A/N: We're at it again, except this time, we decided to do a scene with Lockhart and Snape. My friend Madelyn is the brilliant Snape, and I am Lockhart. *bows* Enjoy!

Snape He clenched his pumpkin juice-filled chalice so tightly, sallow knuckles had turned a ghostly white. Every student in the Great Hall (and a few professors) received a look that would have dropped them dead, were such a thing possible without magic or a well-concealed long range weapon (both of which he had, but was loathe to use in front of witnesses). From the terrified looks that greeted his gaze, it seemed obvious no one would be asking for any sort of potion recipe for the rest of the term. He then looked back to the obnoxious fop, wishing Albus did not know how to trace the untraceable poisons. If not for the Headmaster's keen knowledge of such things, Severus was quite certain he could make Lockhart suffer in more ways than even Professor Vector could count.

Lockhart Everything was going just as planned, as he knew it would. He looked perfect, of course, and he could tell the students simply loved his Valentine's Day surprise. The look on Potter's face was enough to show him that. On top of that, he was sure Snape was enjoying this, and that his own personal dwarf wouldn't fail to get his Valentine to Snape.

Snape Severus went back to scowling at his pumpkin juice, wishing this night would simply end- even if that did require a general state of impending doom. After a few moments, he noticed the entire Great Hall had grown quiet and seemed to be focusing their collective attention at him. Or rather, the diminutive dwarf dressed up like some Cupid in the service of a warlike deity that was now clearing his throat to get Snape's attention. "What do you want?" he hissed out between clenched teeth. Obviously it was some question of directions, since no person wishing to keep their internal organs intact would dare send him such a garish display of their stupidity. Instead, the dwarf took a deep breath and began... reciting poetry?

Cupid's Little Helper

"There once was a Potions Master named Snape,

whose eyes were like the darkest depths of a lake.

If you would be mine,

It would be simply divine-

For I, Gilderoy Lockhart, have fallen for a snake.

Your fashion is awfully Goth,

And your look is really quite hot.

It's an indisputable fact,

You look handsome in black-

I'm drawn to you like a flame draws a moth.

"Happy Valentine's Day from your not-so-secret admirer, Gilderoy Lockhart," having completed his job, the dwarf ran like the hounds of Hell nipped his heels to avoid the wrath of Severus Snape- who was simply sitting in his chair with an expression mixing shock and horror in the extreme.

Lockhart Uh oh. His dwarf had finally come in, ready to give Snape the Valentine. He hadn't planned on being around when it happened; it was best to approach these things, Snape, that is, after they had occurred. Oh well, the dwarf was already singing. My poem is brilliant, he thought to himself, smiling the smile that won him five awards, soon to be a sixth, he knew. Why was that dwarf running away so quickly? It was hardly professional! He supposed that didn't matter, since Snape's expression clearly showed how happy he was to receive such a wonderful Valentine from such a handsome man. Walking with as much grace and poise as he could summon, he went over to Snape, his smile widening with each step. "How did you like the Valentine?"

Snape There was simply no way to recover from this embarrassment. It happened in front of the entire Great Hall, and if he didn't act soon, no amount of scowling would prevent the flood of laughter. If there was one thing Snape would not abide, it was someone mocking him. From the look on Potter's face, this would be used as ammunition for years to come. There was only one way to avoid the inevitable roar of mirth, and that was to replace it with stunned silence. Gathering every last bit of dignity he had somehow managed to keep despite his employers and associates, Severus stood up and addressed Gilderoy. He did not address him with words, but with an action that showed just how blindingly fast the Potions Master could move when inspired. In a flash, he had closed the distance between himself and the insufferable pouf, and proceeded to take Gilderoy Lockhart into his arms and give him the most passionate kiss he could muster. Acting as if it was nothing out of the ordinary, Snape backed away and casually said, "Meet me in the dungeons in five minutes. We can discuss things further in private." Giving a polite nod to Albus, Severus excused himself and slowly walked to his sanctuary, relieved to hear that not a single giggle, snort, or guffaw came from the Great Hall for the entire trip.

Lockhart Astounded as everyone else in the Hall, Lockhart had to blink a few times before he could move an inch. That had been the most wonderful, breathtaking he had ever received, including the one from the radical fan in Diagon Alley a year ago. Five minutes, five minutes. Well, it would take at least three to get down there if he ran. Flashing a smile at everyone in the Great Hall, he dashed out, running quickly to his office to check his hair. It could use a good curl, but he didn't have the time. After rapidly brushing his teeth until they sparkled more than ever and throwing on his best dress robes - a bright red color, reserved for the most deserving viewers - he headed down to the dungeons. Anticipation was making his heart beat like a jackhammer. This was it! Snape was finally going to reveal his unspoken love. He suddenly found himself at the door to Snape's office. He knocked quickly, putting on his best smile as he waited for Severus.

