofa, his other hand rested on his lap. His long raven black hair fell on his shoulders and seemed to be made out of silk in the ambient light.

“Why is he still here?”

“I have been asking the same question day after day. He is unfortunately still reluctant to answer however.”

Harry laughed and the older man smiled as well. “Why did you take him in at all? You didn't seem very fond of him during your trial.”

“For one, I did not take him in, he came with the house would be my guess. And of course I hated the bloody beast. He was a constant reminder of Albus and the crime I committed. Every time I looked at him, I saw my friend. I am not cold-hearted enough for that to leave me unaffected.”

“You still haven’t forgiven yourself, have you?”

“No. And I can tell you I never will.” Snape said darkly. “However I have accepted it. Without that I could never live with Fawkes under the same roof.”

“Snape-“ Harry started but the man raised his hand, signing wordlessly that he would not speak more of the topic.

“Why don’t you tell me more about your work?” His former professor suggested. “I have seen some of your co-workers in action; they seem compatible. Even if your superior does not.” The other man said leaning back.

“It’s not as good as it seems.” Harry answered evasively.

“Why did you become an Auror then?”

“It was my dream.” Harry sighed bitterly not sounding convinced at all even to himself.

“You do not seem happy about fulfilling your dream.” Snape laughed.

“I was fourteen, reckless and impulsive, as you know. Fake Moody told me, I would be a good Auror and, given my past and possible future with Voldemort, I couldn't imagine anything else just hunting dark wizards as a living. But I am fed up with it, Snape.” Harry explained. This was the first time he had ever talked about this. Ron suspected something about his feelings recently but with the wedding, they had better and more important things to talk about. “Honestly, it’s depressing work and I don't think I can do it anymore. The bureaucracy is terrible...” Harry murmured before he took one more sip of his whiskey.

Snape raised his eyebrow at Harry, asking him to go on. “You know better than anyone else that I can't bear being bound by idiotic rules. Did you know, that if the situation requires it, we could use The Unforgivables? They give us authority to manipulate, kill and torture. But the system is corrupt and the lines are blurred. Especially with that asshole in the Head chair.”

“Heroism is in your nature Potter, you can't just shrug that off.” Snape remarked gently.

“This isn’t heroism Snape, this is following faceless orders. I’ve had enough of that thank you, and it cost me more than my life.” Harry emptied his glass and placed it on the small table next to the sofa.

“What do you want to do then?”

“I don't know... something calm maybe. Healing would be nice. I could help people but without risking my life every damn time. Not to mention they wouldn’t tell me to torture someone just to get some information.”

“You do realize Healing would include watching people die during some unfortunate occasions, right? You would break under that, Potter. Losing a patient is not that easy, believe me.”

“There wasn’t anything you could have done for Dumbledore, you know that right? The Healers in St. Mungo’s confirmed that you could have done absolutely nothing to save him. Even the fact that you managed to brew something that helped him for one more year, and you were able to stop the curse from spreading out from his hand was already a bloody miracle.”

“It feels more like a catastrophic failure.” Snape confessed quietly, clearing his throat. His long fingers reached for his cravat and he untied it. When the thin fabric slipped from around his throat, he took a deep breath, as if it had been suffocating him.

Harry’s eyes were immediately fixed on the scar on Snape’s neck. The end of the uneven white line was divided like a snake’s forked tongue, constantly licking the soft skin.

“Found something interesting, Potter?” Snape asked and Harry snapped up his gaze, feeling caught.

“Can I see it?”

“I was under the delusion that was what you had been doing in the last minute,” came the sharp retort but Snape lifted his chin, giving a better view.

Harry stood up then kneeled next to Snape’s crossed legs. The alcohol in his system made him feel dizzy. Or maybe it was the other’s closeness again. The long fingers opened the shirt a bit more widely so Harry could see the whole scar.

“I’m surprised you don't want to hide it.” Harry all but whispered, his pointing finger hovering an inch over the skin.

“Why would I?” Snape asked, his tone filled with irritation. “I am neither proud nor pleased that I have it, however it is undoubtedly a part of me. I could not care less if it disgusts you or anyone else.”

“I’m not disgusted by it.” Harry laughed awkwardly as disgust was the last thing he felt at that moment. “I like scars; they are like chapters of my life. You have no idea, how many times I had to go over mine with Teddy, telling him their story.”

“I am afraid, my story would not entertain a two year old.”

“How about a twenty-three year old?” Harry asked infirmly. He sat back on his heels and looked up at Snape expectantly.

“You already know it, Potter.” Snape answered.

“Not all of it.” Harry said quietly. “The ones on your back... Who did that?”

The man just rolled his eyes. “Who do you think?”

“Voldemort.” Harry groaned. “Why?”

“The prophecy. Let’s say he did not appreciate that I delivered only one half of it.”

“Crucio doesn’t leave marks like that.” Harry noted.

“Oh Crucio indeed does not. A lash however does.”

“He...” Harry murmured, his fist clenching into a knot. “How many?”

“I was to receive forty lashes. Lucius intervened after the twentieth so he was rewarded the rest.”

“Damn it!” Harry cried angrily, smashing his fisted hand into the couch. Snape flinched slightly from his sudden move but didn't say anything just raised a questioning eyebrow.

“I... I.... I hate that bastard.” Harry snarled.

To his surprise, Snape laughed at that. “Don't waste such fierce emotions on him, Potter. Pity the man. That alone would have killed him.”

Harry smiled. “You’re right.”

“I am always right.” Snape smirked. “Besides, if you want to hate everyone who left scars on my body, you would be forced to learn to loath many of the people you love at the moment, your own father and godfather included.”

“What do you mean?” Harry asked confused.

Snape looked at him, considering. He took a deep breath then undid the second and third buttons on his shirt. Harry’s heart started beating in an uneven rhythm and he suddenly wished he hadn’t drunk as much as he did. Snape pointed out a long scar that went over his left shoulder. “Albus.” He said.

What? When?” Harry cried, leaning over the man to take a better look at the mark.

“I was just out of school when we came face to face the first time. He, as the Leader of the Order and me, as a loyal Death Eater. We fought; I did not even have a chance against him. His spell slashed me, and then he realized who I was: the clever boy, who was a remarkable Potionist, the best in Hogwarts. He healed me and left me in the field, where we battled. But before he Apparated away, he told me, that I had a million and more opportunities; were I in need of a way out, he would be ready to help.”

“He always saw the best in people.”

“He was a fool.” Snape shook his head.

“He was right.” Harry smiled. The black eyes snapped at him, but Snape didn't say anything. Instead his hand moved lower on his chest and opened two more buttons. A silver chain revealed itself, hanging around the slim, elegant neck, and Harry felt a sudden urge to reach for it. His hand rose involuntarily but Snape took the chain in his hand faster. He gave Harry a reproachful look before he hid the pendant, or whatever it was, in his palm.

“What is that?” Harry asked suspiciously, his own ring burning against his skin yet again.

“Not your business, for once.” Snape answered primly.

Harry took a deep breath wanting to press on the topic of the mysterious medallion but then something caught his eyes.

“Is that... a hoof mark?” Harry asked pointing out a scar over Snape’s sternum. He drew his pointing finger over the white skin and Snape suddenly griped his wrist with brutal force.

Do. Not. Touch. Me. Again.” He hissed like a snake and Harry felt his heart sink deeper and deeper. What had happened between them since the dance that now he wasn’t even allowed to touch the man? He wanted to say sorry, but Snape spoke again, letting go of his hand. “And yes, that is indeed a hoof mark. A centaur’s to be precise.”

“Did you try to get a hair from their tail for a potion?”

“Actually, I went into the Forest to warn an idiot that his godfather is not in any danger. Unfortunately, I was too late for that. Bane found me in the Forest and gently inquired about my intensions before he nudged me out of his territory.”

Harry took a shocked gasp of air and stared at his former professor. Did Snape go into the Forest all by himself to warn Harry about Sirius in his fifth year, when even Hagrid was nervous to go in there unarmed? He seemed to recall Dumbledore saying something about this, but Harry never imagined Snape got hurt because of him.

“Apology accepted.” Snape smirked. “However if there is something you should apologize for, it would be this one.” For the next scar, Snape had to undo three more buttons on his shirt and his vest as well. Harry could see the dark hair under the man’s navel and his stomach made a wild twitch. He was way too inebriated at the moment to realize the true depth of the situation. Snape trusted him enough to show him his old scars and tell the tales. He knew, were he sober, this would mean more to him than the world itself. But he was drunk so his heart was beating ferociously, his mouth was dry and his eyes just stared at the skin while he willed his mind blank, refusing to analyze anything, especially his hardening cock.

The scar was a strait white line on Snape’s side, beneath his lowest rib. “I did that?” Harry asked surprised.

“With my own spell is what infuriates me the most.” Snape sneered. “I can live with the fact that the great Harry Potter had scarred me, but you used my own spell against me. That calls for retribution.” He growled darkly.

Harry felt suddenly dead inside. He did hurt Snape then, after Dumbledore’s death. One of his spells, probably Sectumsempra, did reach Snape at one point. As he remembered back to that night, he realized he did something even worse. “I also called you a coward.” He remarked quietly.

“Indeed you did.” Snape sighed looking away, his hand tightening around the mysterious pendant on the silver chain. The man shook himself and started buttoning up his shirt. Harry just stared at him mesmerized. He watched the sharp cheekbones, the black eyes, the long, dark eyelashes. The man seemed so familiar as if they had met in a previous life. He hid the medallion again under the white shirt and looked at Harry. They were just looking at each other for a minute and Harry could feel his chest tightening. The black eyes were endless and filled with so many emotions; sadness, pain, misery, and something else. Desire.

“You’re not a coward.” Harry acknowledged in a soft tone. He stood up and put a hand on the back of the sofa, right next to where Snape’s head rested. The black eyes watched his every move intently. As he towered over the other man, Snape was suddenly forced to look up at him and his silk like hair fell back slightly. Harry kneeled on the couch with his right leg, letting his mind go absolutely blank. He didn't want to think anymore. He didn't want to ponder on the consequences or even consider what he was about to do. “You’re the bravest man I have ever known.” He asserted firmly.

“Potter...” Snape began but his voice trailed off. He uncrossed his legs and shifted slightly, his hips bucking up. Harry took that as an invitation and placed his left leg on the other side of the man. “Potter, what is the meaning of this?” Snape asked but it sounded more like a warning to Harry. He put a hand on Gryffindor’s chest, pushing him away. But the young man’s hands went to his former professor’s shoulders and grasped him tightly. “I said-“

“Shut up.” Harry interrupted him.

“Potter, what the hell are you doing?” Snape asked growling.

Instead of an answer, Harry slid his forefinger over the line of Snape’s lower lips, imagining it would be his own lips doing the exact same motion.

“Potter, you are drunk!” Harry could feel the lips form the words under his touch. He lowered himself onto the man. He groaned harshly when he felt hardness against his own erection.

“Fuck yeah, I am.” Harry admitted, pressing himself more firmly against Snape, whose hand was trapped between them. “I wouldn’t dare do this any other way.” He laughed softly but terrified.

“Potter!” Snape cautioned him once more but it did nothing to Harry. He put his finger on Snape’s lips, effectively silencing him, while his hips bucked forwards slightly, his cock twitching eagerly towards the contact.

“Shut up.” Harry said again and Snape breathed in sharply. He seemed aggravated for a second then his hands went to Harry’s hips and grasped onto them so firmly it was almost bruising. As the fingers dashed into his skin, steadying him, Harry just moaned again. “Just do it. No one has to know about this.” Harry assured him, pressing his finger against the lips more strongly. He looked into the endless black eyes as he offered, “You can take this as retribution or as release, I don't care. Just shut up and do it.” Snape’s breathing fastened but he didn't push Harry away so the young man brushed away the silky hair and leaned into the older man’s neck and kissed it softly right over the pulse point. He nudged his forefinger between the soft lips and breathed into Snape’s ear, “Suck it.”

Snape moaned and his lips opened up and Harry slipped his finger into the wet mouth. The grip on his hips wasn’t pushing him away anymore, but pulling him closer and closer, directing him precisely against another hard erection. Snape’s tongue twirled around his finger and Harry sighed relieved into the nearest skin. He buried his fingers in the raven black hair at Snape’s nape.

They moved against each other leisurely, as if they had the whole universe to themselves, but Harry knew this was actually their world breaking into pieces right at that moment. His stomach made a summersault every time Snape’s tongue moved against his finger, while the sharp, crooked teeth were biting him wildly.

Snape sucked his forefinger but Harry felt it on his cock and he almost came. His moves turned even slower, trying to forestall the moment this perfectness would end. He tugged on the raven hair, while taking Snape’s earlobe between his lips.

“Fuck...” Harry moaned lightly, when the other man’s groin suddenly smashed against him more fervently. He could feel Snape smile around his finger. He pressed his chest tightly against the Slytherin, and caressed the man’s jaw with his thumb.

With a last lick, Snape released his finger and Harry raised it to his own mouth. Looking deeply into the black eyes, he drew his own tongue on its whole length. Snape’s eyes widened and Harry was sure for a second that the man wanted to kiss him. But the next second, Snape’s mouth was on his neck instead of his lips, and he had no reason to object.

The sharp tongue licked the line of his neck, the warm, raspy flesh on his skin almost burning hot. He gasped loudly and breathless, while his erection was sliding against Snape’s. Even though their cocks were still covered, the sensation was almost maddening. Harry couldn't even dare imagine how it would feel to slide against Snape’s bare prick, to grasp it or to taste it. He dropped his head back as a satisfied moan broke out of his throat.

He arched his body away from Snape as he buried both his hands in the other man’s long hair and rutted sensually against the other wizard. To his pleasure, Snape leaned with him, not letting their bodies part even an inch. Snape’s palm was suddenly flat on Harry’s waist, his fingers spread out like a fan. His right hand moved to the collar of Harry’s shirt and pulled it away. As he tugged the fabric wildly, the top button gave in to the pressure and snapped.

“Fucking hell Snape...” Harry pressed out panting, his thrusting against the other’s body becoming more languid but steady and resolute.

“You should have stopped when I told you to.” Snape murmured against his skin.

Harry leaned to his ear and nipped on the shell gently before he whispered, “You never told me to stop.”

Snape froze suddenly and Harry waited, knowing that his former professor was going through their previous conversion in his mind. When the man let out a hopeless, desperate whimper Harry pulled him even closer and started moving again, pressing his cock to the older man’s. Snape was so hard against him that Harry could feel the precise outline of the long erection. He pressed their foreheads together and looked down on their bodies.

The view brought him too close to his orgasm yet he could not close his eyes or look away. Both of their pricks tensed against the soft fabric of their pants, precome turning the black trousers even darker. He aimed his cock to brush against the bulging head of the Slytherin’s shaft and was rewarded with more eager thrusts.

“Gods...” Snape groaned ardently, his usually smooth voice now ragged and coarse from pleasure.

Harry repeated the motion and kept doing it until Snape was panting, and his breathing kept hitching with every fierce thrust. Their lips were so close Harry could feel the hot air against his own wet lips he was relentlessly biting but none of them was brave enough to close that short distance.

“Ah... Mmm... Fuck yeah...” Harry heard Snape breathless moans and found that they were the most erotic sounds anyone could utter.

His mind was lost between the borders of reality and fantasy again. Suddenly, other pictures broke out from the depth of his brain. They must have been dreams but if they were, these were the most vivid and vibrant dreams Harry had ever had.

“Severus...” Harry instinctively gasped while almost coming and Snape must have snapped when he heard his given name. He gripped Harry’s hips again and was thrusting up with wild and frantic moves.

Harry’s eyes opened up and he realized Snape was watching him, his eyes dark like the midnight sky. When their eyes connected Snape’s erection smashed against his cock one more time and the older man came with a feral cry. Harry could swear he heard him shout “Harry” in the midst of his orgasm, but as Harry was coming too he might have been delusional at the moment.

They crushed against the couch, both blind from pleasure, panting hard and not yet ready to let go of the moment. Harry kept sliding against the other hot body sensually until the blinding whiteness and the unearthly buzzing in his head dissipated. When he felt the bruising hard grip falling off his body he moved away from Snape too and crashed down on the other side of the sofa.

It was like all the alcohol he had drank that day hit him right at that second. He felt dizzy, the world moved around him, he was smashed and his head hurt but he was more satisfied than in years. His eyes were closed tightly, and he heard Snape’s still ragged breathing. With his last effort he casted two non-verbal cleaning spells as he felt his underwear way too uncomfortable and sticky, then he drifted off to a world, where after something like this, he could simply cuddle up to Snape and fall asleep like that.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus turned his head towards the other but didn't dare open his eyes yet. Potter’s breathing was even, he already fell asleep and Severus wished dreams would come and take him too. Instead, he was wide awake, his fingers inching closer and closer to the leg that pressed against his thigh. When he finally touched Potter’s ankle, the man let out a soft sigh, but slept on.

Severus opened his eyes slowly. Potter was really lying next to him just after an orgasm. Their friendship was standing already on weak legs, how could it survive this? With the dance they were already edging on the border and with this they didn't simply tumble over, they crashed to the in-between and went down in flames. And what flames they were, Severus hadn’t felt this satisfied in years.

Potter was drunk, but Severus couldn't have that excuse. He wanted to hate himself for taking advantage of Potter, while in the meantime he felt it was he, who was used. For Potter, this was just release, for Severus, this was imprisonment. For so long he had repressed his urges concerning the young man, now he had thrown it all away for what? A glorious hour? Was it even an hour? Less? More?

He did hate himself, loathed even, because would Potter ask him again, Severus would grant it, everything and even more. And that wasn’t right, shouldn’t be right. Why did it feel right then?

The casualness in which Potter lay now was almost shameless. One leg on the ground, the other pressed to Severus. He was lying on his back, his hands on his stomach, his head turned towards the back of the couch. His groin, which a moment ago was hard and moving fast against Severus’ cock, carried only implications now. Propositions Severus would have never initiated himself, however when asked he simply couldn't deny them from Potter. He observed the sleeping man, watched him, the unruly ink black hair, the pink lips, the strong jaw, the long eyelashes and just let his feelings rush over him. Why did it have to be Potter? Of all the people, why him?

