When Hermione Fights
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 The Morning After and Past Events, chapter 77

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Anzahl der Beiträge : 112
Anmeldedatum : 25.10.14
Ort : Bodensee

The Morning After and Past Events, chapter 77 Empty
BeitragThema: The Morning After and Past Events, chapter 77   The Morning After and Past Events, chapter 77 EmptyDo Jul 26, 2018 7:24 am

Chapter beta: Dani
Chapter translator: Aivy

Once again, I fell into my teacher’s bed which I had left only yesterday, exhausted and tired, and looked at the sleeping, striking face of the otherwise so strict man. Once you had been struck, it was probably a vicious circle. Draco had confronted me in the restroom during the train ride, and thus set the beginning of our intimacy.

It was unfortunate that Harry unconsciously attacked Snape. I hoped he had no concussion. I hoped it would have been only a small blow to the head when he hit the wall and that the tearing and bursting sutures had led to the loss of his consciousness. We had to be lucky once in a while, right?

I adjusted my pillow again - yes, I already considered it mine - and laid my head on it. When it got too cold, I slipped underneath the cover. I glanced sideways and watched the constant rise and fall of Snape's chest. He would be fine soon. It was so annoying; on the other hand, I couldn’t be too upset about it. Maybe that was the crucial path for Harry?

Harry, Harry; that had been really shocking and I thought it was good that he had learned this unvarnished and honest truth. It was never good to glorify other people. We were all human, made mistakes and were far from perfect.

It was good that Harry now knew that even his parents had been flawed people! Even his mother, about whom he had also complained that she had not acted properly in this exceptional situation. But as I said, whether he would accept my argument that we were all human and made mistakes? I didn’t think so. Harry could be very stubborn in his opinions.

His right or wrong, he had very clear ideas about those. And as I said, this scene, which he had described to me, fell under wrong in Harry’s opinion! Maybe Harry thought it was so bad because, until he came to Hogwarts, he had had a similar fate at the Muggle School? He had entrusted that to me in our first and second year because his cousin had made his life hell there and he said he knew that Neville and he were faring well with Malfoy's verbal attacks if he did reminiscent of this very brutal and defenseless time of his life. Harry was a child marked by violence, abuse and neglect through and through.

He had tried to tell me in a roundabout way that he was no stranger to physical violence and I knew from experience myself how vicious little children could be to their comrades, that shaped the rest of one’s life.

An outsider like Snape, or even Harry and myself - yes, even at Hogwarts, we were not members of the crowd and stuck out of it like rare diamonds - to snub, humiliate, and embarrass such an outsider who’d never had it easy and hard enough every day anyway, to do such a thing to someone our age, that was a no-go for Harry, something he deeply despised, which was understandable.

Since this school year, not only Draco did hold back with hostility. He had begun to do so in our fourth year, after the shameful attack of the wrong Moody when the Defense professor had turned him into a ferret. But Harry, too, had outgrown the childishness and hadn’t said a single nasty or venomous word to Draco since the start of the school year. The only one who made an occasional dumb comment was Ron but never Harry.

I… We just would have to wait and see how Harry would decide to deal with this new information. I was curious. The fact that Harry had taken care of the professor so touchingly had surprised me a little since I didn’t know this side of him. But I had noticed that he was horrified to find out how severely Snape had been hurt. At least now he knew that I really hadn’t lied to him about what had happened yesterday.

I could see that Harry was absolutely shocked and disgusted by the sight of the open chest and I also believe that he hadn’t expected that I would have to sew. Where should he have guessed that from? He had never dealt with healing magic before. I dozed off over these thoughts.

When Snape began to toss and turn restlessly, I immediately awakened and examined everything conscientiously. I renewed all the healing processes, got up and went to the bathroom, where I freshened myself up. On my return to the bedroom, Harry stood over Snape, who was now sleeping soundly again thanks to the potion.

“Hello, Harry. Do you want to use the bathroom?” I asked good-humoured, pleased that the wounds seemed to heal really well.

“Mh-hm. Hi, Hermione. Yes… I mean, do you think I may?” he said very insecurely and gave me a worried look.

“No, probably not. But what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him, so be quick!” I showed myself unconcernedly cheekily and shrugged casually.

