- Harry Potter/Severus Snape
- Harry Potter Severus Snape
- Slash Angst
- The Harry Potter at Hogwarts Years
- Philosopher's Stone Chamber of Secrets Prizoner of Azkaban Goblet of Fire Order of the Phoenix
Published: 01/12/2005Updated: 02/09/2005Words: 146,361Chapters: 30Hits: 275,831
Green Eyes Sublime
- Story Summary:
- When Harry returns to Hogwarts for his sixth year, only Severus seems to truly notice how deeply Harry's despair goes. Since Dumbledore is as blinded as everyone else, Severus decides to take matters into his own hands and help. But doing that means opening up his own soul and secrets to the Boy-Who-Lived, because Harry isn't going to just heal in one day. SS/HP, SLASH and depression related theme.
- Chapter Summary:
- When Harry returns to Hogwarts for his Sixth Year only Severus seems to truly notice how deeply Harry's despair goes. Since Dumbledore is as blinded as everyone else Severus decides to take matters into his own hands and help. But doing that means opening up his own soul and secrets to the Boy-Who-Lived because Harry isn't going to just heal in one day. HP/SS SLASH and depressing thoughts.
- Author's Note:
- Thanks: To my wonderful beta readers Amanda_Saitou and Philo whose wonderful help kept me sane.
Standing on the Edge
"Where have you been? I've been waiting for you to get back? You have to come quickly."
When Severus had left the Great Hall after dinner, fifteen minutes before, the most prominent thing in his mind was to take a quick shower, grade a few second, fourth and fifth year parchments, edit his seventh year lesson plan, re-write his third year ones since the brats seemed to have forgotten everything he had taught them the year before and somewhere between all that and daylight the next morning, see if he could at least get four hours of sleep.
He had not bargained on walking into his bathroom to find Moaning Myrtle standing by his wash basin wringing her invisible hands.
"What are you doing here?"
In all his time at Hogwarts the ghost had never before enter his quarters. In fact he could almost feel shocked at the knowledge that his plumbing was no more spared from her haunting than was the rest of the bathrooms in Hogwarts.
"You have to come," she repeated with large drops of transparent tears falling down her transparent cheeks. "It's terrible!"
Severus tried not to wince visible. It was apparent that he was certainly not going to get to work as soon as he planned.
"What's terrible? What are you speaking of?" he asked, not trying to hide his irritation in the least. She was wearing on his nerves. She wore on every one's nerve and this performance of hers certainly was not adding points to his span of patience.
She sighed then held her head in both hands and moan dramatically. "It's terrible. There's blood everywhere. Everything ruined. Destroyed. You have to come. You have to help."
Severus felt all the blood drain from his face. 'Blood? Oh sweet Merlin. Not another Cutter.'
"Who, Myrtle?" he asked her urgently.
She looked up at him suddenly. Her expression changed to rage. She moved to float above him in the air, her hands on her hips, her eyes blazing in her ghostly anger.
"WHO DO YOU THINK?" she shouted very loudly. "DON'T YOU KNOW?"
Severus took deep calming breaths. Immediately a few dark curses had floated to his lips and he forced them to return to where he had hidden them. He knew a curse that would damn her to purgatory, forced to remain between heaven and hell. He knew a curse that would leave her wandering the plains of limbo forever cursed to deal with the souls of other children who were bad. He even knew a curse that would return her to her skeleton or maggot filled body to spend eternity dead but still aware. If he had his way he would appease his dark side and alternately force her to endure all three.
As it were, he needed her to tell him who she was referring to.
"No. Myrtle. I don't know who you're speaking of!" He thought he'd shown remarkable control actually, even if he had somewhat raised his voice.
Myrtle's tears began to flow again and she seemed to lose all her anger. Returning to where she had originally stood before him she sniffled, then groaned. When it seemed she was ready, she looked him directly in the eyes again and for some reason seemed to get suddenly happier.
"It's Harry Potter of course." She smiled shyly. "I think he's finally decided to join me."
'Standing in a bubble.'
"What did I do?" Harry shouted. "I can't help who I am!"
'To be invisible in a world that loves you.'
Harry sobbed at the thought, banging his head against the wal. Shouting, screaming, sobbing, crying.
He had ripped his robe off when he had entered. When he had been calm enough to cast the spell and magically seal the door, but he was way past calm by now.