When he stood up, Potter stirred and stretched out his left leg as if searching for the missing warmness. He knew he should leave Potter here on the couch, he also knew that would not be what he was about to do. He knelt down on one leg right before the couch and Potter must have felt it because he turned his head towards Severus, still sleeping.

Severus smiled at the involuntarily movement, but then shook his head and slithered a hand under Potter’s knees and the other under his back. He lifted the man surprisingly easily, though he was heavy, heavier than he expected and he was too tired to let his mind ponder on the fact that he had an expectation about Potter’s weight in his arm.

He carried the young man upstairs and brought him into his own bedroom. He placed him softly onto his own bed and covered him with his own blanket. He wondered if Potter felt the same way last night when he invited Severus to his bed. The feeling was astoundingly satisfying, Severus chanced almost more than the previous orgasm. But just almost. 

He pressed a soft kiss to Potter’s temple and the young man moved again, reacted to his closeness and turned his face towards Severus, nuzzling him. He leaned away quickly, before Potter could wake up and push him away. That would break Severus. But why? Why was he already harbouring such strong emotions towards this man? Why would rejection from Potter, Potter, devastate him?

He undressed then pulled on his gray and green chequered pyjama pants and an old black shirt. He slipped under the covers noiselessly. The warmness he shared with Potter’s body embraced him. He tried to keep the distance from Potter; a futile attempt he realized, when his fingers brushed against Potter’s fingertips.

He placed all his hopes into the young man’s hands. Would he suffer more was up to Potter now.

 

o.O.o

 

Harry knew these were dreams. He was sure about that because somehow, everything felt too blunt and Harry, only Merlin knew how but was certain it wasn’t supposed to be like this. When Snape kissed his neck, his skin fired up, when the man licked the shell of his ear, his guts twisted and his groin keened for a touch. When Snape kissed his lips, it was heaven. Sweet and mesmerizing, wild and innocent, needy and soft at the same time.

The dream wasn’t like this. It was exciting but not passionate. It should be better. Why did he know this with utmost certainty?

The dream changed. So did the feeling. It wasn’t a dream anymore but it wasn’t reality either. What then?

Snape pressed against him but not on the sofa. They were horizontal. On a bed? When? Why? How? The older man was fully clothed and in his teaching robes, not in the white shirt, he was wearing the previous night, and Harry... Harry was wearing only a boxers.

“I’d never beg,” he said to Snape as a response to a question that wasn’t even asked, maybe. But he knew for certain that later on he did beg, when Severus, yes it was Severus then, finally slid against him utterly naked. That was the first time he felt another body against him like this, without clothes dimming the sensation. It was a divine feeling.

Severus pressed fingers into him. Why was he even allowed to use the first name back then? There was pain, sweet and delicious, then the fingers were gone. Severus, yes Severus, was hard and wet and he thrust into him. And yes, then he begged loudly, screamed for mercy, his sinful moans echoed in the dark room. But his voice wasn’t the only noise in the room. Severus was too... yes the sounds... oh yes... Snape fucked him once, twice? How many times? Took something, claimed him, but gave something in return... something Harry cherished more than anything, more than life itself. Whatever it was, it was robbed from him now, taken, locked away safely, and waiting to be released. But what was it?

These pictures weren’t dreams anymore, oh no, those could never be this intense. Severus’ cock was in his mouth, the black eyes glinted playfully, teasing as his professor’s prick disappeared between his lips and Harry hummed lustfully. Severus enjoyed this, loved it even. And Harry felt the same way. He enjoyed the sensation of the velvety cock that slid in out of his mouth and simply loved the eager groans that broke out from Severus’ mouth. That time Severus came into his mouth and screamed his name, he shouted “Harry” when he emptied himself, his heels digging into the bed, his hips pushing up, thrusting and twitching. The taste on Harry’s lips was wicked and addictive.

He was younger back then, much, much younger and exhausted when he crashed on Severus for the millionth time, yet his body was still burning, craving for more. And he did get more, later on. He got everything. Friendship, trust, love.

No, these weren’t dreams and it wasn’t even reality.

These were memories. Impossible memories.

His eyes shot open immediately, the excruciating pain making him forget about the vivid dream at once. Only the sensation lingered on, the images drifted away faster than clouds in the wind.

It took him a second to realize where he was. His eyes focused as much as they could on the man next to him, on the dark hair that fanned out on the shell coloured pillow, on the closed eyes. He registered the closeness, and the soft fingers against his own.

The sudden, sharp pain made him jerk away so vehemently, he fell off the bed with a loud thud, dragging the blanket down with himself.

The images, only a few, returned and each felt like a smack on the back of his head. Kisses, heated and soft; touches, eager and calming; comforting silence, and sex. A lot of wild and passionate sex.

What the hell was going on?

Harry, lying on the ground, tried to even his breathing. With eyes wide open, he was staring at the ceiling.

Long fingers grasped onto the edge of the bed and suddenly Snape’s face drifted into his vision.

“If I knew you preferred the ground,” said the husky, sleepy voice, “I would have kicked you down there myself.” The silky hair fell forward, jovial smiled tugged on the thin lips. “You‘re snoring.”

“Only when I’m drunk.” Harry extenuated, his voice also croaky. Snape fumbled for something on the nightstand, then dropped Harry’s glasses onto his chest.

“Then don't be drunk the next time you’re in my bed.” Snape advised still hoarsely, turning around, dragging a bit of the blanket off Harry and back on himself.

Harry didn't dare ask what Snape meant by next time.

“I don't even remember getting in your bed the first time.”

“Not surprised...” Mumbled the middle of the bed. “You probably drank yourself unconscious.”

Harry suspected it wasn’t the alcohol that knocked him out, more likely the orgasm but he didn't want to divulge this small information. He didn't have to ask how he ended up in the bed. He suspected he was carried in here, which destroyed a bit more of his self-esteem. Best way to seduce your former professor, really. An assassin trying to murder you, a lot of whiskey, some frottage and unconsciousness. No wonder his love life was this unsuccessful.

He sat up, and the room started going round and round. He looked at Snape, who seemed to be sleeping again, barely covered by the blanket. His black shirt wrinkled up, revealing about three inches of delicious looking, naked, white skin.

Harry closed his eyes and made a decision. Not now.

Whatever they had started yesterday, Harry wouldn’t leave it at that but it had to wait. He wasn’t willing to risk Snape’s safety. He had to find these mysterious attackers before he moved onto Snape again. Figuratively or literally. Not to mention finding out this mess with the cinnamon and the headaches.

He stood up, swayed a little but at least his head seemed clear again. No trace of the confusing pictures.

“Sober-Up potion in the second drawer.” Snape murmured into his pillow. He nuzzled it, and then took a deep breath. Harry tried not to think about the small detail that a few minutes ago, his own head rested there and the pillow probably smelled like his aftershave.

He stepped to the nightstand and pulled out the first drawer. There wasn’t any potion there, only a small bottle of lubricant and some other odds and ends.

Harry inhaled sharply.

Snape lifted his head and his body tensed but he didn't look at Harry. “I said second drawer, Potter.” He groaned firmly.

Harry closed the drawer quickly and opened the other one. There it was, sobering potion in a little purple vial. He unscrewed the cork and swallowed two huge gulps of the bitter potion. It was a shame sugar ruined its effect.

A shiver went through his body, but he felt immediately better. He left the brew on the nightstand, knowing Snape would need it too, then looked around.

Snape’s bedroom was still dim as thick curtains closed out the sunshine. Over the bed, there was a nice painting of Hogwarts in the rising sun. Some of the castle’s lights were still shining and owls flew over the grey sky. Harry found the painting very relaxing.

The other side of the room was covered with a fireplace and bookshelves. He stepped over to them and ran his fingers over the spines, reading the titles. Surprisingly they weren’t only about potions and Dark Arts. There were mystery novels, science fiction and even tales, muggle ones.

He turned around, Snape was still lying on the bed but Harry knew he wasn’t sleeping anymore. His black hair beautifully contrasted to the shell coloured sheets and Snape’s pure white skin.

“This is really nice.” Harry smiled at the sleepy, peaceful form, enjoying the view. “I mean your place.”

“Mmm...” Snape groaned back, half asleep. He turned onto his back as he murmured. “It feels like something is still missing...” He took a deep breath and rubbed his hand over his face, then slid it into his raven hair. Harry suspected he wasn’t supposed to hear that.

“Have you tried sunshine?” Harry asked teasingly, then walked to the windows. He pulled away the thick curtains and was surprised to find it was only dawning. He opened the glass door, which led to the huge balcony. The wind was nice and refreshing against his face, almost as good as the Sober-Up potion.

He stepped outside, walked to the wooden railing then leaned on it with his elbows. Dark clouds floated over the sea, the sky was still black over his head, but the horizon was getting brighter and brighter. The water down below was rippling every time the wind licked its grey surface.

For some inherent reason Harry didn't like the dawn. It was instinctive, he guessed as far back as he could remember. Maybe because he had to spend a dawn on a threshold once. Maybe... it was something darker, more devastating. Dawns always made him immensely and unexplainably sad.

Yet, at that moment, he found himself admire the dark sky. This sunrise was nice and peaceful. It was uplifting... liberating.

“Are you familiar with the concept of ‘déjà vu’?”

“The ‘I’ve already seen that’ feeling?” Harry asked back looking sideways at Snape who had just joined him at the railing. The man looked pensive as he observed the serenely waving sea. His black hair was drifting slightly in the soft wind.

“We have never met at daybreak, have we?” Snape queried softly.

“No.”

“Then the number of your signs is increasing.” Snape heaved a sigh. “I do not like the sunrise.”

“Nor do I.” Harry agreed. “Yet this one...”

“This one is nice.”

Snape looked at him slowly and his black eyes were burning. Harry felt that were he to kiss him now, maybe Snape wouldn’t pull away. But he couldn't, they had to figure this out first. “You took something from me.” Harry said then fixing his gaze on the endless water.

“What?”

Harry chuckled. ‘My virginity’ sounded ludicrous enough in his head, saying it aloud would surely convince Snape he was dealing with a madman yet again. So he just remained in silence.

“Well, if you find out what you are missing, do let me know and I shall be happy to give it back. Until then... breakfast?”

“Sounds lovely.” Harry groaned and so did his stomach. He managed to catch the small smile on Snape’s lips as he turned around. “Snape...”

“Hm?” He asked back, standing in the middle of the balcony. He looked so domestic in the grey-green tartan pants and the old t-shirt, barefoot.

“What’s on the silver chain?”

Snape frowned as he reached under his shirt. “This?” He held up the small golden medallion. Harry stepped to him to take a closer look. “I do not know.” Snape laughed. “I imagine something I should never forget.”

It wasn’t a medallion but a golden ring, with silver motives twirling all around it. Harry suddenly felt excited and scared at the same moment. He grasped the silver chain around his own neck and pulled it over his head. He raised up his white gold ring and held it in eye level to Snape who seemed scared for a second too.

“Fascinating engraving; where did you get the idea?” Snape remarked idly, his fingers however were shaking as he took the ring.

“I forgot.” Harry answered. Snape’s black eyes snapped at him and the man laughed slightly.

“Interesting.”

“That’s not the word I would use.” Harry remarked.

“And what word would you use to describe the situation, Potter?”

“Creepy? Scary? Weird? Impossible? Pick one.”

Snape slid the silver chain back around Harry’s neck then took a deep breath. “What would you like to eat?”

Harry looked Snape dead in the eyes. The small smirk that tugged on one side of Snape’s lips indicated that the man wouldn’t be absolutely surprised if Harry’s answer would be a simple, ‘You.’ But Harry surprised both of them when he answered, “Anything as long as it has bacon on the side.”

Snape raised an eyebrow but shrugged and turned around. “As you wish. Omelette it is then.”

If the man had said eggs and sausage, Harry might have reconsidered his not moving onto Snape project. “Can I use your bathroom?” He asked realizing this project might be harder than he imagined.

“You can find fresh towels and toothbrush under the sink. The wardrobe is next door. It may not be as... colourful as you are used to. Your shirt is hanging at the forefront, it’s clean, too.”

Harry didn't understand why it made him feel giddy that he was allowed to wear Snape’s clothes. But it did.

They stepped back inside and Snape went towards the kitchen, while Harry to the bathroom. If they wanted to figure out this whole mess, Harry needed his full attention. And for that he needed to get the blood back to his brain and not in the lower parts of his body.

 

o.O.o

 

The thinly cut bacon rashers were sizzling in the pan, while Severus was dicing the vegetables into small and even parts. Years of practice with Potions gave him basic skills for his cooking talent. He realized in his early ages that there wasn’t really much difference between the two. Since then cooking became his relaxing hobby, while Potions his work.

Suddenly Fawkes flew into the kitchen, shrieking loudly, his voice almost high pitched enough to break glasses. Something was wrong, something bad happened. The sheer terror shook his system and Severus dropped the knife and grabbed his wand even before the sharp claws seized his shoulder.

“Potter!” He shouted vainly, while Fawkes pulled him out of the kitchen and upstairs.

He ran and didn't even stop when he was in front of the bathroom. His heart was beating wildly. No one could come through his wards undetected. He didn't notice that the bird wasn’t with him anymore, he just waved with his wand. The door opened without resistance.

Potter was alone and healthy, showering. Severus could see him clearly, there wasn’t any glass or shower curtain to obstruct his vision. He heard cheerful chirps from the outside and he knew the damn bird was laughing. He made a mental note to look up later how to kill an immortal phoenix.

More than being alone, healthy and showering, Potter was also naked and hard. This had not eluded Severus’ attention, it was actually the second thing he noticed.

But of course, Harry Potter wasn’t just naked and hard. Harry Potter was wanking in Severus’ shower, mere hours after they shared a particularly satisfying orgasm. Severus understood Potter’s urges for another release, what Severus didn't understand was why Potter had excluded his participation in the process this time.

The young man was grabbing onto his erection, his head was tilted back slightly, his moans were louder than the rippling water, his hips were smashing forward and his lust-clouded eyes were fixed on Severus.

Even more than that, the second their eyes connected Potter groaned loudly and came onto his fingers, his whole body shuddering wildly.

That was almost more than Severus could endure. He should go. He should leave Potter here and never talk to the man again. Last night they had the alcohol to blame, even Severus could blame his irresponsible actions on the blasted thing. But this morning? What excuse, besides the obvious, could he come up with?

Potter was panting, his fingernail scratched the dark, royal blue tiles, and his softening cock was twitching between his semen-covered fingers.

“What the... fucking hell, Snape...?” Potter asked sounding more exasperated than angry.

Severus thought of explaining himself. For a fleeting second he actually considered blaming it on the bird.

Instead, he remained wordless. He saw himself walk to Potter and raise the hand that covered now the softening cock. He saw himself licking the semen off the other man’s hand before the water could wash it down.

Potter’s green eyes widened and revelation brightened his face, as he let a soft moan escape his mouth. Severus realized at that moment, he was doomed.

“You should be more careful around me, Snape.” Potter groaned. “I’m not that snotty brat in fifth year anymore; Legilimens is something I now excel. I learned from the best, after all.” He raised his hand for emphasis, and the meaning of his word could not be even slightly ambiguous anymore. “You should never let your guard down. Not with me, Snape. You are just too tempting.”

“Tempting? Me?” Severus heard himself ask back without even the slightest trace of embarrassment for being caught imagining things he probably shouldn’t. “Look at yourself, Potter... You’re the very definition of temptation.”

With that he walked under the shower, just as he was, fully clothed. He grabbed Potter’s hand and drew it to his lips. Potter hissed but didn't pull away. Severus took that as consent. He licked Potter’s palm then his tongue moved around the stretched out fingers removing the last remnants of the opalescent fluid. The young man moaned lightly and Severus stepped closer.

“Fucking hell Snape...” Potter mumbled eagerly with eyes closed. Severus grabbed his other wrist and smashed Potter against the tiles, holding him there with his whole body. The green eyes opened straight away and Potter’s gaze was fixed on him again. “Are you kidding me?”

Severus just raised an eyebrow and looked down on his own body. The water was streaming down from his long hair, his thin black shirt stuck to his body. His obvious interest couldn't be more visible as his wet pants clung to his erection like a second skin.

“Do I look like that, Potter?” Severus asked determinedly. To avoid any misunderstanding however, he pressed closer, sighing softly when Potter’s naked body touched his barely covered erection.

“Oh fuck!” Potter gasped loudly. “Oh fuck no, you're not kidding, are you?” He almost cried, his arms going around Severus’ neck, pulling him to his wet skin as strongly as possible. Severus grabbed the man’s thighs and lifted him up, crushing the young body against the tiles yet again. Potter whimpered desperately then he started rutting against Severus again, only this time one of them was already naked.

Severus kissed onto Potter’s neck, licking down every drop of wetness, while his right hand was skating on the brawny body, pressing down strongly, feeling every vibrating muscle under the soft skin. His hand slid on the smooth chest and the Gryffindor arched into his touch. Severus let out a pleased groan into Potter’s neck as he kissed his way up towards the stubbly jaw.

Severus knew he was falling deeper and deeper and if he crashed, that would be deadly. But there was another option, something which seemed more and more possible. He could also fly.

“Fall with me.” He whispered as he pressed their foreheads together. They were so close he breathed in the air Potter had exhaled, before he slowly licked down a water drop from the man’s upper lip. He was shaking with repressed lust and anticipation.

“Wait... no...” Potter grunted desolately. “Stop... We can't.”

The sheer emptiness those words created in him was more than excruciating. He did fall; from the heights of pleasure, want and acceptance to the depth of nothingness, coldness and rejection within one second.

He softly let down Potter’s legs and stepped away. “As you wish.” His voice was colder than the lowest circle of hell. He turned around and stepped out of the water.

“Snape, wait... Please!” Potter begged from behind him, but Severus didn't want to hear him. “Let me... Damn it, let me explain!” Strong fingers grasped into his wrist but he tore himself out of the grip. “Snape!”