“I don’t know. I mean, he will be angry enough about what happened!” he objected anxiously, looking worriedly down at the sleeper again.

“Don’t make a fuss and hurry up. Here!” I demanded briskly, holding open the door for him, beckoning him through, and he stepped into the really extraordinary-looking bath with eyes wide open in astonishment. I hoped Draco wouldn’t come back to see Snape today, I didn’t want that meeting to occur just yet. It was enough when Snape and Harry clashed, I didn’t need Harry and Draco to fight as well.

Knowing the professor was going to sleep for the next two hours, which would be good for him, I went into the living room and sat down on the couch.

“What wouldn’t I give for a cup of coffee?” I mumbled to myself as it suddenly plopped next to me and I really had to suppress a violent twitch.

“Dobby!” I exclaimed, perplexed, and the little house-elf flapped excitedly with the big bat-like ears. Those horrible socks that he wore, and that absolutely didn’t match, hurt my eyes.

“Miss! What is you doing in Professor Snape’s rooms?” piped the high, piercing voice of the house elf and I was really surprised to have him pop in right next to me so suddenly.

“I, well, I… Harry, nice that you are already here!” I exclaimed and thought only: Phew, my rescue! If Harry was there, the house-elf would forget me.

“Dobby!” Harry shouted in delight, a gleam of joy settling over his tired features.

“Harry Potter, sir! What is you doing here if Dobby may ask, sir?” Dobby showed his pleasure and hurried to Harry’s side.

“Dobby, don’t call me ‘sir’ all the time. It’s just ‘Harry’!” Harry shook his hand dramatically.

“Thank you, Mister Harry Potter!” He squeaked in a shrill tone and I rolled my eyes.

“What are we doing here? We had to help the professor. Nothing bad. Why are you here?” Harry softly asked the small, overexcited creature, who couldn’t hold still for a second.

“Someone here must has asked for something to eat or drink. Then always a house-elf will come!” the little guy explained business-like, wringing the clean tea towel that covered him.

“Oh, I wanted a coffee!” I spoke up and shrugged. I hadn’t known that before. You never seemed to stop learning here in Hogwarts.

“If so, I'll take one too, please. And er, Dobby, please don’t tell on us, that wouldn’t be good!” Harry implored when he sat down on the sofa again next to me.

“Mister Harry Potter does not need to worry. Dobby will not tell anyone that the Miss and Mister Harry Potter, sir, has been in the rooms of Professor Snape!” the house-elf responded eagerly, nodding wildly with his head, and then he disappeared in haste.

“Phew, Harry, that was smart of you,” I said with relief. He smiled mischievously. “But tell me, since when do you drink coffee? I thought you only like tea and chocolate?”

“I don’t know. Today I have a thirst for coffee! I wanted to try it!” His reply came a little bashfully. He gave me a sidelong glance.

“Say, Harry… Is it possible that we are beating around the bush?” I asked provocatively. Now he looked at me directly and a small smile seemed to tug at his lips.

“That’s possible, Hermione! I think I'm just not over it yet! All this ... having slept on Snape's couch and now sitting here and…” As if by magic, a tray appeared in front of us at that moment. Dobby also seemed to think we should eat something because he had added toast and various side dishes. “Wow, he is fast!”

“You are right. How do you like the coffee?” I wanted to know curiously. He had grabbed the cup and I knew people didn’t like the first sip, it was too bitter for them, but after that, we were all caffeine junkies, weren’t we? He smelled the beverage cautiously, then drank boldly and immediately grimaced with disgust.

“Uh, what's in it for you? That's bloody bitter.”

“Here, take a splash of milk. You too will most likely become addicted now!” I prophesied to him. He just shouldn’t listen to it, you all know about my nonexistent divination talent.

“How… how is he? … And did you actually sleep with him, next to him?” he wanted to know now, appearing uncomfortable. He swallowed visibly heavy.