"It isn't enough you're Harry Potter is it!"
The angry words came crashing back into him, invading his thoughts, consuming him in a swirl of hollow darkness. They encircled his brain and seemed to be bent on driving him mad and he couldn't get them out. He couldn't stop their assault to his insides.
"You have all you can possibly want...!"
Harry closed his eyes, covered his ears and screamed.
Screaming to dispel the abyss that threatened to swallow his soul. Screaming to stop the voice, the words, the lies made to be true. Screaming to regain his sanity.
And he gasped for breath as the tears burned their way past the darkness. He felt as if he was being turned inside out. Everything inside of him was trying to get out, to escape the box he had locked them in.
He wasn't even aware when he smashed the mirrors earlier. Or shattered the doors of the stalls. Or the wash basins. He had even flung his wand away somewhere and couldn't focus long enough to remember where. He needed it now.
Then he realized he didn't really.
There were pieces of glass everywhere. He grabbed one, squeezing as he wretched for breath. As he fought against the hole inside.
He didn't even feel as it sliced though the tender flesh of his palm. All he saw was the blood that streamed from between his fingers and he brought the glass up to his bare arm, alternating between each hand.
He felt the slices like small licks of flames dancing across his flesh. Burning away the pain.
'No more Harry Potter.'
"Me!" Harry shouted to the silence. "Just me! I don't know how to be perfect!"
He screamed, shouted, howled incoherently, words that he needed for so long to say. Streams of thoughts and anger. Rivers of pain, that had to come out.
'Locked in your own little bubble. Lost to the outside world.'
"Harry open the door!"
Severus arrived just in time to see Hermione knocking on the door of the girl's bathroom. Ron had followed her but was sitting with his back rested against the door, pretending to be oblivious to Hermione's plea to the silence inside.
"Harry don't be childish, we can talk about this. Please Harry," she reasoned, her forehead pressed between both hands that were palms against the door, obviously too tired to start pounding again.
"Ms. Granger, Mr. Weasley what may I inquire is this about?"
Both students were startled and Severus watched as they tried to excuse the situation. "No..Nothing Professor Snape."
Hermione had answered, while Ron pulled himself up off the floor to stand beside her. Neither of them could quite meet his eyes. If Severus had his way he would punish both of them because it was obvious that they were both at fault for whatever Potter...Harry seemed to have overreacted to. At the moment, though, the important thing was to know just how much Harry had overreacted.
"Step aside," he commanded them and reluctantly they complied.
With his ear against the door Severus listened...to the silence inside. Silencing Spell. Not good.
He turned to the two students watching him with distrust and sneered, "You will both have quite a lot of explaining to do, but in the meantime, I think it would do you both good to see this. I suggest you erect shielding spells."
He gave them time to do that, then with a flourish of his wand, shouted a spell. The bathroom door exploded towards them.
Harry turned, his eyes unfocused, his hair a mess, his hands and face covered in blood. His school robe, his wand and everything else, especially the floor, lay half hidden under a pile of broken glass, wood from the stall doors and porcelain from the wash basins. His arms were lined with gashes, his pants and shirt ruined from the slashes he had made at his skin through the material. Both soaked with blood from the numerous springs of crimson beneath them.
Hermione gasped somewhere behind Severus and Ron whimpered but Severus' main concern was the boy before him.
"Potter," he said coaxingly. "Mr. Potter come here."
When Harry didn't move Severus took a step towards him and Harry howled incoherently in anger. Severus stopped moving.
"Don't be stupid, you know I won't hurt you," he tried again but Harry began to back up.
Severus took a deep breath then released it violently. Obviously this was not working and he knew why. He had been trying to help without losing the air of authority he needed since Hermione and Ron were there. Harry needed him to be Severus and not Professor Snape. One not the other. Severus was beginning to feel very schizophrenic and tried to remember why in Merlin's name he had decided to take it upon himself to help the Golden Boy.
He squeezed his eyes shut and fought the pride within violently. Then opening them he looked at Harry with the look of worry that only Harry had ever been privy to see.
"Harry..." he said softly. "Harry let me help you. Let me..."
Harry gasped softly and tears began to stream down his face but his expression became otherwise completely emotionless. As if lost in his own world.
"I don't know how," he said broken. "I don't know how to be perfect."