But Severus was already skipping down the stairs, two at a time, then he was already outside. Outside the house, then the garden, then the wards. He walked first with resolute steps then he broke into running, barefoot in the lush green grass. He was freezing but the feeling had nothing to do with his wet clothes.

He was running away from Potter, away from the pain as fast as possible. His lungs were burning, every muscle in his body strained but he didn't stop until his knees buckled. He slowed down in the middle of nowhere, the house just a tiny spot in the distance.

He felt like retching suddenly so he leaned down and placed his hands on his knees for support. He coughed a couple of times but nothing came up. He breathed in a steady rhythm of two short inhales and one long exhale for a few second and felt the dizziness dissipate slowly. The pain however became clearer and clearer.

He straitened himself up and started walking in a small circle, one hand on his hip, the other running through his hair. He was acting stupidly, he knew it. He just made a fool out of himself in front of the Bloody Chosen One.

He walked to the edge of the cliff and looked down. A hundred foot sheer drop was right in front of him, ending with solid rocks and angrily flapping water.

He wanted to jump. He wanted to fall and fall into the nothingness, into not feeling. He didn't want to die, he didn't fight his way through two wars to die a meaningless death now, he just wanted the horrible feelings to cease.

The shame, the rejection, the pain.

He closed his eyes and stepped away from the sea cliff. He dropped his head back and let the wind caress his body, while the rising sun dazzled his retina even through his eyelids. The wind became stronger and stronger while in the end there was a hurricane around him. His magic leaked out unnoticed and twirled with the air currents, invisible yet he could feel it, just as he could always feel Potter’s magic.

Potter...

He felt like laughing. He realized too late, he was indeed laughing.

Miserable and broken, he laughed with his palms against his head in the midst of a frantic whirlwind.

When did he fall this madly in love with Harry Potter?

When did the simple and docile affection turn into this devastating love? Or had it been always love?

He realized there wasn’t emptiness inside him anymore, it was serenity.

He had jumped a long time ago, probably when he forgot something that should have never been forgotten.

And he had been falling ever since. Falling for Potter, falling for the things they had lost, falling towards something better.

Whatever barrier didn't let him realize his feelings before, it was cracking now. Moreover, with every tiny crevice more and more of the truth was revealed.

All of a sudden, he felt energized, as if the rejection had swept his mind clear from the distractions of the keen desire and the chaotic confusion. His intellect, his greatest asset was working with hundred percent again, having one goal in focus.

Heartbreak was good for one thing and one thing only: gaining clarity.

They were only scratching the surface with instincts about coffee making and matching rings. There was so much more and finally, finally he saw it.

Fawkes’s song was calming and the whirling wind dissipated slowly around him. The phoenix wasn’t alone, Potter was jogging towards him, clothed this time and Severus was thankful for that. Clarity or not, a naked Potter was still distracting enough.

The bird carried a letter in his beak and Severus knew it was from Potter before Fawkes dropped it in his hand and perching himself on Severus’ shoulder. Whatever was in that letter Potter either didn't have the courage to say it face to face or was sure Severus would hex him out of sight before he could say even something like ‘Hullo’. Or probably both.

Potter stopped thirty feet from him and waited clearly for Severus to read. Therefore, he opened the letter and started reading. The letter was written fast, the ink had barely dried before Potter folded it. The handwriting, Severus remembered it very clearly from Hogwarts, would have been unreadable to almost anyone, but to Severus’ trained eyes. Every line in the letter made his heart drum faster and faster while his theory became even more solid.

Please don't do this. You will kill me if you do this now.

You know why I pushed you away. Do not pretend you don't. I told you last night. You are too important. Someone wants to kill me and I can't have you in the crossfire. Why do you insist on staying then?

You are the stupidest person I have ever had the pleasure to know if you don't realize that is the only reason why I pushed you away. You have to know I want you. You have to realize I’m attracted to you. But what am I saying? I realized all of this just a few days ago. I’m drawn to you Severus Snape. I can't explain why or how but I feel whole again ever since you appeared on my doorstep. You're the clever one, you're the Professor; explain it then. Why did it affect me so much when you whispered in my ear that you love me? Look at this, my hands are shaking. Can you even read this? I knew it was a game and yet the storm of emotions it stirred in me, had still not quieted. Why did it feel good, perfect even to wake up next you? Why did it feel as if this should be normal?

Please don't tell me I’m the only one who feels this! Please tell me you see it, too! You have to. Or can it be that I’m mistaken about you once again? Am I making a fool out of myself now?

You're a maddening man, you know that right? I’m getting hard again, just because I can still feel the outline of your cock pressed against my leg. You think I pushed you away because I don't want you? I thought you were clever. Think again. Let me help you. I was thinking of you while wanking in the shower. I was thinking of you fucking me, claiming me. And then you came in. Imagine that. No surprise I came the moment I saw you. It has always been you, no one else. Well, there was the Half-Blood Prince. Why do you think I’ve kept that book? Because it’s yours.

I have a safe house. Did you know that? I could have gone there. Or to Sirius and Remus. Both of those houses have the Fidelius on them. Why did I come here then, you ask? Because I feel safe with you. And this safety is what I am not willing to risk. I could never forgive myself if you got hurt while trying to help me. I almost died when I had to watch you in the Shack. I am physically sick every time I have to think about it. I can't let that happen again.

You have to understand this. You have to understand how much you mean to me. You have to understand that there is nothing I wouldn’t do to keep you safe. It’s not because I think you can't protect me. It’s because I know that you would do anything to protect me. Do you see the difference?

I could go and stay with my godfather until this mess is resolved. I could do that. But I don't want to. I want to stay with you. I want to stay right where you are, close enough so that I could reach out and touch you if I were brave enough.

Would you let me? Look at me. Would you let me stay? Can I come back? To you?

Severus folded the letter as he murmured, “Idiot...” quietly. He looked up, Potter was indeed there, shuffling around anxiously, waiting for permission about something that was granted to him from the first second.

He took a deep breath and strode towards Potter with determined steps. He knew the boy was gone completely from Potter’s personality when he, instead of stepping back, straightened himself, while his emerald gaze searched for Severus’.

“Don't ask foolish questions, Potter, of course you can stay. I said you are always welcomed here and I meant it.” Severus noted reaching him. “You are probably the safest as long as you are close to me, anyways.”

“So you understand? And you’re not angry at me?” Potter asked with almost tangible anxiousness in his tone.

“What did I just tell you about foolish questions?” Severus smiled, which surprised Potter more than anything did. “And I do understand, finally after most likely years of not comprehending anything.”

“What’s going on? What are you talking about?” The young man asked, his uncomprehending making him somehow more charming.

“Don't you see, Potter?” Severus asked back, letting the teasing smile spread on his lips.

“See what? I don't see anything.”

“The rings, Potter! The cinnamon! I don't remember something very important.” Severus smirked confidently.

“Yes, I think we already gathered that much.” Potter huffed.

“You don't seem to understand my point.” Severus laughed. “Potter answer me this. What kind of a person do you think I am?”

“That is a very tough question, Snape.”

“Let me rephrase it then. Am I known to behave like a teenage girl?”

“No,” Potter snorted. “Definitely not.”

Severus started walking towards the cottage and the Gryffindor loyally followed him. “Correct answer, Potter, I’m not a bloody teenage girl. I don't fall in love with someone in merely two days.”

“You’re in love?” Harry asked softly and uncertain.

“Oh yes, I am indeed.” Snape smirked and Potter gulped heavily. ”Do you see it now?”

Potter nodded hesitantly then shook his head more certain about that motion. “No...” He murmured.

“Oh for the love of magic,” Severus sighed, stopping dead in his track. Potter walked two more steps before he managed to stop too and turned back to Severus, who said, “we don't have all day, use that handsome head of yours, will you, dear?”

“You don't fall in love in two days yet you claim to be in love.” Potter summarized.

Severus stepped in front of Potter, grabbed his chin and lifted it slightly uprights. “I am in love. Your conclusion?” He all but whispered.

“You are... under some love potion?” Potter groaned, his green eyes suddenly darkened by lust. Severus had to smile at that.

“Oh no, Potter this is no love potion. This is genuine.” He murmured, caressing the slightly stubbly face with his nose. He leaned away with a quick motion and Potter almost fell into his arms. “How did I fall in love then? Or better question...”

“When did you fall in love?” Potter frowned.

“Exactly.”

“You don't remember falling in love? That’s your point? You know sometimes it can just happen over the years without you noticing it.”

“My point is a whole lot bigger than that, Potter. I’m not talking about falling in love with anyone, I’m talking about falling in love with you. How could I have not noticed that? My very life depended on the fact whether I can pretend to hate you or not. I’m not like you, I don't wear my heart on my sleeve, my emotions run deep enough that others do not notice them, but me, I know of them. All of them. I simply have to, or I die. I might choose to discard them, but I always must know how I feel. Are you even listening?” Severus asked noticing the smile on Potter’s face.

“You are in love with me.”

“Of course that is the only sentence that gets through your thick head. Why am I even trying?” Severus snapped, feeling however more affectionate than irritated.

“You really are?” Potter inquired gently, stepping closer.

“Of course I am you dunderhead, that’s what I’ve been preaching about for ten minutes! Can I continue?

“Yes, please. So you would have known if you are in love. With me that is.” Potter’s smug grin was infuriating in a whole different level. It was something Severus wanted to vanish with a fierce kiss at least.

“Yes. And I did know about it. I left clues about it, didn't I?” Severus pulled the white gold ring out from Harry’s shirt. “We left clues, Potter, both of us. While someone wanted us to forget something that should never be forgotten, we left clues for our future selves to realize there is something lost.”

“Someone made us forget we love each other? Who the bloody hell would do that? And why?”

“That I do not know... yet.” Severus sighed and started walking again, Potter catching up quickly. “Albus has something to do with it, that’s for sure.” He looked at the young man right beside him, who was easily keeping step with him. “Don't worry, we will figure this out.”

Potter stopped suddenly this time and grabbed his arms. Severus raised an eyebrow, the Gryffindor’s eyes bore onto him. “So, we were in love?”

“Indeed it seems like, Mister Potter, you had fallen head over heels in love with your Potions Professor.”

“And he fell in love with me?”

“Yes, he did.” Severus smiled warmly. “Neither of us remembers it yet, but you feel it too, am I right?”

“Oh yes.” Potter moaned then laughed feebly. “You know... I think I should kiss you right now.” He smirked lightly after a few seconds of silence.

“But you won't.” Severus grinned taunting.

“We just realized we’ve been in love for years and some evil, twisted bastard made us forgot about that and you don't want to kiss me? Why?” Potter demanded but his tone was light.

“First of all, you only realized it now, I’ve known this for about... twenty minutes. Secondly love, if you don't let me fuck you in the bathroom, do not expect me to let you kiss me on this field either.” Severus explained with something close to a shrug, his jovial sneer still in place.

“Oh that is just...” Potter stuttered outraged. “Revenge? Really? That is...” His eloquent explanation died off when Severus started walking again. “You know I’m starting to think we actually made each other forget this love.” He shouted after Severus.

“Impossible. Why leave the clues then? Besides, you are probably right. We should figure this out first, leave the... intimacy for later.”

“Okay, so this is how love with you works then? On the basis of, ‘I scratch your back-‘“

“And I let you fuck me. Yes, dear, something similar to that.” Severus finished the sentence for the other. He realized after a few steps that Potter wasn’t coming. With an exasperated sigh, he turned around and looked at the young man expectantly.

Potter was deeply in his thoughts for a second then he grinned playfully. “That sounds remarkably good actually.”

Severus smirked at him. “Indeed it does.”

They continued their walk back to the house and Severus couldn’t help but feel just a bit scared of where this was going. They had dived into this together and now they were falling. Severus just hoped there would be something to catch them both at the end.

Chapter Text

Harry wasn't sure how to feel at the moment. His mind was a whirlpool of thoughts and emotions, none of which he was able to handle. However besides all the confusing feelings, he also felt somehow calm and relaxed.

Love?

The more he thought about it the more he realized that yes, he was indeed in love with Severus Snape. This wasn't a crush, not even just a physical and emotional attraction towards the man.  He didn't simply care for him. He loved him. And he couldn't say how it happened. It seemed, however impossible as it sounded, that it was always within him, running deep, etched into his very soul.

He remembered his fifth year, when his curiosity was almost out of control, when more than once he almost said or did something to Snape just to provoke him in some way and have his attention. But that was seven years ago. When did they fall in love? What happened to it?

Snape went to have a shower, right after they got back and Harry couldn't help but feel tempted to follow him.  Nevertheless, he understood that they had to wait with anything like that. Even last night was a mistake. If he got his hands on Snape, naked Snape, he wouldn't let go, that was for sure. He needed to catch the assassins first, and then solve this mystery with the memories. After that, he and Snape could finally finish what they had started last night. The situation was confusing enough. Sex would just muddle up everything even more.

Harry put the omelettes on two plates with the bacon on the side, just as Snape walked in. Harry turned around and one of the plates fell out of his hand. The omelette was saved only thanks to Snape's fast reactions. He levitated the plate of food back on the table, while Harry was gaping at him.

“Damn it, Snape. What's this supposed to mean?” Harry cried, almost tossing down the other plate on the table, his eyes fixed on the man in front of him.

“I beg your pardon?” The man uttered nonchalantly, taking out some knives and forks from a drawer.

“I wasn't aware we were having a date.” Harry groaned.

“We're not.”

“What's with the outfit then?”

“What's wrong with my outfit?”

“Nothing is wrong with your outfit. It's perfect. It looks absolutely perfect on you. And that’s my problem.” Harry became aware that he was not making any sense while he was staring at the man with eyes almost falling out. “You're wearing red. You never wear red.” Harry pointed out. His eyes seemed still transfixed on the man’s appearance. The charcoal gray pants hugged Snape’s body tightly, as Harry would if given the chance. His burgundy red, silk shirt appeared lush as if someone had just dumped some wine on the gorgeous man.

“Well, I do now.”

Harry remained quiet for a few minutes. They sat down at the table and started eating, two huge mugs of hot coffee steaming next to their plates.

“Snape?” Harry smiled shyly at the man.

“Hm?”

“You look incredibly hot.”

“Shut up, Potter.” Snape murmured, and Harry could swear he noticed a little bit of redness on his cheeks before he hid behind the edge of his mug. Harry smiled down at his bacon without any further comment. Suddenly, the man stirred on his chair and Harry felt his former professor press a pair of ice cold and bare feet under Harry’s thighs. He just grinned and looked at the older man with a raised eyebrow, but Snape suddenly seemed very interested in his omelette, so Harry just reached down with his left hand and started caressing the Slytherin’s ankle.

"You know," Harry started hesitantly then forked into his breakfast. "You can't just come out with something this big and expect me to act as if nothing happened.”

"I am not expecting anything like that. However, you must know me enough not to expect me to start talking about feelings. Admitting it was... challenging enough." Snape said softly, his black gaze not meeting Harry's searching eyes.

"It didn't seem challenging then."

"Potter..." Snape sighed exasperated then finally looked at Harry. "You had just broken my heart. I do not think you can imagine how much your rejection hurt. It was...”

"Devastating, as if the world had broken apart? Depressing, as if you could not see the colours anymore? Empty, as if the stars had disappeared from the night sky? Because that's how I would feel if you told me this was just a lie, a cruel joke." Harry admitted, brushing Snape’s skin with his fingertips.

"Surprising as it may be, I am not joking, Potter. I was devastated... destroyed until I read your letter. And in the meantime, a part of me, my heart, wasn't willing to believe in the rejection. A part of me knew you must love me somewhere deep.”

“I do." Harry admitted. "I am in love you. But I don't think it’s because of these memories surfacing. I think I did fall in love with you in the past two days. Or at least, I fell in love with you again."

“If that might be the case, please explain to me a couple of things, will you?” Snape asked, his black eyes bore into Harry’s gaze. “How did you feel when you saw me murder Albus? Because I remember, I felt horrible not just because of what I had done, but because of the disappointment I saw in your eyes when I looked at you.”

“I felt... betrayed. It... hurt like a cut in my heart.”

“I tortured you during your whole childhood, you thought I hated you and then I killed your mentor, your friend. How did you feel when you watched me die. Because I was grateful, that I could at least look at you one last time.”

Harry felt his heart ache with immense pain as the memories of that night drifted back. “Destroyed. As if someone had just torn a piece out of me.” Harry gasped, the grip in his chest tight and suffocating.

“How did you feel when you first saw me the next morning? Because I have never felt so safe and warm as when I had your arms around me.”

“Alive.” Harry breathed. “More alive than in years.” Harry’s eyes widened as the revelation crept through from a dark corner to the front of his mind.

“Look at us Potter. Two days, that was all it took. Two days we had to spend in close proximity and the whole process started. You can tell me you were willing to risk imprisonment to keep me out of Azkaban because you thought you were in my debt, but I know I would do the same for you anytime. And I also know why I stayed away from you the last five years, and I believe, it is the same reason for you as well.”

“Why?”

“Simple. Fear of rejection.” Snape smiled. “I had no excuse whatsoever anymore. You were not my student anymore. Voldemort was dead. Deep down, my heart realized that it was safe for us to... be us again. I wanted to see you, I craved to be with you. But I was terrified that you would reject me.”

“Reject you, Severus?” Harry laughed awkwardly. “I have wanted you since I was fifteen! Severus, I dream of you fucking me against something at least once a bloody week!”

"Good gracious ..." Snape moaned tossing his head back on the chair, his cutlery falling out of his hands. "Do not..."

"What's wrong, Severus?" Harry asked anxiously, as Snape's leg slipped off from beneath his thigh. The man’s back arched away from the chair and his long fingers slithered on his thigh, pressing down firmly, itching to go somewhere else suddenly.

“My name...” Snape moaned lost. “Do not say my name like that, Harry. Not now.”

“Oh fuck...” Harry groaned tossing his fork down as well, realizing what Snape was feeling at the moment. The silhouette of a hard cock was a pretty obvious clue, too. "I think it's bloody time for dessert.”

The dam of his restraint broke and there was no way in hell Harry was willing or capable to stop himself now.