“One thing after the other! It’s alright. When he wakes up later and gets up it will be alright. He will be able to teach. Only this time I’m going to suggest that he goes easy for a day, then it should be forgotten quickly. What do we have magic for? Oh, your shield magic must have been really powerful, the way the sutures had burst, so be happy! You are strong…” It came off emotionlessly and Harry's mouth was open as I spoke for the first time to him as I did with Snape and the cottage connection, as I called Draco, Blaise and the Twins in my head. “...and for your next question… Well, should I have slept on the floor? It was good that I was there because he woke me up before I went to the bathroom. He was very restless and I noticed that it was time for the next potions, spells and salves. I really have no desire to see it ripped open again!” I justified myself angrily, glaring at Harry; I hated to justify myself.

“Wow, Hermione, you can honestly scare me if you behave so vigorously! I hope you know that. Do you?” he said quite flatly.

“Yes, all right. What are you thinking about the whole thing now and what are we going to do about Ron and the Gryffindors?” I wanted to know and sipped on my hot drink.

“What… What do I know…? I don’t want to tell Ron, as I think the Professor would prefer if only the two of us knew and I want to respect his wishes. I owe that to him alone for calling him a liar for years and almost killing him! I don’t care about the Gryffindors, we’ll just stay silent!” he decided, while he showed a very unconventional profile. He stubbornly raised his chin, but determination was evident as well.

“Good, Harry, as you wish. Though what will we say to Ron?” I requested further and so far I liked what I heard.

“We say we spent the night in the Room of Requirement… If that’s alright with you?” he wanted to know, questioning carefully, because that it would be accompanied by rumours that we had done more than sleep was somehow logical. I nodded gently.

“That's okay. What about Snape?” I shrugged indifferently and proceeded to the next problem. “What about the memory, what do you think?”

“I don’t know yet, but you’ll be the first to hear about it. What do you think? I still don’t know what to think… As soon as I know I’ll go to you. Is that okay? It’s confusing me very much that everything is so different than what I expected. I don’t know what to think of it. Give me time…” he asked overwhelmed, looking at me insecurely, cracking his fingers uneasily.

“I’ll give you the freedom you need and hope that you understand me a bit better now?” Harry looked at me very seriously and just nodded to me. He didn’t get to respond as we heard noises from the open bedroom door and immediately tensed and got up.

“Professor Snape, you woke up just at the right time!” I entered the room with pretended cheerfulness and was faced with a surly, ill-humoured look from deep black eyes.

“You unbearable woman! Do you not have your own bed here at Hogwarts? Do you have to terrorize me?” he snarled coldly. At least he was feeling well enough that he could start with insults right away.

“I don’t know what you can remember. However, I think you should… love me!” I replied provocatively. I didn’t want to see Harry's expression upon this nice and oh so friendly conversation. He stood in my back and was still hidden, and probably horrified to the bone about how we talked with each other.

“Professor, you should know that Harry is waiting behind the threshold!” I informed him quickly then, before he said something that would reveal too much, asking for Draco for example.

“What?! What is Potter doing in my chambers? Have you lost your mind? Oh, I forgot, you never owned one in the first place!” he swore like a trooper. Too much sleep seemed to give the good professor too much strength; maybe I should poke into his chest if he continued to annoy me, I thought nastily! I looked at him calmly, which seemed to infuriate him additionally because my legs did not shake in front of his ire.

“Professor, keep your blood from boiling. You lost too much of it yesterday and I think you hate it as well to be an invalid for even one additional day!” I told him and I loved that word. I was so mean and, goddess, did that do me good. I can be vicious too, my dear. He seemed briefly speechless, as he now cried out firmly and harshly:

“Potter, come in!” He was struggling to sit more upright and I climbed onto that much too big bed to help him. “Stop it! I'm not a toddler, Miss Granger!” he hissed, glaring at me. I gave him a reassuring smile but also an icy look.

“You aren’t, sir, you are much too tall for that, but you behave like one!” I said silky, while I stuffed a pillow behind his back, conjured bandages and put everything in order when he briefly seemed struck dumb before he found his voice again.

“Miss Granger, I think you take too many liberties!” he thundered. I had gone deaf and now Harry stepped carefully to the bed and looked like a little schoolboy, hanging shoulders, hanging head; he looked as if he had taken a beating.