"No one wants you to be perfect. No one that matters that is." Severus tried to keep the eye contact he had established but Harry's gaze darted quickly to Ron and Hermione. Both had been too overwhelmed to move from the doorway.
Only then did Severus understand.
"Mr. Weasley, Ms. Granger could you please go to Dumbledore's office. Tell him I sent you. Wait for me there."
He listened to the two as they slowly, relunctantly left, but his attention was still focussed on Harry.
"Harry, come here. We need to have a talk."
Harry turned away. His back to the other man, he held his head in his hands and began sobbing softly, "Go away. Just leave me alone."
Severus walked up to him and slowly rested a hand on the boy's shoulder. Harry spun around as if shocked, his eyes blazing with anger though the tears kept falling, mingling with the blood streaming down his face.
"No!" he shouted. "Don't touch me! I know you don't care! I don't want your pity or your obligation to the cause. I don't want you to help me because Dumbledore is making you and you feel you owe it to my father and the world!"
Severus stared at him in silence. Waiting.
"Help me for me," Harry gasped then turned away again. "Help Harry because he's Harry. Not Potter. Not the son of James. Not the Boy-Who-Lived. Just Harry. Just Harry...."
"You're not an obligation Harry. You stopped being that the first night you sat in my office and told me about your family." Severus finally answered softly. "But you have been Potter to me for so long, it's all I have to begin with. If you want more of me, you have to tell me more and not be afraid to trust me. I will work on my misconceptions as we go along."
Harry nodded and took a deep, ragged breath.
"I didn't ask to be me. I don't know how to change that," he whimpered softly. "Ron says I have everything I need. I don't. I don't have so many things. I need so many things that I can't breathe when I think about it all. I have to fight it always. I have to...laugh when I want to scream. There's so many things that the world expects of me and I'm so afraid. I'm so afraid I'll fail and they'll all suffer because of me."
He gasped, "Severus...it's all too much and I'll die. I'll die if I can't...I'll die if I can't breathe again."
"That was what I was trying so hard to do," Severus answered. "I was trying to give you somewhere to be free and not have to worry about the world outside the walls of Hogwarts. I was trying to help -"
Harry sank to his knees feeling as if his legs couldn't be strong enough to bear the burden of the world he carried anymore. He began to cry. Suffering through violent racks of air and tears and guilt and anger and so much pain it was eating away at his soul.
Severus had been trying to help. Yes, he knew that. Not pity or obligation as he had secretly thought. He had been trying to help and now Harry had ruined it. He had tried so hard to get better for the past three weeks but he hadn't he had just been forcing everything beneath the surface and now he had let Severus down by giving in.
"I'm so sor..sorry," he sobbed softly.
Severus knelt behind him and after a brief hesitation he wrapped his arms around the too small, too thin waist and held Harry tightly against his chest.
And Harry sobbed, not bothering to wipe away the tears that sprung from his eyes or the blood that streamed down his face.
Blood from his forehead...from the scar he had tried so desperately to remove with his nails and his screams and the pieces of broken glass on the floor.
Not wanting to be Harry Potter anymore.
"Here. Drink this."
Severus had gently carried Harry back to his chambers, grateful that by now the halls were empty and most students had resigned to their common rooms for the rest of the night.
He laid Harry on the black couch before his desk and handed him a vial of Omni-heal potion. Harry took it without a word and drank it not protesting to the fact that he knew what it was and what it would do to the fresh wounds he had tried so hard to rip into his soul.
It didn't take long for the potion to take effect. A warm blue glow traveled along Harry's skin, sealing all recent wounds and soon Harry's skin was once again whole. His lightning scar evident once more.
"I will be right back," Severus said and waited for a reaction he was not necessarily expecting.
There was none, but a sad, unfocused air settled over the teen on his couch. The emerald of his eyes had dulled, no longer sparkling with the laughter that Severus had witnessed only that morning.
'So long ago. The damage that can be wrought in a few hours...'
After casting quick mending and cleansing spells on Harry's clothes, Severus walked into his bedroom, over to the fireplace where a canister of floo powder permanently sat. Grabbing a handful of the powder, Severus replaced the can then threw the fistful into the fire.
"Albus Dumbledore's office," he declared then stepped into the flames.
Stepping out on the other end, the first thing he noticed was Dumbledore's radiant smile. Severus wondered if there was any way to hex it off the man's face without dying seconds after.