With a fast motion, he dropped down from his seat and kneeled in front of Snape. He pushed the slightly shaking legs apart and leaned into Snape's crotch without any more hesitation. He pressed his forehead to the older man's stomach and slid his hand over the welcoming erection.

"I think we agreed to... uh... leave the intimacy for...  uh later..." Snape gasped pressing his groin up into Harry's touch, his hands grasping onto the edge of his seat.

"You saw me naked and coming. I deserve this too." Harry mumbled, his hands busy with unbuckling the slim black belt, then the silvery buttons and finally, pulling down the dark gray zipper.

"Of course it's you who deserves... Oh my-" Snape cried when Harry slipped his fingers into the pants and pulled his hard cock out. “...to jerk me out."

Harry grinned up at the man, wickedly. "Who said anything about jerking you out?" He asked then licked the head of Snape's erection.

 Both of them moaned simultaneously and Snape grabbed into Harry's hair with his right hand. The young man gave a wet kiss to the head again, while his hand moved on the hard shaft with languid moves. "For Merlin's sake Potter, you're killing me."

“Don't you think..." Harry started, sliding his tongue up and down on the whole length. "...that you're not the only one dying here? I promised myself not to touch you until we solve this mess.”

"At the moment I'm quite pleased that you can't keep your... ah yes... promises." The last word was shouted as Harry, meanwhile, took the whole cock into his mouth and sucked on it with vehemence. "Holy shit, Potter.... Ahh..."

Snape's grip in his hair was close to painful but Harry couldn't care less. He was too busy enjoying the smooth and stiff erection in his mouth. His tongue licked the soft head firmly over and over again, drawing pleasant groans from the older man.

"Up." Harry ordered and Snape lifted himself from the chair so that Harry could drag down the pants to his ankles. The young man took a second to appreciate the view in front of him. The white thighs were opened widely, Snape’s erection was red, its head almost purple from the need and glinting with wetness, the burgundy red shirt flew down his chest like velvety wine. Harry groaned before leaning back on the stiff manhood and sucking it hard again.

"How the bloody hell could I have forgotten this?" Snape groaned out wildly.

Harry half laughed and half moaned with his lips tightly around the erection before he grunted out, "Guess we better get some new memories then, right?"

Snape whined softly as a response, grabbing Harry with both his hands while directing his cock into the wet, hot mouth. "I wholeheartedly agree with you, Mister Potter.”

Harry flicked his finger to the last button on the burgundy shirt and his magic lashed out with a sudden wave, cutting off all the little red buttons. Snape growled so Harry murmured, “I can fix it later."

Snape let out a soft, amused laughter as he grabbed into the back of the chair with one hand. "I couldn't care... ahh... less about it." He kicked off his pants from one leg and put the back of his knees on Harry's shoulder. “Your magic." He uttered between shaking gasps.

Harry hummed softly before he let go of Snape's erection with a sinful, sloppy sound. He released his magic that was prickling under his skin again and let it caress Snape. The man in response groaned harshly and pulled Harry closer with his leg while his finger carded through Harry’s thick mane.

"For the love of Merlin, what on earth was that?" Snape moaned ardently, his whole body tensing with pleasure.

“Magic,” Harry murmured back, gripping the lower side of Snape's thighs and pulling him a bit forward on the chair. He leaned to Snape’s navel and pressed his tongue into his bellybutton. Harry folded his right hand around the hard cock and caressed it with firm strokes while his mouth moved on Snape's abdomen. His left hand meanwhile travelled on the bare chest. His thumb flicked over the pink bud and Snape let out another harsh breath.

“Fuck, Snape, you're damn responsive.” Harry laughed affectionately into the man's skin.

“Haven't been touched in a while, remember?” The answer was murmured between loud gasps, as Harry's finger kept playing with the older man’s nipple and his other hand slid tentatively on his arousal.

“I do remember kissing your body two days ago.” Harry chuckled.  His lips moved upwards and clasped around the hard nub while his hand moved up around Snape's neck.

“Do not even mention that.” Snape whined sliding his hand over Harry's. “I almost.... Mmm...”

“Almost...?” Harry asked back raising his glance, giving Snape a teasing grin. Meanwhile he slithered their hands over Snape's mouth, and brushed the lower lip with his middle finger.

“I was as close to fucking you, as you are now to fingering me.” Snape smirked, sliding Harry’s middle finger into his mouth.

Harry groaned harshly and as Snape's tongue moved around his finger again, he returned his attention to the twitching erection between them and took it into his mouth. Snape bit down on his finger and Harry groaned wildly. His own erection strained against his pants and he reached down to palm himself.

“Take it out.” Snape grunted, releasing Harry’s middle finger. The Gryffindor obeyed right away and slid his zipper down, freeing his erection. He started stroking himself with his right hand, while he pressed his left one over Snape’s balls, and he kept sucking on the cock between his lips. His eyes were stuck on his former professor who seemed close to losing his mind to the pleasure.

Harry pressed his wet middle finger to Snape’s entrance and started circling it there. Snape arched into his touch, pushing his hips forwards. When Harry slipped the digit through the first ring of muscles, they let out a harsh gasp and the young man suspected he wasn’t the only one who almost came. His own cock was thrusting as fervently into his hand as Snape was sliding into his mouth. He pressed his thumb down on the soft head, smearing precome, while his tongue licked the underside of the other’s prick and his middle finger moved slowly out from the warm body.

When he pushed it back, he curved it a little, letting his repressed instincts kick in. Snape screamed franticly and Harry knew, he was on the right track. Yes, they had done this before. He pressed in one more finger and brushed it against Snape’s prostate. The man was suddenly out of control. His body was thrashing on the chair, hips jerking up into the welcoming hotness then, pressing down onto the two wiggling fingers.

Snape grabbed onto the side of the chair again and pressed his shoulders against the back of it, his bottom wasn’t even touching the seat anymore. His legs on Harry’s shoulders were pulling firmly, even though Harry could not move any closer. His chest glistened with sweat in the early morning, his muscles constricting with every move. Harry couldn't take his eyes off of the beautiful body, his cock was twitching with keen arousal.

Yes, there was absolutely something familiar about this picture.

“Fucking hell, Severus, you look so beautiful like this...” Harry murmured letting go of Snape’s cock just for one second, then his tongue was twirling around the velvety hardness again.

Snape looked down at his himself then he watched his own erection disappear inside Harry’s mouth. “I must admit... oh gods... you look stunning... ahh... with my cock in your mouth.” He smirked. “Unfortunately now... mmm yeah... I can only imagine... fuck... how good you would look if it were in your ass.” He pressed out, grasping now both sides of the chair for stability.

Harry hummed deeply, appreciating the image, while his cock jerked vehemently as well. He smirked at Snape and the man bit his own lip, moaning wildly. He could feel his own orgasm building up in his lower side so he sped up a little, applying just a bit more force when shoving his fingers in and out of Snape’s tight ass. He sucked as hard as he could, his own fingers were grasping firmly around his cock while moving over and over the head.

“Oh fuck... Harry...” Snape whined his hands grabbing into Harry’s black mane, pulling him down on the hard erection. The brutal force in which Snape smashed up his hips the next time sent Harry over the edge and he spilled his seed onto his fingers again. He moaned wildly around the cock and the next second Severus’ whole body jerked beneath him and the man was shooting his semen down Harry’s throat, who couldn't help but groan keenly at the sensation.

Minutes ticked by, and Harry released the slowly softening cock, but kept licking the sensitive member lightly. Their panting echoed in the quiet kitchen. He pressed his forehead to Snape’s chest and breathed in the man’s scent deeply.

He smiled at the familiar smell of the ocean.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus, clothed but with his shirt still ripped, watched as Potter pulled up his zipper too. The awkwardness in the kitchen was so obvious, Severus found it almost fascinating. Therefore he did the only thing his instincts begged him to do. He stepped behind the other man and drew his arms around him.

Potter let out a long and shaky breath, and the tension left his system with the air. Severus kissed his nape and pressed his bare chest firmly to the lean back, enjoying the warm sensation.

“I think I know what you took from me.” Potter murmured softly, dropping his head back.

“And what would that be?” Severus asked caressing the other’s neck with his nose and lips. Potter sighed sensually at the contact.

“My virginity.” He sniggered then.

Severus snorted, biting lightly onto the soft skin over Potter’s shoulder. “I’m afraid, I won't be able to give that back.” He said apologetically as he kissed the bite marks away.

“Oh I don't want it back.” The Gryffindor murmured and Severus could hear he was smiling. “I just want to remember how it happened.”

Severus groaned almost inaudibly, slithering his hands on the other man’s body, caressing him calmly and languidly, while steering them unnoticed towards the counter.

“Well, Mister Potter, I’m sure you have some knowledge about how human anatomy works...” The young man grabbed into the edge of the counter as he whispered this. Severus felt like when they were dancing. Potter knew exactly what he was up to and moved in synchrony with him. “Or should I be giving you a lesson about full penetrative gay sex?”

Harry moaned softly. “You know I would like that. I would like that very much...”

“But you won't say yes.” Snape smirked into Potter’s neck as he started sliding against the other man slowly. “Because you want to solve our little mystery first.” His hands sneaked under Potter’s shirt and now were sliding on bare skin. “Which is very wise, Mister Potter. I must say you have grown up to be a wise man.”

“A wise man wouldn’t have let you come down his throat five minutes ago.” Potter laughed, leaning into the Slytherin’s touch.

“I said wise, not strong-minded.” Severus teased. “Besides, everyone has a weak point.”

“And mine would be your cock?” Harry grinned, pressing back.

Severus shrugged. “Maybe not so wise after all.” He could hear Potter’s soft laughter again, and it warmed his heart. “We need to get this sorted as soon as possible.”

“I know it’s not because you’re curious.” Potter smirked, one hand grabbing Severus’ hand and pulling it to his lips. He kissed the fingertips gently, then the middle of the palm. “You just want to be inside me, don't you?” He asked, as his teeth dashed into the soft flesh on his palm.

Severus sighed keenly into the other’s ear, before he bit into the edge of the shell. “Handsome, wise and clever. How are you still not engaged?”

“I think...” Potter whispered as he slithered their hands down onto the middle of his chest. “... I am already engaged.” He said softly, and Severus felt the ring under his touch.

 Severus hugged the other man closer to himself. “You think... that is the reason behind the rings?”

“Would you mind if it were?” Harry asked, his tone full of uncertainty.

Severus smiled, his heart almost bursting. “Not at all.” He said as he kissed Harry’s temple.

He let go of the other man and stepped away before the situation could get out of hand yet again. “Go now,” he advised. “You deal with the assassins, I need to do some research regarding our memory loss. The faster we solve this...”

“...the sooner you can be inside me?” Potter grinned wickedly.

“Indeed.” Severus smirked, walking past the other, giving a light slap on his firm ass.

 

o.O.o

 

“Hullo Hermione!” Harry shouted looking around for the woman in his best friends’ cosy living room. Suddenly a bushy mess of brown hair clouded his vision, strong arms hugged him and pressed a mug of something in his hands then pushed him down onto a settee.

“Sit and talk, mister!” Hermione ordered him, sitting down in her favourite armchair. “Come on! I want to know everything!”

It took Harry a second to comprehend what had just happened. He placed the mug, it was tea, on the small table between them and looked shyly up at the eagerly grinning woman.

“I came here to talk with-“ He started, eluding the answer.

“He’ll be here in about five minutes. Until then, talk. You went home with him, right?”

Hermione didn't have to clarify who she was talking about and Harry nodded mutely.

“Finally!” She exclaimed happily, fisting into the air. Harry had to smile when he realized that was something Ron used to do. “God Harry when you asked him to dance... I’m so proud of you!”

“Hermione, we’re-“ Harry started, smiling but she interrupted him.

“Don't deny it, Harry! Don't even try! Even the blind can see you had a crush on him for ages and after last night, there’s nothing you can say to convince me Severus isn’t into you just as much.”

“Hermione, stop, listen.” Harry laughed. “I’m in love with him!”

“Oh Harry!” Hermione beamed at him proudly but before Harry could explain in detail, Ron walked into the room.

“Hey mate, how did it go with Snape last night?” He asked immediately, sitting down on the armrest on Hermione’s chair. “Hello Sweetheart.” He murmured lovingly to the woman, kissing her softly.

“He’s in love.” Hermione sniggered.

“With the git?” Ron asked with a grin.

The other two nodded. “Ron, Hermione, there’s something I have to tell you...” Harry started but Ron suddenly roared like a wounded lion.

“Harry, how could you?” His best friend asked with irritation in his voice so obviously fake it hurt Harry’s ears. “You betrayed our long lasting friendship with this! How dare you! With the git, of all people!” He pressed his hands to his heart as if Harry had shot him and then crashed onto Hermione’s lap who started laughing.

“Oh Ron, it’s not your business who he is with!” She drawled sternly, clearly part of the play. Harry watched the two with amusement, close to laughing himself.

“But ‘Mione, it’s the git! My archenemy!” He twisted on Hermione, as if in agony before he went on with his speech. Harry was sure this was something they actually memorized some time earlier. “You must chose, mister! It’s him, or me.”

“Him. Definitely him.” Harry said without even hesitation.

“Did you hear the bloody bastard?” Ron looked at Hermione, finally stopping with the play for a second. “There wasn’t even a pause. Not even a minute of thinking about it.” His tone changed again, and went back to pretended anger and hurt. “He just shoved our everlasting friendship out the window! Oh woman, have you heard? This calls for retribution Mister, out with your wand!” Ron shouted with one arm gesturing in the air then added in a lower voice, “But not with the one you’re showing Snape, okay mate. I still want to have babies with the wife.”

Hermione laughed loudly then pushed Ron down on the ground with a jovial, “Oh you...”

Ron started giggling too, then looked at Harry from the ground. He sat up and leaned against Hermione’s legs. “Is this what you expected and that’s why you haven’t said a word all these years, or Hermione’s right and you really are so stupid as... well... me, and not noticed love when it’s right in front of you?”

Harry grinned, slightly embarrassed. “I didn't notice. But I’m not as stupid as you. Something didn't let me notice.” Harry said, taking his ring off and holding it towards his friends. “Do you remember this?”

They both nodded and Harry could feel how the atmosphere had turned suddenly serious.

“He has one too. His is gold with the silver motives, but the engraving is the same.”

“Harry what’s going on?” Hermione asked, leaning closer.

“I’m in love with him, and he’s in love with me, but this isn’t something new. We just couldn't feel it until now. Something didn't let us realize that we’ve been in love for ages. Ever since we’ve had these rings, probably. We suspect, that years ago, we were... well together. But then something happened and someone forced us to forget each other. That’s why we have the rings, they are clues for us to realize that we have to remember something. Maybe? We’re not sure yet.”

“Seriously though mate... even your love life has to be this complicated?” Ron sighed with a lopsided grin, giving him back the ring. Hermione slapped his head.

“Well, you were together during Hogwarts, that’s obvious, so I guess you might have been forced to forget because it was a student-teacher relationship?” Hermione offered but Harry shook his head.

“If that were the case, they would have just forced us apart and locked Snape in Azkaban. It has to be something else, something... worse...”

“Voldemort?” Ron asked.

“But how? If he realized what was going on he would have killed Snape before we could forget. Maybe he was close to figuring it out? I don't know. But that’s not why I’m here. He’s dealing with this and he’s... motivated enough to figure it out as soon as possible.”

Ron snorted. “What, you told him no sex until you remember?”

“Something like that.” Harry said, blushing as he could still taste Snape on his tongue.

“And how is that working out for you, mate?” Ron grinned, obviously noticing his redness.

“Not at all.” Harry confessed and Ron snorted.

“Kind of understandable, if you think about it.” Hermione chirped, deep red. “You probably... you know slept with him previously... I mean you two have matching rings and everything... I think your body would remember him sooner. Subconsciously. Or well... a part of your body.”

“Hermione!” Ron groaned.

“What? I’m just trying to help!” She said sheepishly. “Anyways, I guess, that’s why you have never felt attraction towards basically anyone. Because your body knew who it belonged to.”

“That would make sense...” Harry nodded.

“I don't know, Hermione,” Ron said in a teasing tone, “if I forgot about Snape, I would be happy. There are some seriously hot guys out there running after Harry and I’ll never understand why he’d choose the git, of all people...”

“Ronald Weasley!” Hermione shouted and Ron stood up quickly before Hermione could slap him again. “Are you telling me, that Severus doesn’t deserve to be loved because he’s not handsome?” She flared, her nostrils wide and Harry was suddenly reminded of McGonagall.

“That’s not what I said. I give you that, he looked pretty good yesterday for example. But there are more handsome blokes out there.”

“Oh, so if I wasn’t pretty anymore, you would stop loving me, Ronald? When I look like a whale because I’m having your child, will you not love me anymore?” She queried chin high, lips thin like razor and Harry was grateful for being homosexual and not having to deal with women but then reminded himself that a relationship with Severus Snape couldn't be that easy either. Though their arguments would probably not be about who was pretty...

“Hermione, of course I would love you. Blind and limping I wouldn’t care, I would keep loving you no matter what. Good and bad remember?” He beamed at his wife. “You’re the most beautiful person on this planet and I'm going to say that even when our hair will be grey and we are all wrinkled like my Aunt Muriel’s wart.”

Hermione laughed happily but Harry could see tears in her eyes.

“And besides, when you carry my child in there” Ron said pointing at Hermione’s stomach, “and your belly is huge like a melon, you will be more beautiful than now.”

“Well...” Hermione said, gulping. “I do hope you will remember what you said just now because... because in a month I will start swelling up like a balloon.”

Harry gasped, his eyes widened. He pressed his palm over his mouth and he couldn't stop grinning. Ron looked at him flabbergasted. “Is she saying what I think she’s saying?” He asked pale as a ghost.

“I think she is, Ron.” Harry affirmed.

“Hermione... are you pregnant?” He looked at his wife as if he was seeing her for the first time.

“Yes, you idiot, I am!” She cried, tears falling from her great brown eyes. “Two months...” She sniffled.