“And you, Potter, what did you get up to yesterday? I know you have seen memories that are none of your business! You impertinent brat!” Snape hissed in a low, threatening tone and seemed to want to kill Harry with his eyes. I wasn’t impressed by his rant and continued to treat him, pulling on his shoulders until he sat more upright so that I could tie the bandage around his chest. He let me do as I liked while he took Harry to task, who weathered Snape's exquisite mood with a lowered head. I found Harry's tactic just right. Keep it up, Harry, it'll drive him insane! I bit my cheek in an attempt not to laugh for Harry showed no reaction at all.

“Stand upright when I talk to you and not like a wet rag! Where is your respect? Don’t they teach you anything in the lions’ den? Or are you just learning how to roar nonsense?” he yelled now and noticed how Harry's body unconsciously tensed, he raised his shoulders, but his head stayed down. “What did you do when I lost consciousness after your attack?” Snape wanted to know now, miffed. Gosh, that was so good and impressive. He was sitting here in the bed, his upper body naked, only the bandage was wrapped around him and yet he dominated the situation totally and made us feel guilty about our shortcomings.

“I… I, sir, I got… help. I fetched Hermione, nothing more, sir!” stammered Harry, briefly overwhelmed, but then dared to say it after all. I could sense under my hands how the tension, which he had not shown on the outside, left Snape’s muscles when he heard this good news for him.

“Apparently, once in your life, you used the brain cells that you still possess, though it may be a miserable few…” he snarled spitefully. Hooray, he was approaching top form. He seemed to be doing really well; I was glad. “Miss Granger,” I now moved into the crushing focus. Oh no. I just finished work and was satisfied.

“Yes, sir?” Always polite, not that a vein burst and he got an aneurysm.

“How does it look like?” he asked briskly, to my astonishment.

“The truth? … Well, I would recommend staying in bed. Shh ... save your breath. I know that you won’t do it, so I advise you to take it slow, not jerky movements. Actually, it has healed very well. Tomorrow morning, the wound should have closed completely, but Harry's shield magic was very strong. It really tore everything open again, that's why you lost a lot of blood. I would suggest that you take two Blood-replenishing Potions throughout the day, then you should have everything replenished! So nice and slow, sir!” I advised him seriously and finished my rapport. I now looked at Harry, who still refused to raise his head.

“Miss Granger, I do not know why you think you can talk to me like that. If I get up here, you should see that you make yourself scarce, do you understand? Otherwise, you will regret having challenged me!” he breathed coldly and although he was injured, I wouldn’t put anything past him.

“Of course, sir!”

“And you, Mr Potter, can assume that I will not forget your insolence. I think Filch would still be too gentle and kind considering your offense! However, I think once a week should be appropriate, for the next month, so that you learn to master your temperament and how to be humble!”

“Yes, sir! As you wish, sir!” Harry spoke seriously and with a respect in his tone that amazed me. Snape too opened his eyes very wide, even if he otherwise maintained his cold mask.

“You two were here all night, Mr Potter?” Snape asked coolly.

“Yes, sir. But only Hermione was here with you, I was on the couch, sir!” Harry confessed quickly. Oh oh, Harry, you'll give good old Snape a serious shock if you continue to show yourself so submissive.

“I hope I do not need to point out to you that if you even tell your conscience about the happenings of last night, you will then wish you had never been born!” Snape hissed very, very viciously and intently his sincere threat.

“I wish that often, sir. But I would also promise you with a vow that I will not tell anyone!” he offered, looking up after his first words and staring at Snape, and, upright, made his offer of keeping silent.

Snape didn’t hesitate and cast the Credere Tacientiae, linking my name and his name with the secrecy spell that I had created. I didn’t say anything which was probably for the better, otherwise, I would risk him wringing my neck. Harry blinked behind his round metal-rimmed glasses like an owl and looked taken by surprise. I, too, hadn’t noticed Snape conjuring his wand.

“What, Potter? You have voluntarily agreed to remain silent! Or was it just casually said without thinking? With you Gryffindors, this is believed to happen often, that you speak first and think later!” the professor declared, indifferent to Harry's surprised appearance.

“Of course, sir, if you feel safer that way! And no, my offer was meant seriously and deliberately. I was just perplexed where your wand appeared from so quickly, I …” Harry had swiftly caught himself and was now explaining himself excessively, which tested Snape’s patience and he interrupted Harry rudely.