"Two hundred points from Gryffindor," he said coldly, knowing that the two he had sent were somewhere about the office.
He quickly realized that they were huddled together near the door. Hermione was crying into Ron's shoulder and Ron himself had become so pale that his freckles looked like dots upon his cheeks. Both, no doubt, would pass out soon from shock of some sort.
"One hundred more, in fact, for the damage done to the bathroom," Severus added, still looking at the Headmaster.
"Now Severus don't be hasty," Dumbledore said still smiling. "Why don't you all sit and we can sort this out."
He waved his hand and chairs appeared before his desk. Ron, then Hermione sat, then reluctantly Severus joined them.
"Lemon drops any one? No? Tea?"
Severus was one more syllable short of growling in distaste. Dumbledore, seeming to sense this just smiled and conjured up four cups of tea.
One sip of the tea and Severus fought his inbred manners not to spit it back out. The thing was oozing Calming potion and Severus really didn't think he wished to calm down in the least.
"Now I take it this is about Mr. Potter?" Dumbledore asked.
Ron and Hermione nodded but Severus' eyes narrowed in anger. "When is this never in some way about Potter?"
Dumbledore smiled, sensing the concern hidden so carefully within the Potions master. Again, Severus did not get concerned over petty matters and insignificant students. Especially, since Dumbledore was sure he saw a hint of worry in the depths of those deep, dark eyes.
"Did I...Is he going to be alright?" Ron asked in a shaky voice and Hermione sobbed.
Severus rounded on him, "Why? Were the two of you trying to kill him Weasley? Thought you'd spare the Dark Lord the agony and tear Potter's heart to pieces just because you know you can? I will not even ask of all the spiteful things you must have said. Nor do I need to know why. You, who are two of the few people he trusts and -"
"Severus," Dumbledore interrupted. "Now, now, I'm sure the two didn't mean to cause harm intentionally. Mr. Weasley and Ms. Granger loves Harry like a brother. The two would never hurt him simply out of spite."
"So you know what happened? Did they tell you?" Severus asked, turning to Dumbledore again. "I can just hazard a guess that they didn't spare him anything in their cruelty."
"Hermione didn't even do anything. Don't pull her into this. She was helping..." Ron protested.
"I see. So it is you Weasley that caused this to happen. Why don't you tell the Headmaster and I exactly what occurred tonight. I myself would dearly like to prove what an imbecile you really are!"
"Actually I would rather not be privy to that information myself. However Severus, if you still wish to know I'm sure that they will no doubt be willing to tell you," Dumbledore declared.
Severus glared openly at the man before him. He could almost read the words in the older wizards eyes like a scroll.
'I gave you permission to do this because I trust you can Severus. Remember that you were the one to take this upon yourself.'
Really, Severus could not take much of this nonsense much longer. He stood to leave with eyes that could probably shoot lightening, but with an expression that was calm if nothing but cold.
"If this is the way it is to be, then excuse me. I have other more important things to tend to."
Both Hermione and Ron stood to leave also and again Ron asked, "Is he alright Professor? He didn't...die...did he?"
Severus stopped himself just in time not to snort in disgust. The boy deserved to think Harry had been trying to kill himself. If this was the way Potter's best friends were he dared not to think about the other Gryffindors.
"You will just have to wait and see," he said with a sneer then walking over to the fireplace he grabbed another handful of floo powder and was just about to make his exit when Dumbledore cleared his throat.
"Three hundred points to Gryffindor," he heard behind him. "I cannot allow for the deduction of House points for private disputes, Severus. Do forgive me."
"Goodbye Headmaster," was Severus' reply as he angrily threw in the floo powder and stepped into the fire.
He ignored the fact that Dumbldore was radiantly grinning again and his eyes twinkling with quiet mirth as he watched Severus disappear from sight.
Harry was exactly where Severus had left him in the exact same position.
Severus sighed softly and resigned himself to the fact that Harry may well have slipped into a catatonic state from the entire ordeal. Of course he was very much surprised when half way into re-writing his third year lesson plan, the teen stirred then sat up in the couch.
"He thinks I like Hermione," Harry said softly, Severus' hand stilled on the parchment he was using and looked up to meet the quiet green eyes.
"I don't like Hermione," Harry continued softly. "I mean, she's my best friend also, but I don't like her in that way."