Ron sunk to his knees and hugged Hermione’s waist, pressing his red head to her still flat belly. “Oh ‘Mione! This is... oh Merlin, thank you!”

“This is wonderful!” Harry beamed at them, trying hard not to notice the happy tears leaking from his team leader’s eyes.

“Harry, you will be the godfather, right? I know you already have Teddy but...”

“Absolutely yes, Hermione! I would be offended if you didn't ask me.” He grinned at the woman.

“We’ve been trying for a while now,” Hermione said bashful, “but it just didn't happen. That’s what Severus offered help with. He knows about potions that could help and he wrote me a huge list about them with pros and cons for each and he even offered to  brew it for us, we just had to let him know when. He’s such an amazing person, Harry.”

“I know,” Harry answered proudly.

“He’s doing it for you, you know that right?” Hermione asked, her hands caressing Ron’s head that was still pressed to her belly.

“Yes, now I know.”

Ron shook his head and pressed a kiss to Hermione’s stomach then on her lips before he stood up. “Okay mate, let’s find out who wants to kill you this time. What was that name, Jugson?”

“Yeah,” Harry nodded standing up. “He’s a Death Eater. He was at the Department of Mysteries when we went there in our fifth year.” He pressed a kiss to her cheeks too before he looked at his two best friends. “I’m so happy for you guys. Congratulations!” He hugged Ron too, who still sniffed occasionally.

“Harry we better hurry up. I want to be home soon so we can celebrate.” He grinned teasingly and winked at his wife who blushed and started laughing.

“Go boys, and take care of each other.”

“We will, Sweetheart.”

“We will, Mom.”

Harry barely avoided the pillow that flew his way. Sniggering, they went to the Ministry. They had a Death Eater to find.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus apparated clutching the small slip of paper firmly into his hand. When the sickening feeling that accompanied reappearing somewhere after your body was scattered into atoms and pushed through a rubber tube vanished, he opened his eyes.

He was standing in the middle of a narrow path in a forest. The bright afternoon sunshine was glimmering through the thick cover of leaves, touching down to the ground like spears of light. He stepped forwards and a sudden wave shook the forest. He couldn't feel any wind, yet the leaves rattled on all the branches and birds took off as if someone just screamed a spell into the silence of the woods.

A dog howled in the distance, proof that he was in the right place.

Something was coming towards him now, clattering thought the trees, making the whole forest tremble. A small rabbit run past him, afraid of the threat that was approaching. The forceful wave of magic that burst out from the woods almost knocked him over. It was angry, loathsome, full of hate and Severus knew exactly who sent it.

The huge black dog seemed to have appeared out of nowhere viciously baring its sharp fangs at the man on the small pathway. Severus just sighed, rolling his eyes. The little wolf was more surprising, crawling out from between his dad’s tall legs. The wolf’s head was almost as big as one of the dog’s paws. He barked too, but happily, waved his fluffy tail madly then sprinted towards Severus. He turned back to human only a step before the man then wove his small arms around the guest’s leg.

“Seeus! Seeus!”

Severus smiled down at the small human. “Good day, Thaddeus.” He answered to the boy who didn't seem like letting his leg go any time soon.

“Daddy’s angry.” The boy grinned up at him. Severus tried to step away from the clutching hands, but as he did so, the boy came with him.

“Your daddy is not angry, boy,” Severus commented sneering bitterly, “he’s rabid.”

The huge dog snapped his dagger like teeth towards Severus then started snarling loudly and threateningly again. Teddy chuckled, while Severus almost snorted.

“Stop with the barking, Black,” Severus drawled with a disdaining look on his face. “It hurts my ears.”

Black turned into human again, but didn't stop with the growling. “Teddy, come here.”

“No.” The boy said simply and Severus laughed this time. The little minx reached up both his hands instead, obviously wanting to be on a higher ground. Severus looked at the father for a second before he took the boy up and made him sit on his hip. Teddy giggled mischievously at his father.

“I came to talk about Harry. I believe he forgot to mention, for your own safety I would imagine, that someone, once again, wants to use him as target practice.”

“And what concern is this to you, Snape? You’ve been happily hiding for the last five years. It would be a shame to abort this fine habit of yours. Go home, Snivellus.” Black spat turning half way around.

“It concerns me for two reasons. One is that I have some... business with Potter and he refuses to... deal with it as long as the threat exists. The second is that my home is presently overtaken by your godson. It seems, he has moved in with me.”

The gaping that followed made Severus sneer jovially.

“I’m going to kill that boy.” Black huffed before he turned around and motioned for Severus to follow him through the wards and into the depth of the forest.

Severus, carrying the young boy in his arms, walked after the other man, smirking. The small path suddenly run into a huge clearing, and as they stepped into the blinding sunshine the forest was nowhere.

“The Wolfden.” The boy announced proudly.

In the middle of the glade stood a small stone house, smoke slithering out of its chimney. The first thought that came to Severus upon seeing the cottage was homey. Remus was cutting wood near the house, swinging a huge axe in his arms. Severus was surprised to see the werewolf preferred pure strength instead of magic.

Teddy turned back into his wolf form and howled loudly to get his other father’s attention. Lupin looked up and when he saw their guest, he sat the axe into the piece of firewood he was working on and started running towards them.

“Severus,” He welcomed the man, holding a hand towards him. “What a nice surprise.”

They shook hands, both of them rolling their eyes at Black’s snort. “Remus, I need to talk to you both about the dangers concerning Harry.”

A small smile tugged on the werewolf’s scarred lips upon noticing Severus using Harry’s first name, but left the slip unmentioned. “Let’s sit down.” He motioned towards the wooden garden table behind the house.

They sat down and Severus let the small boy, still in wolf form, chew on his hands while he talked. “We were attacked last night. They went after him with the Killing Curse right away, it was sheer luck he survived.”

“Am I correct in assuming you had something to do with that sheer luck?” Remus smiled.

“I might have.” Severus shrugged, “however it was partly my fault that he did not realize we were under attack.”

“How so?” Black barked.

Severus smirked lightly. “I had his... attention focused elsewhere at that moment.”

“And where exactly was that elsewhere?” Sirius demanded.

“I could only guess,” Severus enunciated carefully choosing all his words, “but I would not further elaborate on that given we have a minor in our company.”

Black jumped up from the table with a sudden move, and Severus was sure if the child weren’t there, he would be already facing the man’s wand. Remus pressed a hand in front of his husband and murmured, “Get some coffee for us, Sirius.” When the other didn't move, beside his wild trembles of fury, he added, “Now,” and Black stormed inside immediately.

“You trained him well.” Severus grinned. “Oh how I missed this.”

Lupin shook his head. “You know, maybe your relationship would be better if you didn't constantly rile him up just to see him furious.”

“Watching your husband in a barely controlled fury is one of the few delightful events in my life that I can still enjoy.” Severus sighed. “Why would I voluntarily give up on that?”

Remus just laughed lightly. “So what can I do for you, Severus. You obviously didn't come here to tell us this. You could have just sent a letter, not to mention someone’s after Harry almost monthly. Unfortunately, it’s part of his job.”

“It’s a shame you have this... disadvantage of yours. The Ministry would do good with such an intelligent and observant person as yourself. Maybe if there were more sharp minded individuals among those idiots, we wouldn’t be still hunting runaway Death Eaters five years after Voldemort’s fall.”

The werewolf appreciatively bowed his head. “Thank you. With some help from Hermione, we’re working on it.”

“Let’s just hope she finishes with her mission before the baby comes. Watching this little minx here, after the baby is born, they won't have time for legislations.”

Remus leaned back. “I’m surprised. You know about her pregnancy. I thought even she hadn’t realized it yet.”

“Oh she knows. I believe she’s delivering the news sometimes today.” When he noticed that Lupin expected an explanation about why he knew before even the father did, he went on. “She owled me about five months ago, asking for information about potions that would help her be a mother. I provided the necessary data and offered my expertise. Last night she informed me that my help would not be needed.” Severus smiled. “I needn’t ask how you became informed.” He tapped the side of his nose.

Remus let out a barking laughter. “She has reeks of hormones for two months now. It makes me dizzy and... let’s say I crave things more often than usual when I’m around her.”

“Which brings me to the real reason of my unexpected visit.” Severus leaned back too.

“Please don't tell me you want me to sniff you.” Remus groaned. “Shaking your hand was enough to know you spent another night with Harry.” He raised an eyebrow but he didn't look condemning. “If I’m forced to spend more time closer to you, I might smell out things I really don't need to know of.”

Severus laughed. “I apologize. I had hoped my second shower washed away any... unnecessary information.” Severus looked down at the small boy before he asked, “Does he have some special...”

“Powers?” Lupin grinned wolfishly. “If you had asked me a week ago, I would have said, nothing special. His smelling is good, he can see well in the darkness, but that comes with his wolf form. But now... Please don't take this the wrong way, but he accepted you way too fast.”

“That’s exactly why I’m here.” Severus nodded.

“He’s knows Molly since he was born, yet he always needs time to drop his shyness. God even with Hermione and Ron he keeps a certain distance. You... well...”

“I’ve known him for two days and suddenly I’m Uncle Seeus.” Severus smirked, running his hands through the soft fur on the boy’s back. Teddy changed back and looked up at him, then at his father. His bright blue eyes sparkled in the afternoon sunshine.

“Indeed you are.” Lupin laughed again. “He’s only that welcoming and accepting towards...”

“Harry.” Severus finished. “I realized that too. And I think I know why. But before I can explain anything, I need to make sure and that is why I need Teddy. Well... his memories.”

Lupin cleared his throat and leaned forwards. “Severus, you know I trust your abilities, but we’re talking about my son now. I’m going to need more.”

Severus reached into his pocket. “Take a look at this. During the night I stayed at Grimmauld Place, I had to whisper a sentence into Harry’s ear. After that, your son saw something around us. Something we did not see. This is a drawing he made the next morning.”

“I have millions of mysterious drawing like this, Severus.”

“And how many of them portray you in wolf form, Lupin?” Severus asked back.

“That does not mean anything. We’re a fami-“

“How many? How many picture had he drawn with the big black dog and the green eyed wolf and with the other one, eyes bigger, human like and blue?”

“He’s a child, Severus, he draws what he wants to-“

“How many, Remus?” Severus demanded.

“At least twenty.” Lupin said quietly. “But he usually draws us all as humans; it’s easier.”

“Your son is clever. Cleverer than you think. He knows, but he doesn’t care, because you are his father.”

“You cannot know that.” Lupin hesitated.

Severus took a deep breath and looked down on the small child who watched their conversation intently. “Teddy, do you know what your daddy is scared of?”

“Big moons.” Said the boy and Severus noted from the corner of his eyes that Lupin’s chin dropped slightly.

“Do you know why?” Severus asked.

The boy shrugged. “Something bad happens to Moony Daddy when the big moon comes.”

“How do you know that, Teddy?” Lupin asked his son and the boy just shrugged again.

“Daddy feels different then. The big moon changes Daddy.” As the boy talked, Severus could see Lupin go paler and paler.

“And does that scare you?” Severus asked as the boy climbed onto the table.

“No!” The boy chuckled and started crawling towards Remus who watched his son with amazement. The child stopped a foot from his father and asked, slightly afraid. “Did Teddy do something bad?”

The man swept the boy into his arms and held him firmly as he murmured, “No, Teddy, absolutely not.” He kissed the boy on his forehead who giggled happily.

“He’s never been afraid of you, Remus.” Severus noted quietly. “It’s only you who’s scared of the wolf. Understandably.” He added as he stood up. He walked to the other two and pulled out his ring from under his shirt. “Teddy, is this motive familiar to you?”

The boy nodded then leaned his head on his father’s shoulder and watched Severus from there.

“Where did you see it?”

“Playground,” mumbled the boy then he added louder, “and bathroom.”

“Do you remember where it was exactly?” Remus asked his son.

“Uncle Hally was shining,” was the answer. “And Seeus too.”

The two adult exchanged a significant look, then Remus spoke again. “Teddy, remember when we played a game about who can stare at the other longer?”

The boy chuckled again. “Teddy won the game.” He answered proudly.

“Yes, exactly. Would you play that game with Uncle Seeus now? Look him in the eyes and don't look away, hm? Do you think you can win again?”

Severus kneeled down and took out his wand, before giving a grateful glance to the other man then he looked into the bright blue eyes.

“While we play this game, could you think about that time when we played Pass The Message in the bathroom?”

Teddy nodded confidently and Severus casted a nonverbal Legilimens.

Suddenly he saw himself and Potter sitting side by side at the bathtub. He leaned towards the other man, and they both closed their eyes. Potter’s hand held tightly the edge of the tub. He knew exactly when he whispered the three words into Harry’s ear because the young man tensed suddenly. Then his past self said it again, and he almost smiled as he noticed how Potter was smiling in the memory. Just for a second, a loving and affectionate smile spread over the other man’s lips. Then the smile was gone and pain took its place, and Severus remembered the burning ache in his mind; so that was why they had the headaches all the time. The barriers in their minds were cracking up.

The connection between him and Teddy almost broke when he saw the waves of magic that suddenly burst out from him and Potter. Gold and silver threads, the most beautiful sight that Severus had ever seen, emanated from their bodies and entwined with each other, twirled around thick cords, connecting and swirling madly. Teddy tried to touch it, but his small hand went right through the magical strings, that pulsed and glowed with life.

Severus tore his eyes from the boy and took a shaky breath, carding five fingers through his hair.

He couldn't help the smile that broke out over his lips, he actually felt like laughing. He took his ring and brushed it lovingly with a finger. Not fiancé, something much more important than that.

The door burst open and Black run outside with Minerva following him close by. Remus jumped up from the table and Severus stood up too, still slightly dizzy from the previous revelation.

“Harry’s been kidnapped!” Black shouted.

 

o.O.o.

 

Harry woke up in seeming darkness, lying on his back.

His head and his whole body hurt like hell, the pain made him wince and he suspected that was what had finally woken him from his unconsciousness. His glasses were askew, he wanted to fix them with his right hand but the second he moved it, a shot of unbearable ache shook his whole body.

Broken wrist. Great.

He used his left hand to adjust his glasses, then he slid his fingers over his face, searching for injuries. He had a deep cut over his left temple, he hissed as his fingertip run through the edge of the wound, but other than that, he found nothing on his head. He tried to sit up and this time he groaned loudly. He tried to take a deep breath to calm his ferociously beating heart. Definitely not a good idea. Very bad move that was actually as the previous pain repeated itself. He tried shallow breathing, which seemed to work a bit better.

Broken ribs. Wonderful.

His mind was still foggy so he used his hand to discover any other injury he might need to be careful about. He touched his ribs gently, but the pain was still great, someone must have kicked him, perfect. He felt a weird, warm sensation over his stomach so he slithered his left hand there. He breathed out slowly as he felt his shirt soaking in sticky wetness. He lifted the soggy fabric and cried out in discomfort. His hand ran over a gaping hole in the side of his stomach, which looked as if someone had slashed him open.

Bleeding stomach. Awesome.

He almost started fumbling around looking for his guts as he was sure he had left them somewhere on the way here. This thought propounded several questions.

On the way to where exactly? Where was he?

Who had put him in this state?

And why?

He searched his blank mind for the last of his memories as to figure out how he ended up in the darkness with so many broken bones and most likely without his entrails.

He was with Ron he remembered that. They were talking about the baby.

Ron was injured. They got him first.

Five attackers in black robes, right in front of the bloody Ministry. In broad daylight! Harry remembered them, but he never saw their faces, as they were covered by hoods during the whole attack.

Muggles went screaming, while Ron and Harry scattered the assassins with spells, shouting everything and anything that came to mind. Harry whined desperately when he finally clearly remembered the second when they shot Ron with a bottle green curse. His only hope was that he would recognize the Killing curse any time, and whatever hit Ron, it wasn’t that. But Ron went down with a painful yelp, which was concerning enough.

As he laid in the darkness he had to bite down on his left hand not to shout out in anger. If they killed Ron...

He panted, each breath like thousands of needles puncturing through his lungs.

After Ron was hurt, he remembered turning around to attack the one who sent that spell and he knocked the assailant out with a Stunning Spell but the next second someone tore at his right hand and twisted it. He remembered the instant, mind-blowing sting in his wrist and up in his arm, then he was pushed onto the ground.

There was laughter over him and pain, a million times worse than in his right arm, flared up in his stomach. The cold laughter died out when something collided with his chest. Several times.

Good thing was, now he knew how he got here. Nevertheless, he still had to figure out the why and who part.

He needed to stand up; he would be a way too easy target on the ground. Not that he was hard to kill otherwise; without his wand, he didn't have much chance against any wizard who wanted to kill him. But hopefully he still had some time. After all, if they wanted him dead, he would already be with Lily and James.

He turned to his side and crawled, trying his best to disregard the pain. He had to get out of here to see if Ron was still... If Ron was...

He found the wall. He leaned against it with his palm and started pushing himself up, while he held his broken wrist against the wound on his belly to keep inside what needed to be in there. Groaning wildly, he managed to stand up, and he almost fainted again from the sharp and thudding ache in his whole body. He forced his eyes open and thought of his two best friends. The thought that the baby might never see its father filled him with vicious rage.

Rage was good. It gave him power. He embraced the bloodlust, the need to avenge whatever happened to Ron. He took a deep breath, his lungs stretched against his wounded ribs, the pain almost made him cry out. But he remained in silence and pushed himself away from the slimy wall.

He looked around himself. The little shiny dots slowly dissipated from his vision and his eyes focused on his surroundings. It was dark, no windows were on the walls of his cell, only a heavy looking wooden door meant any exit.

His first idea was to apparate away. He turned on his heels but nothing happened other than he became dizzy again and almost fell over. Without a wand, there was nothing really he could do, though wandless magic was something he did on occasion, he doubted that in this state he could manage to do anything.

He pressed both his hands on his stomach, concentrating on healing up the open wound there. He felt a slight tingling there but nothing happened. He tried again, but this time, he attempted to heal his broken wrist instead. He murmured “Episkey,” and a surprised gasp left his mouth when his skin vibrated in a gold colour for a second, then the pain vanished.