Snape He paced the dungeon in precise, measured steps. What now? While it was true that he had gone to great lengths to save face, it was also true that the ploy had worked. Now everyone thought he and Lockhart were involved. The mental image alone would prevent most people from uttering a single word about it, of that he was certain. There was a small amount of amusement in seeing the crestfallen looks on many of the students faces. It was one thing to know that your celebrity crush was spoken for, it was quite another to know you didn't even have the right gender to be a consideration. Miss Granger seemed particularly heartbroken, near tears in fact. From the way Mr. Ron Weasley whispered in her ear, she would be distraught for quite some time. He may not like that particular Gryffindor, but it was refreshing to see the boy knew how to properly shove something in another's face and gloat. Pulled out of such thoughts by a knock at the door, Snape called out, "It is unlocked. Come in and lock the door behind you, if you would." Now it was time to deal with the rest of this scenario.

Lockhart At the sound of Snape's voice, Lockhart began to feel just a little nervous. Not much, of course; he was fearless, after all. Doing as he was told, Lockhart opened the door, avoiding Snape's eyes as he entered. It wouldn't do to let Severus know just how excited he was. Even after that kiss, he would still have to play hard-to-get. Otherwise, he would look like a regular tramp. He locked the door and turned to smile in a rather dim way at Snape.

Snape Severus looked over at Gilderoy, noting a single drop of sweat was forming at the man's left temple. He was visibly shaken and nervous. Good. Snape planned to teach Lockhart a very important lesson, maybe several. "Glad to see you can follow basic instructions, Lockhart. Now then, how long have you harbored these... feelings for me?" He looked over his collection of preserved ingredients, occasionally pausing to take a container down and study it in earnest, "Is this some sort of passing fancy, or something that has been brewing for some time?"

Lockhart Of all things! He certainly hadn't been expecting an inquiry from Severus, but perhaps he ought to have learned to expect the unexpected from Snape. He would probably have to humour the man for awhile before he received a direct confession of love from him. "Well, they're very strong feelings, you must realize. It's very hard to p-pinpoint the time they began," he managed, trying not to stutter.

Snape Snape smirked as the fop struggled to properly form a thought into words. He was usually so insufferably confident, it was good to see the wizard shaken. "Strong feelings you say? How... interesting. Let us see just how strong these feelings of yours are, shall we?" After carefully placing the preserved human heart back upon the shelf, Severus closed the distance between he and Lockhart and glowered down at the nervous man. Offering a look that had brought Death Eaters to cower and beg for their pitiful lives, Snape spoke, "Just what is it you want from me, Lockhart? Do you want sonnets and proclamations of love undying? Perhaps just a quick shag to notch your belt?" He leaned down and placed one long finger beneath Gilderoy's strong jaw line, "Or is it something else? Poetry at brunch, songs sung by starlight? What desires are floating about in that mind of yours?" His smile became dark and vicious as he held the wizard to his gaze. end

Lockhart Well. Another unexpected something. Severus was getting downright creepy! The hearts in jars were understandable, but honestly, now he was getting obsessive, in a stalker-like way. That smoldering passion in his expression clearly stated his mutual feelings, and yet he still wouldn't admit it? The man was utterly submissive and full of passion, obviously willing to do anything and everything he wished. He simply couldn't take advantage of a man in such a state – well, unless he was persuaded by large amounts of alcohol. Trying to be gentle and not upset the Severus, he said, "Severus, tell me, what do you really want? I don't want you to feel obligated to do anything for my sake, darling."

Snape For a moment, his face went completely blank, devoid of any emotion. And then, he began to laugh, "You... think I was offering those things? Merlin, you do have quite the imagination." After recovering from that bit of mirth, he addressed Gilderoy once more, "Do you really think me the sort to enjoy such idiotic frivolities as poetry and love notes? Do I look like the sort of man that fancies any sort of romantic notion?" His eyes narrowed, "You wouldn't like to have me truly 'fancy' you, trust me. My tastes don't touch roses and sunshine, I prefer more dark expressions..." his eyes trailed to the assortment of blades on his desk, "... more painful expressions." That should shake the twit up a bit more. Besides, it wasn't as if Snape was being dishonest- if anything he was being more forthright than he had been in quite some time.

Lockhart Poor Severus, living in such denial. It was such a typical macho kind of denial on top of that, afraid to show any emotion. The poor man must have lived like this for years, Lockhart realized, suddenly full of pity. Why was he looking at those knives? Lockhart wondered if Severus was into that new trend, S&M or whatever they were calling it. Well, it wouldn't hurt to try something new. What kind of man would he be if he were afraid of something like that? "Severus, Severus," he said slowly. "You don't have to be afraid to let your feelings show! A man shouldn't be ashamed to show affection!"

