Thank you to everyone who responded and encouraged me to post. Luckily a compromise presented itself. Corgi was kind enough to offer to beta for me until Saavik returned. Thank you!!! is the next chapter. I hope it is ok. I have to warn you is a dark chapter and has child abuse so if this bothers you please don't read this chapter. It is not imperative to the story but I think it gives a glimpse into Snape's character.

Oh before I forget I DON"T OWN THEM.


Albus raced into the room to find Severus huddled into a tight ball obviously engaged in a horrible nightmare. He suspected that today's events would be too much for the younger wizard and would bring back memories that were best forgotten. Unfortunately he was unable to let him take any of the dreamless sleeping draught because the boy had already become addicted to it. The potion was great to help for emergencies but was very addictive. With long term use it could build up in the system and cause serious health problems and even death. Poppy had informed him that Severus' level was so high that he could not risk letting him have anymore. He was already at a critical level.

The older wizard sat down on the bed beside the young man he considered his son and slowly stroked the boy's hair and talked softly to him trying to bring him out of the nightmare that had him trapped. He watched as the body tightened beneath his hand. He then had to restrain the younger wizard when he started to thrash around. Dumbledore had tears forming in his own eyes. It was heart wrenching to hear the screams and to watch the young man fight off old demons.


Severus laid his head back on the seat and tried to let the motion of the train relax his frazzled nerves. He had made it through his first year at Hogwarts and was unfortunately on his way home.

"Hey kid, you ok?" Lucius asked his cousin with concern. "You only have to hang in there for one week and then you get to come to my house. My father will be gone most of the time so it will only be us and my mum." He added hoping to cheer up the morose boy in front of him.

"No, I am not ok." The smaller dark haired boy admitted in a whisper. "Right before I left, Professor McGonagall told me that I had top marks in all of my other classes but that I did not pass transfiguration. She told me that because of my age, I was just not old enough to be ready for that type of magic. She said that she would be more than happy to give me extra instruction over the summer and that by the start of next term I should be able to be caught up."

The older boy watched the smaller boy shake in fear. He knew that the boy's father would be angry. He would not accept that the failure was due to Severus' young age but would automatically feel that his son didn't try hard enough. In that regard both of their father's were the same. They expected nothing but perfection from their heirs. "Maybe Uncle Salazar won't find out before he leaves, and then you would be at school by the time he does." He stated with not much conviction.

"Yeah, maybe." Sev stated in a small voice before once again laying his head back and closing his eyes.

Lucius could think of nothing else to say to help the boy feel better. He knew that more than likely his uncle would find out and there was no telling how bad his reaction was going to be. With nothing left to say that could possibly help the situation he leaned over and scooped the smaller boy into his arms and settled him to rest back on his lap. Ever since they were little he was more of an older brother then anything else to Severus and it hurt him that he was unable to do anything to help. The only thing he could do was offer comfort and to show him the affection that the boy's father wouldn't.

After what felt like only minutes, the two boys could feel the train start to slow down. Severus let out a small whimper when he realized that they must be at Kings Cross station. He looked up at Lucius with terror filled eyes.

"Be brave kid. You will be ok. Just remember to be strong and don't let him see your fear. Just keep reminding yourself that you will be with me in one week." He stated as he lovingly caressed the terrified boys cheek. "Lets not make him wait or he will only be angrier." He whispered before guiding Severus out of the compartment.

As soon as Severus stepped down from the platform he locked eyes with his father. In that moment he knew that his father must have already been informed. He was so paralyzed in fear he almost missed the gentle squeeze to his arm. He turned his gaze away from his angry father and looked into the compassionate eyes of his cousin. With a nod to indicate that he was ok, he slipped on the mask he had learned to perfect for survival. His eyes hardened and a sneer crossed his face as he looked around. To anyone that would care to glance his way, all they would see was the superior attitude that all Malfoy's and Snape's were expected to have.

Salazar narrowed his eyes and watched as his son slowly made his way over to him. To everyone else, the boy seemed unconcerned but he knew the boy well enough to pick up on the small signs of his nervousness. 'Good' he thought to himself. 'The boy should be nervous.' He had a lot to discuss with the brat when they got home. Without a word to his son, he reached out and grabbed his son's arm. He squeezed the boy's arm tightly, digging his nails into tender flesh and then apparated them both to the Snape manor.