He twirled his wrist around, and smiled when he didn't feel any discomfort.

With renewed self-confidence he pressed his hands back on the deep cut. He started mumbling a spell in a melodic voice, while remembering the man who first showed this spell to him. Dull golden light emanated from the cut, and Harry sensed that the bleeding stopped, however he suddenly felt knocked out again. He probably should wait with any more wandless self-healing.

He leaned back against the wall and closed his eyes. He tried to calm himself, while his senses were sharpened to take notice of any change that happened in his surroundings.

Several minutes later, or it could have been even an hour he heard footsteps from the other side of the entrance. As quietly as he could, he walked to the door, which would open to the outside. He grinned as he heard mumbled voices, then someone turned a key in the lock. The door opened slightly, and the second he saw a hand holding a wand, he kicked into the door with as much power as he could gather, while he grasped the end of the wand.

The door banged against the person who held the wand and probably knocked them out, as the hand fell towards the ground. Harry twisted the rod slightly and was actually surprised that his plan worked, when it slipped out from its owner’s fingers.

His previous owner, Harry reminded himself, with an evil grin. He was still the Master of The Deathly Hallows, and he was sure these people had no idea who they had kidnapped.

The door banged open and people flooded the room. Suddenly he found himself facing six wands.

He was wrong. Looked like, these people knew exactly who they stood up against.

Harry attacked without any warning sign, his duelling etiquette forgotten long ago, probably when he saw his best friend fall to the ground. Non-verbal spells flew out of the tip of his wand, yes, it was his now, working with him almost as perfectly as his own with Fawkes’ feather in it.

His captors cried and shouted, someone yelled, “Get the fucking wand away from him!” Harry grinned and knocked that one down immediately with a silent Stupefy.

Someone tackled him while crashing one stone hard elbow onto his already fractured ribs. Harry howled from the pain and collapsed, the wand rolling away from his hands. Someone picked it up, before he could reach it, though he tried.

He slowly looked up at the person, who held his second wand, taking in the muddy boots, the leather pants, the black robes, and the dark red jacket with a sign Harry would recognize any time: a blade and a wand crossed. The person lowered his hood.

Harry exhaled slowly as he looked at the man before him. “Hey boss. I guess you’re not here to rescue me...” His tone dripped of sarcasm.

“Potter, I can assure you, rescuing is the last thing I want to do.” Head Auror Robards answered, motioning to one of his henchman from the three that were still standing. The guy kicked into Harry again, this time, aiming at his kidney.

“Fucking hell...” Harry grunted. “You know, sir, I’m aware that you appreciate my hard work and everything but if you want me to have some rest, just say so. No need to beat the shit out of me.” Sheer hatred poisoned his evil grin.

“Where’s the fun in that, Potter?” Robards laughed, pushing Harry onto his back with his boot, which then moved onto Harry’s throat and thrust down with firm pressure.

Harry, even after years, was a brash Gryffindor, and that never changed. So, without thinking, he grabbed the boot on his throat and twisted it wildly around, before pushing it away, sending his superior against the nearest wall. The henchman at his side kicked again, and Harry had to cough suddenly. He spat some blood on the ground but smirked at the Head Auror. “I hope it doesn’t hurt too much.” He said sweetly, the metallic flavour in his mouth sending his stomach into a sickening lurch.

The man snapped out his wand and pointed it at his broken ankle. After fixing his injury, he stepped closer to Harry.

“You can't, Robards.” Warned him the man whose foot Harry knew too well. “Jugson won't-“

“I don't give a rats ass about Jugson, you idiot.” The man cried out, his face contorted. “Crucio!” He shouted and Harry felt a sudden torturous pain flare up in every nerve ending in his body. His mind was screaming for a second then it was all over as suddenly as it came.

When he opened his eyes he saw that Robards was being withheld by the third man in the small cell. “We still need him, you asshole!” He shouted.

Harry just laughed, “That? That was all you could manage? You need to want it, Robards! You need to want to inflict pain for the Crucio to work!” Harry laughed madly, as he suddenly remembered how it felt to receive the Torture Spell from Tom Riddle himself. “Give me a wand, Robards, and I can show you how it’s done!”

“Crucio!” The man screamed now furiously, exactly what Harry wanted. He rolled away fast and avoided the spell and the kicking feet too. He stood up quickly and smashed his elbow into Robards’s face, then he sunk his bony knee into the other’s guts. When the man pulled himself into a knot from the pain, Harry grabbed his head and introduced the older person’s ugly face to his knee too. The man fell to the ground like a bag of dragon faeces. “Asshole...” he grunted, spitting on the man but he didn't have time to relax.

The other assailant tried to attack Harry, this time however he made the mistake of not using his wand only his hands. Harry all but grinned at him, ducked away from an incoming fist, then grasped the side of the man’s head and smashed it into the iron doorframe. He turned around ready to fight the third one, eager to sink his feet onto the man’s face.

“I’m not an idiot.” The man said slowly several feet away from Harry, holding his wand. “Incarcerous.”

With that, Harry found himself bound, his hands behind his back before he could snatch up a wand. Even his feet were tied together firmly, so he fell over. Wriggling on the dirty ground he could hear other approaching footsteps. Three other men run inside the cell, all with wand at the ready, and hoods on their head, so Harry had no chance realizing whom these people were.

“What the fuck were you doing in here?” The first man who stepped in shouted with deep voice.

“He tried to escape.” Came the answer.

“And what, you let him? Idiots!” The man marched to the other and slapped him across his face. “You’re a disgrace. You let him alone knock out four of you? Pathetic gang of cretins.” The man mumbled and Harry suspected he had just met the brain behind the team of his kidnappers.

“Want to see if you’re any better than your men?“ Harry grunted angrily. “Give me a wand and let’s do this like grownups, hm?”

The man laughed. “Of course, why don't I give a wand to the famous Harry Potter. These idiots might have forgotten who you are Potter, but I remember you very well.”

“Then I think an introduction should be in order, because I have no fucking idea who you are.” Harry suggested.

“I’m offended, Mr. Potter.” The man said, squatting next to Harry. He pulled his hood back, revealing a scarred face Harry instantly remembered, however when he had seen it almost seven years ago, it wasn’t this damaged.

“Jugson.” He uttered the name as if it was something slimy and disgusting.

“So you do remember.” Jugson smiled but his curving lips only promised pain and suffering not happiness.

“I tend to memorize those people’s faces who want to kill me and my friends.” Harry grinned back but there was no humour in his predatory smile either. “And say, Jugson, how was Azkaban? I see you managed to get yourself some... permanent souvenirs from there.” Harry prodded his head towards the man.

Jugson draw a dirty finger above the deep scar that run over his features from his left temple through his left eyebrow, over the small but wide nose and ended next to the edge of his thick lips. He let out a hearty chuckle. “Severus always described you as an impertinent brat, now I see he was always right about you.”

The blood froze in Harry’s veins even by the mention of Severus. “What can I say; even the old git had his moments.”

Jugson laughed again, and Harry didn't like the sound of it. “That’s not nice, Mr. Potter.”

“Then let me go, so I can apologize to him. Even better, you should come with me, I think he would be happy to see some old faces... Even scarred ones.” He added after a moment.

Jugson slapped him so hard, he almost broke out Harry’s canine. “You don't need to go anywhere, Mr. Potter. You can apologize to your lover when he arrives here.”

“My what? You’re mad!” Harry barked laughing even though he could barely breathe from the coldness that was spreading in his chest.

“You heard me perfectly, Mr. Potter.” The man smiled again, though it seemed more of a snarl now to Harry. “Denying it is absolutely futile.”

“Snape’s not my lover.” Harry said disdainfully. It was technically true. He wasn’t yet. Or anymore. Depending how one looked at their situation.

“I couldn't care less about the exact status he holds in your heart, Mr. Potter.” The Death Eater stood up. “C’mon boys, let’s get the others out of here.”

Harry watched as the hooded figures pulled out their colleagues from the cell. Jugson was the last one to step outside but before he did, Harry shouted after him. “What do you want from me?”

“From you, Mr. Potter?” Jugson grinned evilly again as he leaned against the doorframe, twirling his wand between his short fingers. “I want you to suffer. I want you feel pain. You deserve it.”

“What are you waiting for then?” He tensed against his ropes. “I’m wandless and tied up. Are you such a coward you still don't dare attack me?”

“So young... so eager!” Jugson groaned and his voice had some yearning undertone. “How much I’d like to break you, Mr. Potter. To finally do what even the Dark Lord has failed to accomplish and see your famous confidence in pieces, shattered.”

“I’m here, Jugson, and I can't run away.” Harry hissed. “C’mon, I know you want it.”

The Death Eater stepped closer to Harry but cleverly stayed out of reach. He grabbed Harry’s chin and pulled him up and a bit closer to himself. “You always think so high about yourself, Mr. Potter. Severus always said you think the world revolves around you.” Jugson whispered, his voice steady and cruel, terrifying Harry deep inside. “You’re not the main dish here, Mr. Potter. You’re just... the bait.”

Harry’s eyes widened. “But the letter...! The attack...!”

“Tell me, Mr. Potter, have you found any name regarding whose death I was detailing on that letter I delivered to your house?” The other man smirked when Harry couldn't do anything else just gasp. “Exactly, Mr. Potter, there wasn’t. Severus was impossible to reach up until three days ago. I had to live with the opportunity that arose. I assumed he would stick around just to make sure his precious boy remained unharmed. And the attack... well, you were standing so close... If he had kept his eyes closed just a second longer, we wouldn’t be having this conversion now.”

“No!” Harry snarled and spat some blood in the man’s scarred face. “Never!”

“Yes, Mr. Potter.” Jugson smirked and leaned to Harry’s ears as he whispered in a deadly voice. “I will kill Severus Snape. I will finally kill the one who betrayed my Lord.”

“Over my dead body!” Harry shouted with fuming anger.

“Oh, I’m sure we can achieve that somehow.” Jugson laughed. He stood up and wiped down the blood with his thumb. He licked it before he smashed his heavy booted foot onto Harry’s face sending the young man into unconsciousness.

 

o.O.o

 

The uncontrolled pulse of powerful magic that burst out of Severus surprised everyone.

“What do you mean kidnapped?” He snarled at Black as if he had been the attacker.

“Calm down now, Severus.” Minerva spoke in a soft voice, putting a gentle hand on his arm. The touch had no effect on his burning rage.

“What happened?” Remus asked from next to him. The werewolf seemed calm but Severus could feel the repressed shaking of his body.

“He and Mr. Weasley were ambushed in front the Ministry. We don't exactly know what happened or who took him. Mr. Weasley is currently in St. Mungo’s and still unconscious. The Aurors found this.” Minerva pulled out something from her pocket and showed it to Severus who immediately let out a shocked gasp.

“No...” Lupin mumbled seeing Harry’s wand in the Headmistress’ hand. They both knew what this meant; Harry was unarmed and defenceless.

“There was a note too.” Minerva added. “There was no sender or addressee, nothing that would indicate where it came from or whom it was meant to. The Aurors are checking it for any magical trace that would help find out where they are holding him.”

“What did the letter say, Minerva?” Severus demanded in a cold voice.

She took a deep breath. “Look Severus, I know what you will think but-“

“What did it say?!” Severus shouted.

Come out and play, Snitch.” Minerva all but whispered but everyone could hear her.

Severus let out a strangled whimper. Whoever kidnapped Harry wanted him and not the young man. Harry Potter was in mortal danger again and it was all because of him. Again.

“Severus, you cannot be sure-“

“I told you it would not end well if we met again.” Severus murmured broken. He started pacing, his black robe flaring behind him with every turn.

“Severus, this isn’t-“ Remus started but Black interrupted him.

“My godson was kidnapped because of you!” Black snarled. “Why is it that everywhere you go, death follows you like a loyal companion? You’re like a sickness, Snape, and now my family is in danger because of you!” Remus tried to stop him, but Black shook off the gentle touch. Severus didn't feel like arguing or stopping Black. The man was absolutely right. “No Remus, I had enough! Everything what happened to James and Lily, everything was his fault!”

“Now you stop this nonsense right away, Sirius Black!” Minerva shouted and suddenly all three of them felt like misbehaving schoolboys. “How dare you say that, Sirius!? He has done nothing in the past twenty years other atoning for one single mistake! Do not forget who betrayed them, Sirius! Peter was your friend too. And the switch was your idea! Severus cares for Harry just as much as you or I, if not more! Lily and James are dead because of one person and that is Tom Riddle, not Peter, not you and definitely not Severus. You better realize that as soon as possible, young man, because we have a much bigger problem than sorting out blame for what had happened many years ago.”

There was silence around them, Black obviously wasn’t willing to go against Minerva, he respected her just too much, even after all these years, she was still his Head of House.

An unearthly sound broke through their quietness and Severus recognized it right away. Everyone looked up at the cloudy sky in search for the beautiful, encouraging tone, but no one could see the source.

Severus could feel the uplifting song fill his heart with courage. He knew who was singing it and he also knew why. He grabbed Harry’s wand and started running. His heart drummed ferociously in his chest, each beat echoing in his every cell, resonating with Fawkes’s elevating music. He ran as fast as he could in a straight line across the field. The phoenix’s music was becoming louder and louder until it stifled even the sound of his boots colliding with the ground.

The setting sun drew his shadow on the grass as lean and tall darkness. His billowing robes were flying behind him like a constantly changing cloud of anger. Black silhouette of wings appeared around his figure and for a second it seemed as if the wings belonged to his own shadow. Fawkes was descending in a fast dive and soon the dark wings detached themselves from Severus’ shade.

Severus ran faster than ever, his heartbeat throbbed in his head, while the song became almost deafening above him. He leaped onto a long, fallen trunk and run up it. Fawkes shrieked the second Severus reached the end and he jumped up in the sky with his right hand stretched out. Fawkes’ warm, clawed legs grasped tightly around his wrist and they disappeared in a flare of black robes and carmine red wings.

Chapter Text

Severus landed in a dark place, crouching on one knee ready to jump up if needed, his wand drawn, eager to cast horrible spells on anyone who dared attack him. Unfortunately, no one was around him, only Fawkes chirped quietly next to him. He stood up dusting his clothes, then listened to the quietness around them.

He didn't hear anything that would indicate where he was or where he would find Harry. Looking around he saw empty, undecorated walls and dirty floor. The emergency lamps over his head filled the corridor with ominous red light. Not a window was in sight and the air was heavy and old so he concluded he must be somewhere underground. A dreadful feeling concerning Potter crept forward in his mind, but he brushed it away. He needed to focus on the task ahead.

Find Potter. Get him out of here. He had no doubt that was why he was brought here. The only question remained was why wasn’t he in Potter’s cell. If the young man was able to summon Fawkes, the bird should have been able to go right at his side. Severus wasn’t willing to dwell on how exactly did Potter prove his loyalty to Severus.

He stepped slightly forward, keeping his wand straight ahead. He felt slight tingling in the tip of his fingers and as he approached a door at the end of the hallway, the prickling feeling branched across his whole body. The itchiness was uncomfortable and alarming. It caused goose bumps on his arms and back. He edged closer but it was harder and harder. He felt like he should go.

A thought appeared in his mind and told him that he should turn around and run. A few more steps later, the thought changed and he knew mortal danger was ahead. His self-preservation was screaming at him to leave that door as soon as possible, to go as far as he could. Severus smirked.

“As if this could hold me back.” He murmured then he realized he was actually invited here. They wanted him here. He looked at Fawkes and asked in a low voice, “Even if he’s warded against wizards and witches, you alone must be able to go straight to him from here, right?”

Fawkes chirped reassuringly and Severus squatted next to the bird. “If we proceed through this door, you will not be able to come back to me or apparate out from there. You will be stuck there with them and us. At least until you do not find your way back to this side of the door or the wards will cease to exist. If you want to turn around go now. Bring here the others. But I need to go in there without any further delay.”

The phoenix sang in an angry tone, which made Severus realize that Fawkes wanted to find Potter as much as Severus did and was willing to risk more for that quest than feathers and blood. The bird nibbled on his hand with his sharp beak, and Severus smiled down at him.

“Why do I have the feeling that this is the moment why you stayed by my side all this time?” he asked the bird quietly, who responded with sad tweets. Severus stroked the feathers on the soft head, gathering some more courage from the eternal warmness that radiated from the animal. “Be careful, you hear me? I... grew accustomed to your presence and irritating cheeping all the time.”

Fawkes chirped happily, however for years now, there wasn’t anything irritating in it. It sounded heart warming and loving.

“Go to him. Take his wand with you. I am sure, he is useless without it.” Severus smiled softly but it disappeared almost right away. “Guide him back to me.”

He looked into the yellow eyes, which glowed with understanding. “I know I cannot ask you this but please... please protect him no matter what the cost.”

Fawkes brushed his head to Severus neck and sang a short comforting tune before he hopped into the air, his wings spread out, glowing in the dim corridor. “Be careful! Be very, very careful!” Severus asked him before Fawkes vanished in a flare of fire, leaving behind a single red feather. Severus caught it in the air.

“Take care, Fawkes.” He whispered and hid the feather inside his robes, then turned towards the door.

Shaking off the feeling of imminent death, he pushed down the handle and opened the door. The second he stepped over the threshold the weird sensation was gone. He was inside the wards. The only question was if people knew he had arrived.

He received an answer when he moved a few steps ahead. A loud alarm sounded up, so loud, it made his ears hurt. It couldn't have been signalling for longer than ten seconds when it was abruptly stopped but its harsh noise echoed in Severus’ ear for quite some time. He rushed in cover behind some crates and took a second to observe where he was.

The room seemed like a vast, underground warehouse, filled with boxes and iron handles and bars that were no doubt muggle contraptions. The light here wasn’t any better, as the lamps on the walls were covered in thick dirt. He stayed in the shadows, keeping an eye on the two doors he spotted in front of him, and the third one behind him. No one came running towards him, no door burst open so he carefully moved forward amongst the long deserted, dusty crates.

As he edged along the wall, he saw more and more doors and corridors leading to other rooms. He became anxious. Just how big was this place? He tried to look for any sign but soon realized that no matter how hard he look for it, he would not find one that said: “To free the Dunderhead Auror, this way please”.