"So all this. It was about Mr. Weasley's jealous streak?" Severus asked with a raised eyebrow and Harry nodded.
"It wasn't all about that," Harry amended after a small pause. "It was about the pensieve too and me, being Harry Potter. Ron always had a thing about that. I suppose it was everything he always wanted to say, and now...he's said it all."
"Harry -" Severus began but was interrupted by the quiet voice again.
"No. I...he deserves to say what he thinks. I'm his best friend. I..." he paused. "I've been keeping things from him so I guess he has a right to be angry."
"What things?" Severus asked. "I doubt there is much you could have done to stop Weasley when he got it into his head to be candid."
In reply Harry gave Severus a piercing stare then slowly stood to remove his shirt.
Again, Severus could not help thinking how thin the boy was, even with the flat stomach and slightly bulging biceps he acquired from playing Quidditch for so many years.
Severus, however, couldn't seem to tear his eyes away from the small scattering of scars that disrupted the lightly tanned skin color of Harry's torso. Five in all. Severus didn't even have to consciously count them. Small in number, but holding so much meaning.
Harry pointed to a particular one that seemed to have once been the deepest. It was about three inches in length and ran diagonally in the middle of his chest. Severus forced his own hand not to fly to his own chest as he stared at the scar.
"End of fourth year and then middle of fifth when I reopened it," Harry said with an expression as if he was battling against a painful memory. "Then I just accepted what I knew. No matter how much I bled, I couldn't bleed the knowledge out. So now I've accepted it."
Again Severus' eyes were captured in a piercing gaze as Harry replied slowly, "That I'm attracted to other guys. I'm gay. I don't like Hermione like that. I never will."
Severus would have loved to think that he was expecting something like that confession, but frankly he was so shocked he forgot to hide it.
"Did your godfather know?"
Harry shook his head sadly, "I never got the chance to tell him."
'Sweet Merlin, how much does one person have to go through before you have pity upon his soul?'
Such a bitter thought, but Harry didn't need bitter Severus knew. After all he had just said he was perfectly alright with the knowledge of his sexuality by now.
"At fourteen? You knew this at fourteen? And you didn't tell either of your best friends?"
Harry shrugged, "Well I didn't know, in the sense that I knew it. It was just something there that I couldn't get rid of. Hence the cut. I mean I had a crush on a girl at the time, but well, something about it just didn't seem right. Then there was fifth year and whatever it was that I thought I could have with Cho fell through and deep down I knew why."
He made a face. "It wasn't that I had weird dreams or anything. Voldemort pretty much overwhelms whatever good dreams I have. It was just something I knew. Like, 'this is me being angry, and this is me...well...gay'. I'm quite okay with it. I wouldn't want the whole world to know but I just think that maybe I should have told certain people. Like Ron and Hermione...and Sirius."
"Yes well, you're officially the first person to know," Harry responded as he put his shirt back on and sat down in the couch.
"Well then I congratulate me on my good fortune," Severus' voice oozed fake sarcasm as he returned his attention to his lesson plan. "I'll be sure to thank whichever deity it is who deemed me worthy of receiving this tiding from you."
Harry rolled his eyes then stretched out onto the couch, his head rested upon one arm rest his feet curled upon the cushion, shoes and all.
"Thank you," he whispered after a pause so long that Severus had sworn he had fallen asleep.
Harry sighed softly into the cushion of black velvet. "For deciding to be the glue that will hold me together."
"I am not your glue Potter. That is the duty of your friends," Severus scoffed. "I was merely trying to keep you alive and sane one more day longer."
Harry decided not to reply to that, instead, after another long pause he asked, "May I stay here tonight? I don't want to go back up there. I'm so tired and it's so nice and comfortable here. I just want to go to asleep."
"No, Mr. Potter, you may not stay here for the night," was Severus' immediate response, though he kept his attention on his work. "You may not under any circumstance fall asleep where you are either. Don't forget who we are in this school. As a student you are certainly not allowed to do anything of the sort."
"Don't call me that!" Harry groaned, already drifting into unconsciousness. "You'll let me think of myself as 'Mr. Potter' when I'm being unreasonable."
Severus deemed that not worthy of a reply, but ten minutes later when he again looked towards the lithe figure lying in the chair, he had to stifle a gasp of outrage.
Harry had done exactly as Severus had forbidden him to and had already fallen asleep on the couch.