“I wish you to leave now, we'll talk another time,” Snape waved us away with his hand as if he were chasing away annoying flies.

“As you wish, sir!” Harry replied respectfully, turning away. However, when he was almost out, he turned around once more. “I wanted to apologise again, Professor.” He waited for no reaction and, fortunately, he just went on briskly and so did not experience the total freezing of Snape.

“Well, sir, even if you don’t like it, you seem to have made an impression on Harry... And do not look like that! No matter what punishments you impose on him now, he will not change his mind about you anytime soon. He can truly compete with your stubbornness.” I advised him, and I could tell exactly how much I bugged him. “... Should I keep quiet to Draco as well?” I whispered softly now that Harry was waiting for me in the living room.

“Yes. My godson doesn’t have to know everything,” he determined, taking a firm look at me.

“As you wish, sir. Please take care of yourself!” I whispered, got up myself and left.

“Harry, come on, we should finish breakfast in the Great Hall before Ron and the others get even more suspicious!”

“Yes, sure, Hermione, you are right!”

I closed the door behind us and left Snape to his thoughts, which certainly included our death.

End of Hermione’s POV

Snape’s POV

Finally, the two plagues had left me to my own devices. I thanked the gods! Damn, I felt like I had been run over. That had not been a simple shield spell Potter had unconsciously used. Whenever that idiotic, dumb boy did such a thing, at least I was reminded why he should be able to stand up to the Dark Lord. One thing I had to concede to him, as much as I would have liked to deny it, his spells were strong and powerful, unfortunately!

Now I growled again. At least he had fetched Granger and not the old fool, or any of the other annoying teachers, or even worse, that impertinent nurse!

With the Accio, I called the Prohibitio Sorbitio, the forbidden potion, to me and took a deep breath. This was a brilliant invention of mine that I developed sixteen years ago, after much research. I would take it today after a very, very long time, exactly two drops. The last time I had taken this potion had been around fifteen years ago.

I used the potion very carefully and sparingly because its effect was resounding. The cure of the worst and most stubborn injuries began immediately and instantaneously, irrespective of their origin. The problem with such ingenious inventions was, firstly, the potion was highly addictive, and secondly, the more often one took it, the more the strength of its healing power lessened.

Well, after nearly fifteen years the effect should be satisfactory, so I measured the drops accurately and swallowed them and ahhhrrrg... I had forgotten that it felt like icy water shooting through the veins as if sharp, ice-cold needles stung me. I closed my eyes in agony and breathed flatly as I fell back onto the bed.

The healing process began instantly. I felt the rips sewn by Granger fully merge and grow together. Hence, I took off my bandages, unwrapped them and watched as my skin closed and regenerated. This had been one of my more ingenious inventions. I had to heal completely; my recovery was already taking much too long from my point of view. It was humiliating enough that Potter, thanks to these unfortunate circumstances, had been able to surprise me. I hated such frailty; I had not developed this potion for nothing. How had I made such a mistake? I was still annoyed about the clash with the Order.

Potter, the little cur. His father had been a nail in my coffin and his son was taking the same line. I groaned with suffering and closed my eyes in agony, sinking back into the pillows as I considered this. Potter, what should I think of this child with a hero syndrome? Whatever he thought, I had never understood what was going on in that frighteningly empty mind.

What was going on with Potter? Did he want to mock me with his perpetual ‘sir’? He should try that! But something in those green eyes did not express the same mockery as usual. What had changed?

Potter seemed to take the memory seriously. It was one of my worst, for it was one of the most humiliating and the one with the most fatal consequences. The following weekend, in Hogsmeade, I had met with Lucius and finally sealed my fate. This young peacock was already twenty-one when I was fifteen, so he was in the thick of life. He had been ‘happily’ married to Narcissa for two years and had worked with his father Abraxas in the family empire, purposefully pursuing his own interests in the ministry on the side.