Snape Merlin, this man was a moron. Snape decided he would need to find a way to end this, before Gilderoy pushed it too far, "It would never work. I can not be with anyone due to a certain... dangerous occupation that I have outside of Hogwarts." Knowing Gilderoy would never stop pushing until having every detail, he offered, "I will tell you, but only if you allow me to place you under the secret keeper spell." The desire to play with what little mind Lockhart possessed a bit longer was strong, but his more practical side knew this needed to be dealt with quickly.

Lockhart A dangerous occupation? Well, that might be hard to work through, but he was sure he could deal with whatever it was. True love went beyond little complications, after all. Well, if they were ever to have a true relationship, he would have to know what it was Severus did. "Oh, tell me, Severus! I'm certain it won't be anything we can't work through - we're in love, aren't we?"

Snape Severus quickly performed the spell, nodding when the tell-tale shimmer ignited in the air around Lockhart, "All right." Rolling up his sleeve, Snape showed the pale Dark Mark shining upon his skin like a scar, "I am a spy, working for certain interested parties to ensure Voldemort and his followers are brought down. I have been such a spy for years. I have to attend Dark Revels and associate with the highest members of the Death Eaters whenever the interested parties demand. I'm sure you can now see why being involved with anyone is not an option." His tone remained flat, as though commenting on the weather.

Lockhart A spy! Well, that explained a lot. It was also rather appealing. He wondered if Snape ever wore leather like the Muggle spies on the television. He smiled, sure now that they could make this work. It was only a job, nothing he couldn't deal with. "Why, Severus, that's wonderful! Just the kind of thing I would do for the cause! You're being awfully silly about this, you know. Do you really think it's enough to make me leave you? Oh, we can be together, Severus. You don't have to be afraid."

Snape He gripped the bridge of his nose and thought about his next choice of words very carefully, "Gilderoy, you may not be aware of this- but Voldemort is working to come back. His spirit was at this very school last year, living as a parasite on Quirrel. It is likely that he will have his own body in a few years. If I know one thing about Voldemort it is this- the man is near impossible to kill and doesn't stop once he's set his mind to something. This means I will be going from working to find small groups of uncaptured Death Eaters, to fully embracing the role of one of Voldemort's faithful once again. This is not a pleasant job. As a matter of fact, it is the most unpleasant thing I have ever had the misfortune to endure. I may get a kick out of the darker desires, but having the Cruciatus performed on me at regular intervals is not what I would call a good time." He sat down at his desk and felt very tired, as though he had aged a good ten years in the course of this confession. In some small way, it did feel good to get this burden off his chest.

Lockhart Voldemort, Death Eaters! This man must have suffered quite a bit in his lifetime. He only wished he could do more to heal Severus's wounds. Love wasn't enough if Severus wouldn't accept it. In an attempt to comfort Snape, Lockhart went to him and put his arms around him, hoping this would help in some way. He backed away quickly, however, as the knives were nearby, and he wasn't sure if he wanted to experiment with anything like that at the moment. "I'm sorry I can't do anything more for you, Severus. I'm quite useless. I suppose I should go, unless…" He trailed off, still hanging onto the hope that Severus would have a change of heart and ask him to stay.

Snape He didn't want to admit that it was nice to get a sign of affection from someone, and he certainly did not want to admit it was enjoyable to get affection from Gilderoy. But there it was. Severus realized how long it had been since anyone had done something so simple as just putting their arms around him, and came close to breaking down. It was asinine that such a small thing should get him so... emotional. It was just a damned hug, for Merlin's sake! It was a meaningless expression people gave to prove they somehow 'really cared' about others. It was without worth. Snape worked so hard to convince himself of this, that he neglected to notice when one tear formed at his eye and fell to his robes.

Lockhart He saw the tear fall from Snape's eye and was touched. He seriously doubted that Severus ever let this side of himself show, based on his unwillingness to show any signs of affection. He wished again that he could do something for Severus's obvious emotional pain, but for lack of original thought, the only thing he knew to do was offer another hug. "Severus," he asked, stepping closer to Snape, "Are you all right?"

Snape He looked up at him in a mixture of irritation and puzzlement, "Why did you do that?" Severus had trouble accepting that a man as selfish and egotistical as Lockhart would do something purely out of concern for another person. It seemed so contrary to what he knew of the man. Although loathe to admit it, Severus silently hoped that Gilderoy would press his luck and embrace him... just once more. So he could make out what the pouf was up to. No other reason, just... personal curiosity

Lockhart Why? Wasn't it obvious? "I didn't know what else I could do for you…you seemed so…sad. Terribly sad." He inched closer still, wondering if Severus would be upset if he hugged him again. He seemed to need a hug, but that didn't matter if he didn't want one.