He looked behind him, making sure that the door was still closed, when he noticed his own footprints in the dust that covered every surface. He damned his own stupidity but in the meantime, he had an idea. He quickly looked around for another disturbance in the grime. Keeping his head down, his sharp eyes searched for a footprint or any mark.

He found what he was looking for in less than five minutes. He thought about going back and making his footprints disappear but then reminded himself that his presence was already known and most likely if these people were stupid enough to let their marks everywhere on the ground, then they would probably not think about following any footprint.

He also reminded himself that he was expected and this might be a trap. He followed the tracks anyway.

Soon he found himself on another dark corridor. The marks in the dust didn't stop for a while and lead him to another door. Before he opened it, he listened carefully, whether he could hear anything from the other side.

There was silence for a while and he placed his hand on the handle. At that second, someone started yelling inside.

Severus, sure that he was compromised already, moved away from the door and hid in a small alcove between two thick tubes running parallel with the wall. Maybe he could still have a small element of surprise if he attacked hidden. The door meanwhile was pulled open and someone came out, still shouting.

“If you idiots mess this up one more time, I will make sure a proper Auror will find you, do you hear me?!” A man in the door shouted.

Severus inhaled relieved and silent, staying in his cover. Two faint yeses sounded from the room.

“I did not hear that!” The man thundered and the next time the affirmations were much more audible. The door was smashed closed and footsteps echoed in the dark hallway as the mysterious stranger moved further away. Severus waited quietly for a few seconds then moved back in front of the door.

This time he pushed down the handle and burst in the room, wand first. He was fast like a snake as he stunned one man who had his back on him. He turned towards the other that should be in there too and found him soon enough.

He was in front of the man with quick strides then the next second, the tip of his wand pressed into the man’s neck. “Auror Robard, if I remember correctly.” He growled with disgust. While having the panting man at wandpoint, he searched the black robes and red jacket hastily for the man’s wand. He found it in the holster around the man’s left arm. He pulled it out and broke it with an evil smile. The thin rod fractured with a wicked snap. “You are hereby discharged from the Auror forces.”

Robard was too scared to even move. He took a shaky breath, clearly furious about the demise of his wand, however he didn't dare go against the equally furious Severus Snape.

“And now, we are going to have a bit of a chat, Mr. Robard.” Severus uttered with clear malice in his voice and stepped away. “Do explain me why you would like to kill me.”

Robard, bless his soul, didn't say a word. He was an idiot, but he was a loyal idiot it seemed. Severus however wasn’t in a patient mood nowadays. He was, once again, in front of the Auror before the other could even blink, his fist colliding with soft cartilage.

The nasty crack sounded clearly in the room and Robard cried painfully, nursing his bleeding nose. “You arsehole...” He mumbled between gritted teeth then he jumped towards his stunned fellow, clearly in high hopes that he could obtain his wand.

Severus let him do it. He watched with almost pleasure as the man landed painfully on his shoulder, dripping blood all over the place. Short fingers clasped around a light brown wand and Robard stood up with a victorious, “Aha!”

Snape disarmed him with a soft chuckle, catching the wand that dashed towards him with an elegant move. He broke that too and dropped the two small pieces on the ground. “Thank you.” He nodded gratefully towards the fuming man. “I see you are willing to cooperate.” He smirked.

Robard launched forward to come at Severus with his bare hands but Snape sent him flying back against the wall with a quick charm. “Do not fool yourself into thinking there is an alternative to this situation where you manage to overcome me and walk out of here.” He informed the man. “The endgame is set. I will find out what I want to know and you will end up unconscious as your fellow partner. The only question is how much pain I will inflict on you before that happens.”

Severus gave a man a few seconds to understand the reality of the situation before he asked again, “Why do you want to kill me? I imagine, it is not a coincidence that I run into you at a wedding and the next second a Death Eater is after me. Not to mention, no one hates Harry Potter openly. Insufferable he might be, showing negativity against the Saviour of the Wizarding World is simply foolish, idiotic and pointless, not to mention it draws too much attention. Believe me, I’ve been there.”

“I won’t tell you anything.” Robard spat hatefully.

“You are telling me many things even with your silence.” Severus smiled. “Given your affiliation with Jugson, I assume you have been on Voldemort’s side, though I do not remember you.” There was a slight wince when Severus said the name. “Or... your reasons have nothing to do with Voldemort.” He stopped thinking for a moment. “No, your reasons are simple. You want Harry Potter gone. You still hold a grudge against him, do you not? Did your colleagues laugh at you when coming to my arrest a mere child knocked you out at St. Mungo’s? Surely they did. I would have.” Severus let his lips pull up into a mocking grin.

“That little shit! We weren’t allowed to hurt him! That’s the only reason he... that he...”

“That he singlehandedly won a fight against you lot?” Severus finished for the man who became slightly purple with anger. “I was unconscious at the moment yet I’m quiet convinced there’s nothing you could have done against him even with putting your best effort to your goal. Look at yourself you pathetic moron, you needed a Death Eater to carry out your plan. Or more likely, to come up with a plan for you.”

Robard started shouting angrily to soften the force of his humiliation. “I caught Jugson! I did it! I  caught him!” He cried with pride. “But I didn't arrest him. It was very clear he hated Potter for killing His Lord. Finally, I found someone who shared my interest. I let him go and we agreed to kill him. Weeks after the war, Potter was never alone and we couldn't do anything. Later on, we found out about your role in his victory. Jugson became insanely obsessed with you after that. He didn't care about Potter anymore, he was thirsty for your blood. We agreed to help each other. I needed his men to carry out my plan, and he needed Potter to catch you. Everyone knew you almost died protecting him, he was sure you would do the same again. And you’re here! He was right!”

“You must be quite patient if you were able to hold back all this hatred for five years.” Severus sighed. “I imagine with you gone, Harry will enjoy being an Auror much more. He will probably get your post the second this story will hit the Daily Prophet.”

“That little shit will never get out of here alive!” Robard snarled.

“And that brings us to our next question. Where is he kept?” Severus queried his tone clam however he was seething inside. The only reason this pest here wasn’t under the Cruciatus Curse was because Severus remembered the disgust in Harry’s voice when he talked about torture being allowed for questioning in the Auror Forces. Using the same technique seemed like betrayal of his respect for the young man.

“I won’t tell you.” Robard smirked but the gesture was gone when Severus stepped closer to him.

“You do not need to speak.” Severus said quietly and looked into the brown eyes. His Legillimence was casted unnoticed but when he was inside he made sure that Robard knew what was happening to him. The man’s effort to close him out of his head was so feeble it was offensive to label it as an attempt. He was definitely worse than the fifteen-year-old Potter, who at least had a small aptitude to fight back against the penetration. This man’s brain was so weak, Severus felt disgusted as he looked around for information.

Then it was over and Severus wanted to wash his mind.

“You-“ Robard shouted spitting saliva but as Severus didn't need him anymore, he stunned the man right away.

He stepped out of the door and made sure to lock it before he started walking towards Harry’s cell. He knew if someone found Robard here, they could bring him back to consciousness in a second. Moreover, given the wands Voldemort confiscated years ago from Ollivander when kidnapping the wandmaker had never been found, Severus suspected that breaking those rods were useless as well. Nevertheless, this might slow them down and hopefully make their spells less effective. And the only way to make Robard permanently unavailable to continuously help Jugson with his plan was murder, something Severus outright denied to do. Even with a scum like Robard.

 He walked for about ten minutes getting deeper and deeper into the building. He remained as quiet as possible and as alert as if he would be dealing with Voldemort.

Hence, he was very surprised when suddenly he found himself at wandpoint.

“Well, hello there, Severus.” Jugson smirked.

 

o.O.o.

 

Harry heard a tune that could only be described as angelic. He panicked right away. He cannot be dead. Not now. Not when things were finally getting better. The beautiful music soared through his soul, warming his heart, bringing him courage. The sound seemed vaguely familiar but he couldn't place it anywhere.

Suddenly he felt something heavy on his chest then his stomach became warmer. He suspected that his wound must have been infected and now he was dying. That would certainly explain the angels, the warmness and the breathing problem as well. What it wouldn’t explain was the pain that he seemed to feel more and more. Shouldn’t dying be about not existing? Or was he doomed to carry this ache even to his afterlife? If that was the case, he decided rather to stay on as a ghost. He was sure Nearly Headless Nick would have talked about still feeling the pain caused by the blunt axe. As a ghost, he could maybe still meet Severus, or go back to Hogwarts.

The pain was getting worse and the darkness turned into redness. What the hell was going on with him? He heard a lot about afterlife but a red blotch was never mentioned. Then he saw yellow eyes and his heart missed a beat.

“Don't look into the yellow eyes.” He murmured to himself, and the fact that he could talk meant he wasn’t dead. The singing continued. The weight moved from his chest and he breathed deeply, inhaling mouldy ground.

As his mind cleared with every breath and the pain was also decreasing second by second. Something soft tickled his ear and he lifted his hand there, brushing the feathers away.

Something was definitely off. A basilisk didn't have feathers. Moreover he already looked into the yellow eyes, so he should be stone already. He moved his hand again just to see if he could do it. There was no problem, his fingers slid over his face and into his hair with the usual smoothness.

The singing stopped and something chirped next to him.

“Fawkes!” Harry cried smacking his own head in revelation and tried to sit up. Torturous pain slashed into his head and he fell back right away. Groaning he opened his eyes. The phoenix’ bright yellow eyes twinkled over him warmly.

“Oh no! Oh nooo! No, no, no, no, no! You have to get away from here!” Harry urged the bird who tweeted reproachfully, then nibbled on his finger. Harry was sure Fawkes didn't expect this kind of welcome and overall lack of gratefulness for his presence but that did not change the fact that the animal should not be here because that meant only one thing.

Severus was here too.

As a verification that he was on the right track, suddenly an alarm sounded up in the distance. Its sharp sound made Harry cringe, his headache returning. He started chanting “no” again as if the two letters could make Severus go away.

Obviously that was impossible, however after some time the alarm stopped and the only thing Harry could hope for was that somehow Severus managed to elude the attackers. He tried to avoid thinking about the worst case scenario as that would most likely paralyze him. 

“This is one brilliant rescue mission.” He noted to the bird, sitting up. “We can’t get out of here and he’s probably captured. I don't have my-“ Before he could finish Fawkes lifted one of his legs and between the sharp claws there was Harry’s beloved wand, intact.

Harry smirked and stood up. “Oh, now that we have this, we might have a chance.” He looked down on his body and assessed his injuries. Thanks to Fawkes, now he only had as many holes as necessary.  He was still covered in blood; he could feel some even dried on his face but he wasn’t bleeding anymore. His broken ribs seemed better too, but as he still felt some sting there, he casted a silent Healing Charm.

The pain was gone right away. He smiled down at Fawkes. “I do appreciate your help, you know that, right?” He said in a low tone. “I’m just scared what they will do to him.”

Fawkes let out a few encouraging tones then turned his beautiful head towards the door. Harry listened too. Someone was approaching.

“Let’s show these morons what we can do, hm?” The young man smiled broadly and motioned for Fawkes to move to the corner. He stepped to the other side of the door and waited for it to be opened.

Key rattled in the hole, someone mumbled an incantation and the door slowly creaked open. Harry was sure whoever was on the other side, they were expecting him to act as the last time, kicking the door. So instead, he waited until a tentative hand appeared and started moving inch by inch inside.

“He’s not here.” The man at the door whispered.

“That’s impossible.” A second voice said. “Snape couldn't get here in this short time. He’s in there.” Harry let out a content sigh at that. They didn't get to Severus yet then. He grabbed the hand and pulled the man inside.

“Oh I’m in here all right.” He stunned the fellow and turned to the other right away. The man stood there who kicked him several occasions the last time. “I am going to enjoy this.”

The man sent a spell towards Harry, who dodged it and reacted with his trademark Expelliarmus. The spell hit its target and a wand came flying towards the young man. He caught it with his left.

“I could spell you into stone and unconscious in a second.” Harry spoke softly, raising the wand in his hands. His tone was dark and threatening and it reminded him of Severus. “But I won’t because I think we have some unsolved business.” He turned his head slightly towards the bird. “Fawkes, take care of these.”

He threw the wands into the air, knowing that the phoenix would catch them before his attacker could even move. The man’s eyes followed their path though and Harry used the distraction to attack. As an Auror, he was usually able to see past petty revenge on something like a few kicks but this turned personal when they used him to direct Snape here. And there was nothing sweeter than kicking the person who had threatened your loved one right in the middle of his ugly face.

Harry kicked as hard as he could, his boot covered feet clashed to strong jaw with a thud and the man fell to the iron frame of the door, the second collision sending him somewhere less painful. Harry dragged the man’s lifeless body into the cell, then looking around he stepped out to the dim hallway. Fawkes was circling over his head, keeping an eye out. Harry closed the door behind him and looked up at the bird.

“Which way?”

Fawkes dropped down both of the wands. Harry pocketed one and kept his phoenix wand in hand. Then the bird started flying to the right and Harry obediently followed. He was sure Fawkes was bonded to Snape, which meant he would be able to find him anywhere.

They roamed the corridors turning left then right, then two times left and Harry was feeling more and more anxious that they did not meet anyone. Neither enemy nor ally could be seen anywhere. He was sure he didn't injured Jugson’s each and every man so where the hell were they?

Suddenly, Fawkes tweeted almost painfully and started flying faster. Harry, throwing caution to the wind, followed the bird running. He heard nothing, saw only the dim, dirty corridor filled with dark shadows to where the faint yellow light didn't reach.

He ran and ran it seemed like for eternity. When Fawkes slowed down, he did too, forcing his feet to hit the ground as silently as possible. He heard voices from behind the next corner, then cold laughing. He clung to the wall, listening to the murmurs hoping that he could find out how many people were talking.

“I honestly didn't expect it would be this easy.” A man said and Harry recognized the voice as Jugson’s. “Are you really the person they say you are, Severus?”

Harry’s heart missed a beat.

“I could not know.” Severus answered his tone sounding bored but Harry could detect the alarm in it. “Which characteristics are you referring to?”

“They say you are a hero. Selfless, magnanimous, valiant.” Jugson drawled tauntingly.

Severus snorted, Harry almost joined him. “I am afraid you mistook me with someone else, Jugson. Mister Potter would be my guess as those words are typically used to describe him.”

“So are you saying that you did not actually switch your alliance when the Potters died? Are you telling me that it is not your fault that our Lord is dead?”

“I can assure you, Jugson, Voldemort’s death is not my merit. That was all Harry Potter, as I heard.”

“IT WAS YOUR BETRAYAL THAT CAUSED IT! IT WAS YOUR HELP NOT SOME CHILD’S MAGIC!” Jugson thundered furiously and Harry almost stepped out but Severus calm voice stopped him.

“You are entirely wrong. Voldemort died because of Potter’s selfless sacrifice. Even if I have not told the boy what to do, sooner or later Potter would have give in and let Voldemort kill him if that could have saved his friends and loved ones. The only thing I can take the blame, or rather the honour for is that it happened sooner than later. Voldemort was nothing more than a petty, jealous half-blood, consumed by his lust for power. He only got what he deserved.”

“SHUT YOUR MOUTH!” Jugson screamed and Harry used the shouting to cover the noise of his footsteps. “How dare you? He was your Master too! You will regret this, Snape!”

“I highly doubt you could do anything to me that would make me regret helping Harry Potter.”

“You will die for this! I will take away anything you hold precious and I will let you suffer! I will only let you die when I get bored with your pleads for mercy and death!”

“I’m afraid I can't allow that to happen.” Harry grinned and pushed the tip of his wand into the man’s back. “Hello Severus, so who’s coming to who’s rescue now?”

“I had the situation under control.” Severus sneered holding Jugson’s hand away from his heart before the man would launch a suicide mission and take Severus with him.

“Yes, love, I can see that.” Harry teased, reaching the other wand towards Severus, who took it as Jugson was still holding on to his. “Lower your wand, Mr. Jugson. You are under arrest for the kidnap and torture of an Auror, for injuring another Magical Law Enforcement Officer and for making violent threats against a war hero. These are only your most recent misdeeds which I’m sure will make Azkaban your home for the rest of your life, so let’s not even drag the past in this, yes?”

Jugson grunted and Harry pushed his wand deeper into the muscled back. The man lowered his hand slowly and Harry pulled out first the long brown wand from his right hand, then the black one from his left palm. He handed that to Severus, who took it with a grateful nod.

“Now step away from Mr. Snape. Slowly.” Harry ordered the man who obliged with his head bowed. Harry had a weird feeling but he repressed it. The man was wandless, there was no way in hell he could pull some sort of stunt and get out of here. “I need to get some reinforcement in here to arrest everyone. Any idea?” Harry asked from Snape.

“We could kill him and the wards would be gone.” Severus suggested with an evil grin. “Another more civilized option would be to follow me back to the entrance.”

“Second option,” Harry answered right away. “Off you go, Mr. Jugson. Lead the way. Mr. Snape knows the way too, so do keep in mind that he will stun you the second you even hesitate to take the right turn.”

“Fawkes, fly ahead. Let the others know I found him and bring them here.” Severus asked the bird who chirped happily and hopped onto Snape’s shoulder, brushed his soft red head to the man’s sharp cheekbones then swished silently away. The Slytherin stepped in front of Jugson and cleared his throat. Jugson looked up. He was smiling. Harry’s instincts screamed in warning that something was off but he couldn't do anything as he didn't see what.

“Jugson, even though my aims were hidden from you during the last decades, you always read my characteristics correctly. So you should know...” Snape hit the man’s scarred face with unrestrained force, “... that no one messes with me, and gets away with it. The only reason you are still alive is because of Mister Potter.”

He stepped next to Harry who prodded the silent man to move on. Jugson started walking and Harry and Snape followed him down the corridors.

“You know, that was unnecessary.” Harry noted merrily when he saw Severus shake his hand.

Snape regarded him for a second. “You look like shit, Potter, thus I am absolutely certain that was more than necessary. And as I said, no one messes with me... or with anything that belongs to me.”