Thanks to the families Prince and Malfoy, we knew each other well and were closely related, but we had also been close friends for years, despite the age gap, as we two had realised very early that we shared the same interests. Magically, of course, but we also had the same sense of humour and Lucius saw in me something like a toy that he had to build up to give it more confidence. Also, I was mentally very precocious and could keep up. It has always been one of my gifts that I was more mature mind-wise.

My mother, Eileen, had married Tobias Snape, a Muggle, in an inexplicable lapse of taste. She had more than tainted the family honour of the Princes, she had terminated it and that was ... fatal. She was the last of the family and with her decision, she had been obliterated from the family tree. Her father had not immediately forced my mother to marry a pureblood after graduation. Something Grandmother Honoria had never forgiven him, for Eileen had gotten stupid ideas. She had practised her potions talent and married late and a Muggle for good measure.

A man that made me want to cast the Avada even now when I thought of him.

Despite the banishment of my mother, my grandmother showed great interest in me because I was the last in line, the only one left. Whatever mother had done, I was the heir and so my grandmother taught me the values and knowledge of the Purebloods, even though I was just a despicable Halfblood. Although Honoria did not see her daughter Eileen again in all her life, I spent the majority of the first seven and a half years of my life with Honoria Prince. After the first unintentional burst of my magic at the age of a few months, my mother had repeatedly and with increasing frequency packed me off to my grandmother. My dad had not liked me, the screaming toddler, and he could not be bothered with magic, so Mother had finally taken me away for my own protection.

It was not until Honoria died when I was eight years old that I had to persevere in my parents' household at Spinner's End for almost two years. What a punishment! Previously, I had only spent three or four months a year here, which had already given me a hard time. These memories of my early childhood were anything but nice, because here I experienced abuse, neglect and physical violence. I had barely been able to wait for Hogwarts! When I had finally attended Hogwarts, the situation at home had become increasingly unbearable. Fortunately, I only had had to go home during the holidays and even then I had only returned during the summer holidays. Father had become more and more brutal, vicious and drunken. I despised him for what he did to my mother, who put up with everything he did.

When she had suddenly and surprisingly passed away in my fourth year, I had been positively glad for her to leave this martyrdom behind as she would finally find peace and quiet. The holidays that summer had been a disaster of unimaginable proportions. We had hated each other fervently. Without the division provided by my mother, this had become dramatically visible and I had been exposed to his anger and brutality unprotected. Only then I had realised how much my mother had protected me! My father and I had clashed in such a way that no one went out of the fight unscathed. I had hurled myself to Lucius hurt like I had been, spending the rest of the holidays with him. No ten horses would have brought me back to this tyrant of a father.

Honoria had been a born Malfoy, Abraxas being her ten years younger brother and they had had - incredible but true - a close relationship, even though they had been Malfoys. When the mother of both had died in childbirth, Honoria had taken on the role of mother for Abraxas and with that, they had gotten very close, so I had been welcome in Malfoy Manor during the time I had spent with Honoria and had visited often.

Lucius had seen in me, the boy five years younger, the brother that his mother had never given him and so we had become close friends. He had clearly shown this to me when, at only thirteen, he had given me the honour of becoming his best man. Because, as he had said, unfortunately only I could keep up with his intelligence and brilliance and I just could not outperform him, since I was younger. Luckily, Narcissa and he had gotten married at Christmas, so it had been no problem for me to go to the Manor with him and tell my parents I would stay at school. My vicious father would never have agreed with that, and mother, no matter how much she had loved me, had never been able to stand up to Tobias Snape.

Well, that explained our intimate relationship. As fate would have it, I had met Lucius in Hogsmeade the weekend after the humiliation by Potter. When he had seen my anger and resentment, he had said, even though I was still young, almost too young, I would be ready to take the next step. Therefore, he had told me about the Dark Lord, his goals but also about his followers and he had revealed his Dark Mark to me.

I had been surprised. But when he had told me that Abraxas, who had attended school with the Lord, was a marked follower himself, my interest had been more than awakened. Lucius had suggested that in the next few weeks, until the holidays when I would come to the Manor, I should decide if I wanted an audience with the Dark Lord. He would make it possible for me. When I had discreetly pointed out that I did not know if I could come since I had to go back to my despised father and would only be able to escape after I had been beaten black again to seek protection with the Malfoys. Then Lucius had just laughed coldly and had said that I should not worry, he would take care of his ‘little brother’. I do not like to say it, but I had been glad to hear that there were people who liked me and wanted to take care of me.