Snape He warily eyed Lockhart, "Of course I wasn't happy; it wasn't as if I was discussing happy topics. If you think that was depressing, I should tell you about the rest of my life sometime." He wondered why Gilderoy was edging ever closer, and decided to just stay where he was until the skittish wizard made his intentions clear. It was only a detached wonder, and not some wish for further contact that kept him rooted to the spot. That is what he told himself, anyhow.

Lockhart "I'm sorry," he said simply, eyeing Severus with concern. What else did the man want? From the sounds of it, his rotten luck in life had been of his own doing, and he didn't seem to want pity anyway. Still, it made his heart ache to see Severus so upset. Once again, he went to Snape and hugged him, regardless of any unpleasant consequences it might result in.

Snape This time he leaned against Gilderoy and returned the embrace, nestling his face against golden hair and drawing in the heavy scent of honeysuckle. It was like enjoying a decadent sweet, although left him feeling much more conflicted and anxious. What was the harm in this? As he had told himself, it was a meaningless action. Despite the robes being a lurid color that did not agree with his eyes at all, they were rather plush and soft. Severus usually did not enjoy such trappings of comfort, but now seemed different. There was something relaxing about Gilderoy's manner and scent, which seemed to worm its way through every defense he had so carefully built. There was an odd taste on his lips, and he realized that the earlier kiss with Lockhart had left a thin layer of vanilla-flavored gloss upon his own lips. Severus finally closed his eyes and completely relaxed against his companion, just enjoying the moment for what it was. Whatever it was.

Lockhart He smiled, greatly surprised that Snape reacted so well to his gesture of affection. Lockhart simply held the man as he relaxed, knowing somehow that this was what Severus needed. It was becoming increasingly obvious that Severus truly was in denial of his own feelings, and Gilderoy was sure that if he just kept it up, Severus would finally come around.

Snape He stayed there for many moments, losing track of time. He was beginning to pick up undertones to Gilderoy's scent, there was a subtle touch of several spices... cinnamon? Severus also began noticing the embroidery on the scarlet robes, delicate stitches placed there by a skilled hand. He didn't recognize the particular design, and noticed that although his companion's hands were well-manicured, they had signs of calluses being carefully polished away. Could Gilderoy have made such elegant designs? Surely not. He moved back a bit, to look at forget-me-not blue eyes, "Did you add the embroidery yourself?" Snape's arms remained around the other wizard, having found a comfortable resting point.

Lockhart He grinned, happy that someone -- Snape, especially -- noticed the delicate embroidery. It had taken him at least a month to finish the design on these robes. "Yes, I did add the embroidery. Do you like it?" he asked, not sure why he was asking for Severus's approval. Snape was likely to say he hated it, though Gilderoy figured that was unlikely, considering the arms that still rested comfortably around him.

Snape He looked at Gilderoy and dryly remarked, "To be honest, I despise the color, the cut looks like it was made in a rush, and the fit is too loose. But..." his tone became softer, "... the embroidery is quite beautiful. Probably worth more than the entire robe itself. Let me guess, you bought the robe but added the details?" What was he doing? His arms were around the ponce of Hogwarts, and he was discussing sewing? It was surreal, and made him momentarily wonder if he had fallen out of his chair and knocked himself unconscious before Lockhart had even arrived. Why was he suddenly so friendly with this pouf? Maybe he was actually in Madame Pomfrey's clinic and this was all a fever dream. Maybe he really had been put in Azkaban for life, and this was some insane delusion. Severus visibly shuddered at the last theory, as it was one that haunted his days and nights with more frequency than he was apt to admit.

Lockhart He was happy enough to know that Snape admired the embroidery, never mind his thoughts on the robe itself. Gilderoy took great pride in his sewing, though he was very rarely recognized for it. He felt Severus shiver slightly against him, and his brow wrinkled with concern. This man was just full of problems, wasn't he? "What's the matter, Severus?" he asked gently, watching the man's pale face intently.

Snape He focused back on the here and now, "It... was just a bit if my past bothering me. It does that from time to time, as I'm sure everyone has moments of regret or... discomfort concerning such matters. Nothing to worry about." He reached up and stroked his hand against Gilderoy's cheek before really thinking about it. His eyes darted to the hand, as though wondering if it had somehow become possessed. What in the many levels of Hell had come over him? Why was he touching Gilderoy like this, and how in Merlin's name did the man get his skin to feel like that? It was almost softer than silk and so warm to the touch. Collecting himself, Severus quickly drew his hand back onto the armrest.

Lockhart He held Severus a bit more tightly, wishing for the umpteenth time tonight that he could do something more to help. His breath caught in his throat as Severus's hand came up to caress his cheek. Why, oh, why did the man have to drag this out? Why couldn't he just admit what he felt? Sighing, he decided he would have to take matters in his own hands and shorten the situation. "Severus, do you want me to leave?"