“I love you too.” Harry grinned then he asked in a low voice, “Do you know anything about Ron?”

“He is hospitalized. Still unconscious according to my last information.” Severus answered with a bit of sadness in his voice. Harry took a deep breath. At least Ron was still alive.

“And you? Are you okay? Are you hurt anywhere?”

“Now that I have this scum at wandpoint and you on my side I am indeed alright.”

“Oh for the love of Merlin, just kill me already.” Judson groaned. “You two are disgusting.”

Harry dug his wand deeper into the man’s skin. “Quiet suits you better so do shut up.” As his senses were still tingling, Harry sent some ropes to tie the man’s hand behind his back while they walked. He looked at Snape questioning, who nodded in agreement.

They marched under the sick yellow light for minutes. All of a sudden, Harry could feel a warm hand slithering softly on his back. When it reached his neck and caressed his bare skin, Snape inhaled deeply. “I thought I lost you.” Severus whispered and Harry could hear the desolation in the smooth, velvety voice. He looked at the man and was surprised to see the deep emotions surfacing on the handsome face. He didn't need to say he loved Harry, it was evident in the black eyes.

Harry touched his left hand to Snape’s on his nape, as he answered softly, “I know. There were moments I was sure they found you and killed you.” Shocking sadness dawned on him just because he voiced that fear and he was suddenly certain that he could not bear to live without this man anymore. Memories or not, he wanted to spend the rest of his life with Severus.

“Now I wish we had killed both of you...” Jugson mumbled with repulsion.

 

o.O.o.

 

“Through this door and you’re almost out.” Jugson grunted, stepping away from the entrance.

Harry moved to open it; his hands were on the handle, the bad feeling in the pit of his stomach growing stronger and stronger. He pushed down the handle slowly and quietly. He pulled the door open and waited but nothing happened. All his nerve endings screamed in warning and he was ready to cast spells to attack and protect but the great warehouse was empty. Big crates were lined up in long rows all the way across the vast room, but not a living person could be seen in there.

Harry moved further inside, Jugson followed him, then came Severus holding his wand to the man’s head. They moved carefully. Snape was obviously tense too, prepared for an attack that didn't seem to come. Harry nudged Jugson to move ahead again. Jugson strutted in front of them with his back straight and his chin up, as if he would be going to his coronation not straight to prison.

The silence was deafening, the calmness almost irritating. Harry wanted to shout in agitation.

Something was wrong.

Suddenly, Severus grabbed Jugson and pushed his wand deep into the man’s neck. Jugson started laughing madly but he didn't fight against Snape.

“Too many footprints! This is a trap!” Snape snarled. “Run!” He looked at Harry, his eyes begging him to obey, but Harry wouldn’t abandon Severus. He trusted Snape’s instincts so it didn't even occur to him to ask if the Slytherin was sure about this.

He held out his hand to Severus. “Leave him. Come with me.”

Snape hesitated for only a second, then he pushed Jugson away, who fell onto the ground, still laughing like a madman. Cold fingers slipped over Harry’s and grasping into each other they started running towards the exit.

Jugson’s laughter had stopped abruptly, then he whistled into the silence, the sound was painfully sharp. “Come out boys,” he drawled loudly, “it’s time to play fetch.”

Men appeared from behind crates and boxes, each hiding under black hoods and holding wands. Harry counted ten attackers before he pushed Severus down to the ground and covered him with his own body just in time to avoid the ten spells that flew from the tip of the wands.

Boxes burst into fire behind them, one on their left exploded, wood splinters slashing into Harry’s face and hands. He felt tingling magic as Severus cured him right away, but Harry didn't have time to speculate on how Severus knew he was injured. He felt a sudden, very familiar warmness spread out from his stomach and surround his heart and for a second, he was terrified that maybe Severus was injured and he was sensing blood. However, by the time he had managed to look down on the man, who seemed unharmed just like him, he was already cured. He had more urging things to do, than lament on the origin of the weird sensation.

His eyes met with the ink black gaze and Harry grinned. Severus returned the gesture, however his smirk was more evil.

They stood up at the same time. Harry casted a Protego and Severus shot two well aimed spells through the blue protective barrier, then they were behind the crate again. Judging by the painful cries Snape’s charms hit the targets.

“Eight left.” Harry murmured half aloud, though it was meant only as a thought. They didn't have time to feel relieved, their hiding place was coming apart fairly quickly from the incoming spells. They rolled away right at the second someone buried the box under red flames. Harry didn't spent much time hiding, he learned long time ago that that was never a good tactic.

He jumped and turned over casting spells at everything and everyone that moved and most of the times were casting deadly spells. His Stunning Spells roared across the vast room like arrows. He was in his element once again. He didn't enjoy fighting that much, but at least it was better now that he knew what kind of danger was ahead. The bitter sensation in the pit of his stomach wasn’t gone but it was numbed by the adrenalin that pumped through his veins.

He noticed the danger too late. Severus was fighting with a black skinned man, and he didn't see the dark blue spear of light that flew towards him sent by a man with long strawberry blond, curly hair. Harry watched almost in trans as the blue light hit Snape’s arm, though would he be able to move, there wasn’t anything he could do.

Severus flinched, blood splashed from the wound but he didn't stop fighting. It was as if the unknown charm didn't have any effect on the man, unless his renewed efforts in stunning all their attackers could count as one. Harry, on the other hand, felt a sudden vicious anger flare up deep inside him and with an animalistic snarl, he spent a Cutting Curse back at the blond man. He wanted to spend a Healing Charm to Severus as well, but noticed that the bleeding had stopped already. He turned back towards the blond and attacked again.

While he was busy unarming Snape’s attacker, someone suddenly grabbed his left arm. He felt a forceful tug, then bright, painfully familiar, green curse zoomed away in front of him, right where his head was almost a second ago. He turned around but before he could thank Snape, he saw Jugson. His hands were free once again and he was holding a wand.

“Down!” Harry screamed and Severus was on his knees right away. Harry, now with a much better aim, sent an Incarcerous towards Jugson, who pulled one of his men in front of him as shield. The ropes tied the dark haired attacker tightly, then Jugson shoved the man onto the floor.

While pulling Severus up with his left hand, Harry attacked Jugson again, before he could send another Death Curse towards them. Shield Charms were useless against the Unforgivables, so they had to dodge them some other way.

Spells were coming from every direction, but Snape took a second and when he was standing right in front of Harry, he whispered, “Were we in some other situation, I would find that order quite appealing.”

Even in the heat of the battle Harry laughed, then turned his back to Severus. They kept on fighting with their back against each other, and Harry couldn't help but notice the surge of power that ran through his body from the point their shoulders and backs were touching.

Harry block the red spell Robard sent towards him with lifting one of the boxes, which then caught on flames. The pieces like small burning comets descended, which gave Harry an idea. He spread his arms and gathered his powers. His fisted hands and then the whole length of his arms started shaking with magic and all the little wood pieces on the ground vibrated as well. The debris rose up and levitated between him and his two attackers like a wall. He opened his left hand and the wood pieces burst into fire. The two men seemed scared for a second, Robard even stepped back slightly. With a forceful push, Harry send the burning wood towards the men, who jumped aside quickly.

He snapped his head up at the painful screams of iron being bended. Severus twisted the tubes over them and with a flick of his wand sent them towards an attacker. He watched with a wicked grin as the iron spear like rods nailed the man to the nearest wall. They didn't pierce flesh but the man wasn’t able to move anymore.

“Serpensortia!” Harry shouted, when he saw Robard and the other man stagger forwards from behind a big clump of wood and metal, bruised and bleeding. The snake burst out of his wand and then slithered into the ground with a venomous hiss. “Innnpesss*.” Harry ordered and the great python attacked. Behind him, Severus laughed, appreciating his ingenuity.

One of the enemies fell back, frightened, but Robard kept on walking, trying to get closer to Jugson. The snake meanwhile slid to the man on the ground, who tried to back away, pointlessly. It hissed wildly then sank its long fangs into the man’s shoulder. There was a painful cry, but the snake didn't stop and slithered its thick body around the wriggling person, tying him down, silencing him as it slowly glided around his throat. It didn't kill, but the force it used around the man’s neck was firm enough to make him pass out.

“Give it up, Jugson!” Harry shouted towards the last two remaining attackers.

Jugson and Robard stood close to each other, right in front of Harry and Severus. All four of them had their wands drawn, Harry’s was pointed at Jugson, while Snape was aiming at Robard.

“Oh dear Mr. Potter, do you really think I wasn’t ready to leave this life behind, when I invited you over? I will not let you arrest me. I will, if needed, die here, but before that happens I’ll make sure to take both of you with me.” Jugson growled.

Severus took a cautious step forward. “Why don't we handle this like adults, Jugson? Duel with me.”

Harry knew what Severus wanted. An official duel had rules that cannot be broken. It would be one-on-one and Harry could take care of Robard while Severus occupied Jugson. However, in this case, if Severus needed a hand, Harry wouldn’t be able to help either.

“And leave the kids out?” Jugson laughed. “Why would I do that? This one is the only competent it seems, why would I give up his help, Severus?”

“It would be just the two of us. If you manage to overcome me, you can do whatever you want. You could kill me, is it not what you have been dreaming of all these years?” Severus asked.

“Killing you?” Jugson snorted. “Don't be ridiculous, Severus. I don't want to end you with a simple spell. What would that be compared to the pain you caused me? Oh no, Severus, I want you to suffer.”

“Then make me.” Severus sneered.

“You will beg me to take your life, Severus. You will beg after I took the most important thing in your life. Avada-” Smirking, Jugson pointed his wand at Harry. “-Kedavra!”

Once more, Harry was facing the inevitable death and this time his hopes were even less then any times before. Because he knew this time, he wouldn’t be granted another chance, he didn't have another piece of soul inside who could take over his place and walk off with Death instead of him.

The world seemed to slow down as the green spell came right towards him. Suddenly, Severus moved, shifted in the air, his black robe flared up as he stepped in front of Harry. The ink black eyes bore into his and Harry could write a novel about all the emotions that run in that pair of endless, beautiful eyes. He reached out a hand, but Severus was too far away. He couldn't touch, he couldn't protect him. The man he loved more than anything, wanted to sacrifice his life for him and he couldn't do anything to prevent it.

“Protego!” He screamed in vain, he knew it but he couldn't help it, he had to do something. This was unfair on so many levels and Harry felt childish for feeling so. Why did they have to go through this all over again? Why did he have to lose Severus now, when they finally found each other again?

Severus smiled and Harry couldn't take his eyes off the thin lips and this one last gesture. Such a simple one, yet the warmness that spread in Harry’s chest was almost blazing. Severus didn't feel any regret. He was about to die and he smiled, knowing his demise was for a worthy cause. Harry felt his eyes burn.

He watched as the green curse that had killed all his loved ones came closer and closer to Severus to claim one more life. He could feel the ice-cold hand of Death, clutching around his heart. Long, bony fingers held his throbbing flesh, slowing it down until it would stop, because surely he wouldn’t survive losing Severus. He would die with the man.

His eyes were stuck on Severus but he could see as his Protego Charm formed a shield behind Snape. Pointless, the world echoed in his mind but he stashed it away. If he believed in it strong enough, maybe... maybe...

The shield, which usually shined light blue and was almost invisible, this time was different and Harry didn't know why. The barrier was thicker and dark yellow like sparkling gold. Silver threads of magic waved around it and pulsed with sheer energy. The sight would have been beautiful any other time, now however its beauty was lost on him.

The platinum cords reached out towards the Death Curse and entwined with it, as if trying to numb its impact into the shield. The dense golden wall of pure, untamed magic flashed brightly one more time then the green spell tangled with the silver threads crashed to Harry’s shield.

The world suddenly went dark and Harry’s last thought was that maybe the day he could meet with Severus at the foggy King’s Cross was closer than ever.

 

o.O.o

 

Severus watched in slow motion as Harry’s body slumped onto the cold, dusty floor. The young man’s strong arm was now limp as it fell down in an ungraceful coil, his holly wand clattered on the ground, Severus could hear the soft noise. The green eyes closed slowly, the emotions on the handsome, beloved face melted off, giving place to eternal calmness.

Suddenly, he saw the eleven-year-old boy, putting the Sorting Hat on his head. The image shifted and Harry was older, bloody but grinning with Gryffindor Godrick’s sword in his hand. Then he was lying next to the Black Lake, over Black’s unconscious body, just as they survived the attack of a hundred Dementors. But in the same time, Severus also saw him at the other side of the lake, with his stag Patronus brightly shining. Then it was the image of Harry appearing with the Triwizard Cup in one hand, and Cedric Diggory’s lifeless body in his other. Then it was the moments after the boy realized about the Prophecy, his face contorting in anger and sorrow. Then the mental image shifted again, and there it was, Harry as he shouted “Coward!” at Severus after the murder of Albus Dumbledore. Then it was the boy in the Shrieking Shack, crying, because Severus was dying. Then the trial, Potter defending him. Then their goodbyes and then Potter, cooking and smiling. Being happy.

He would never smile again.

Harry Potter was dead.

How he was still alive, Severus did not know. He did not even care. He turned around and let the devastating sorrow in his heart take over his action.

He didn't see the men that were running towards him, he only had eyes for Robard and Jugson.

Robard started dashing as fast as he could and Severus sent a nonverbal Sectumsempra towards the coward Auror. He wanted to cry the spell, he wanted to scream over this throbbing silence in his head but he knew not a word would come out of his mouth right now.

 Robard yelped in pain as the curse slashed a long straight line onto his back. His blood gushed out and he fell on the ground, whimpering in pain. Severus looked towards Jugson. Robard didn't deserve a second of his attention anymore.

The other man was laughing. Severus couldn't hear the cruel noise, nor did he want to. The deafening quiet in his mind and the almost tranquil nothingness in his chest belied what he was feeling. His inner side was screaming with pain and misery. He was devastated and destroyed.

Harry was dead.

He didn't realize it wasn’t his inner side that was screaming until he felt the pain in his throat.

He marched towards the one man that was still standing, the man who caused this all. His black robes billowed behind him as he walked with determined steps. He didn't need to run, Jugson wasn’t going anywhere. Severus was faintly aware that the blackness around him wasn’t just his cloak but his magic as well.

He hesitated only for a second between the two curses in his mind. Death or pain? He looked at the scarred face and pushed the tip of his wand into the soft skin on Jugson’s neck. The man was still smiling evilly. Pain it is. For Harry.

“That’s it, Severus. Kill me. It doesn’t matter what you do. You can't bring him back. Your little lover is lost forever.” Jugson let out a barking laughter and Severus pressed his wand in deeper. A bit more force and the blunt tip would pierce through the skin.

How could this petty man with his thirst for revenge manage what so many had failed over the years and kill Harry Potter?

Harry, in his memory, laughed again. He heard the cheerful sound and it guided him back to reality.

Would this really be his course of action? Revenge? What would Harry say if he used an Unforgivable on this man? One of the curses Harry detested all his life, loathed even. He remembered the hatred in Harry’s voice when he spoke about Robard letting his Aurors use the Unforgivables for torture and kill. Was this how he wanted to honour the death of his beloved Harry? To torture in his name, to kill for him, how Severus had done for Voldemort?

The answer was simple.

“You will rot in Azkaban till the end of times.” Severus snarled, then let his hand fall to his side and he turned around.

“You bloody coward!” Jugson cried. “Kill me! I killed him! I killed Harry Potter! Kill me, Snape!”

Crimson red rage filled Severus’s mind and his magic released in a burst, pushing Jugson back to a wall. Severus waved his wand and lifted two iron bars from the ground.

“Yes, you did. And do not believe for one single moment that I will ever forget that. Remember, Jugson, Azkaban is not guarded by Dementors anymore but by wizards and witched whose Saviour you have just murdered.” Severus was surprised how steady his voice sounded; the venom and coldness in it however was welcomed as an old friend.

He gathered his remaining energy and shot the iron bars towards Jugson. This time, he made sure they pierced flesh. He left the man there but the agonizing screams of pain followed him back to Harry.

The young Gryffindor wasn’t alone anymore. Black, Remus and Hermione kneeled around him and Fawkes was flying over him, singing a heartbroken, yet uplifting tune.

There were questions, some of them registered in Severus, but none received an answer. He hardly paid any attention to the people around them.

His steps were study and unwavering until he saw the body. Then he started staggering and in the end he just fell on his knees next to Potter’s other side. He slithered an arm under Harry’s head and another around his waist and he pulled the lifeless young man onto his lap.

He just held the motionless body in his embrace, fully aware of the burning tears that were streaming on his face. He kissed Harry’s forehead and begged to him in soft whispers, “Come back to me... Please... come back. I cannot bear to lose you, Harry. Please, love, come back to me.”

He heard the sudden gasps coming from the people around them but he didn't need to look up to see why. He saw, too, as silver strings of his magic lashed out from him and surrounded their bodies. Grasping strongly into Harry’s hand, he noticed how some of the platinum cords turned gold and run though the motionless man in his arm.

He knew what he was seeing, but he couldn't appreciate it. It was too late now.

He closed his eyes and pressed his forehead to Harry’s, silently begging for one more miracle.

“You broke your promise.” A well-known voice whispered hoarsely in his mind.

He did, didn't he? He promised Potter, he wouldn’t do anything stupid to save the young man this time. Yet all his efforts were in vain. Harry died.

Gentle fingers carded through his long hair. The sensation was too familiar.

He opened his eyes.

Green eyes smiled back at him.

“And I could not be happier about it.” Severus pulled Harry even nearer and closed his eyes again. He sobbed silently as he listened to the once again steadily beating heart.

 

o.O.o

 

“It’s his lucky charm, Sirius.” Remus chided holding up the small watch. “And he’s going to need it now more than ever.”

They had found the pocket watch at Grimmauld Place. Harry must have left it there on the day of the wedding and after the wards were demolished, he probably never returned for it. Remus decided to bring it to St. Mungo’s, maybe it would help Harry to regain his consciousness.

It has been over a week since the attack. Harry was brought to hospital, but no one knew why