On the last day of school before the holidays, I had received an owl that brought a white parchment with a mourning ribbon along the edges to the breakfast table of Slytherin. I have never felt such deep inner joy and satisfaction in my life as on this day when I received the news that my father had died. I had been so happy, it was like a load accumulated over decades fell off my shoulders. Finally, I had been free and would no longer need to suffer under this man, who had already soured the too short life of my mother. How he had died had not interested me at all. In the years to come Lucius had told me casually that he had taken care of it. I had only nodded then. When I had gotten my inheritance I had learned all about it, but that had not happened until years later.

The second owl that had sailed for me on that day had been from the Ministry, informing me that Abraxas would be my guardian and administer my Muggle inheritance as he had been managing the Princes’ inheritance since the death of Honoria, and I would be able to claim the inheritance upon my majority. Well, all this had not really affected me.

Thus I had boarded the train in high spirits and relaxed for the first time since I had started attending Hogwarts, having escaped the subjugation to my father, and went on vacation as a free person. I had enjoyed this short time of freedom. When I had returned via the Hogwarts Express at the end of the vacation, I had already traded this freedom for another bond of servitude. The hasty and erroneous decisions of the youth!

For on Malfoy Manor I had received my audience and had been able to enthral the Dark Lord with my knowledge and ability. Oh yes, I was a very gifted wizard and potions brewer. So he had sent me through hard physical and mental training sessions, and although I had been the youngest participant, I had beaten everyone, which had earned me the undivided attention of the Lord. I had chosen to do more for myself and my body since the humiliation by Potter and Black, and since that incident, I had been working hard to conquer my body with my will. At the end of the holidays, you had been able to see the first, impressive successes.

Though that had changed nothing and everything at the same time. The Lord had made an exception for me and on the last day I had spent at the Manor, he had deigned to mark me. He had burned the Dark Mark into my flesh and had made me the youngest existing Death Eater at the tender age of fifteen since I had not been sixteen until the ninth of January.

Oh, and I had felt great! I had arrived at Hogwarts as a completely new person. I had changed not just physically. Thanks to the Malfoys I had been clad in smart, noble and expensive clothes, which my father had never granted me, although we had not been poor. But he had been an old scrooge. I had not wanted anything conspicuous; I had already found then, according to my style, noble fabrics in simple black appropriate for me because I had always preferred to linger in dark corners. Also, I had radiated a new, until then unrecognized self-confidence. I had become even more aware of myself during the training of my magical power and strength and so I behaved then, always in the background but still confidently.

My previous uncertainty had completely fallen away from me. I also had devoted myself completely and thoroughly to the darkness, the black magic and its lure. This had been my declared goal from then on and I had also communicated that unconsciously. Where some had avoided me before for being the crazy swot, they avoided me afterwards because they feared the darkness, which I brought with me, which had been alright with me. I had not been a philanthropist, never had been, never would be.

In my sixth year, I learned a lot. Finally, after Black's last idiotic act, when he had told me how to get past the Whomping Willow, so that I could follow Lupin, and I had actually taken up the chase, while that jerk of Potter was thinking he needed to protect and save me from the mad creature, I had only hated this twit all the more. After all, I could have killed the werewolf.

I had committed my first murder at Christmas in my last school year. For the first time, I had cast the unforgivable Killing Curse and had felt good. So, slowly, but steadily, I had become the dangerous man I was today. Even Potter and his cohorts had withdrawn more and more and had no longer tried to annoy me or humiliate me after I had not been intimidated by them having a werewolf in their ranks. Rather, they had feared that I could betray them to the press and the Ministry. They had treated me with disregard in our last year. It had been alright with me, and it had seemed that at that time Potter had only one thing in mind anyway: to indulge his love for Lily Evans.

Lily Evans, Lily Potter!

Here I interrupted my mental trip down memory lane brusquely and stood up with determination. You should not rake up the past too much. I walked resolutely to the door. I would take care of Potter one way or another, I decided.

End of Snape’s POV
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