"Go to the study!" He snarled in a cold voice. "Now!" He shouted when he saw the boy hesitate in fear.

Severus' face drained of all color. He knew immediately what would be in store for him. It was always the same when he was ordered to the study. He lost all of the calm composure he had faked in that instant. With a small whimper of fear he pleaded with the older wizard. "Please father..don't. Let me explain." He knew better then to argue with his father when the man was in this kind of mood but he couldn't help himself.

Salazar couldn't believe the audacity of the child. He was infuriated that the boy was talking back instead of obeying him. Without a word he struck the small boy across the face knocking him to the floor. He then yanked him to his feet and frog marched him to the designated room. "You know what to do. Get busy." He instructed the trembling child.

Severus knew all to well what was expected of him. Not wanted to anger his father anymore he slowly removed his robe and draped it across the chair. He then quickly kicked off his shoes and slipped out of his shirt and trousers. When his pleading look went unanswered he leaned over the desk and waited for the inevitable. He chocked back a sob when he realized his father had transformed a quill that was lying on the desk into a small wispy cane.

Salazar watched as his son flinched at the swishing noise the cane made. He knew out of all the punishments he had ever given the boy this was the one he seemed to fear the most. Salazar Snape wanted nothing more than to be able to present his only heir to the dark lord soon. He had been excited and full of hope for his son when he was accepted into Hogwarts early.

The older wizard could feel the power that emanated from the child and knew that Voldemort would be pleased with having him as an addition to his fold. Bringing such a powerful young wizard to the dark lord would have guaranteed Salazar favor with Voldemort. That was why when he had spoken to the headmistress over the floo network he had become enraged when he learned that his son had failed transfiguration. Of course she tried to tell him some rubbish about the boy being too young. That was ludicrous. Anybody with any sense at all could feel the power the boy possessed. In Salazar's mind, there was no other explanation other than the boy had not tried. Well he was about to give the boy incentive to try harder. If he had to beat the laziness out of him then he would.

It took a few seconds for the pain to register after the first blow landed across Severus' back. He bit his tongue to keep from crying out. He had learned a long time ago that it would only make things worse if he cried.

The blows continued to rain down on his back, bottom, and legs. The whole ordeal was made worse because he could never anticipate where the next strike would land. Soon it felt as if his entire body was burning. Eventually he lost count of the number of times that he was struck and could hold in his cries no longer. He began to yelp when the welts were raised again and eventually sobbed out in pain.

"What have I told you about crying? You are nothing but a pathetic excuse for a wizard. This pain is nothing. I will show you true pain boy!" He screamed and then took out his wand and aimed it at his son. "Crucio!"

Severus screamed and fell to the floor when the curse hit him. The pain was like nothing he had experienced before. It made the previous beating feel like it was a joke. He felt as if his skin was slowly being ripped from his body. He screamed so loudly and for so long that his throat felt raw and his voice was nothing but a hoarse rasp. He knew that his father would not stop until he stopped crying so he bit his tongue until he drew blood to keep from crying out.

......End Dream.....

Severus woke with a start and felt a hand gently stroking his hair and heard the quiet soothing words that the older wizard was whispering in his ear. Before he could open his mouth a calming potion was tipped to his lips and he drank it greedily. When he finally calmed down he turned his head and looked into the compassionate eyes of the headmaster. Without a word he leaned his head onto the old man's chest and sobbed. He clung to the robes like a drowning man desperately holding on to a life preserver. He poured out the tears and anguish that he had refused to release since that night after his first year. He had learned his lesson well and had never shed another tear after that incident.

Albus just let the boy cling to him. He slowly rocked him and continued to utter the soothing words. He reassured the young man that he was loved and that he was safe. Albus didn't let up until he felt the body relax. "Would you like a bath and then something to eat child?" He whispered why still stroking the fine silky hair.

Without uttering a word, Severus just gave a shake of his head. He was grateful for the comfort the older wizard was offering and wasn't ready to be left alone yet.

Sensing what the problem was the headmaster continued. "I won't leave. I will stay right there with you." Without waiting for an answer he levitated the young wizard up onto his feet and then slowly guided him into the bath. He turned his head and let the younger man take care of himself but continued to softly speak to the boy so that he would not feel alone. When he heard the young man get out of the bath he summoned some clothes and handed them to him.

When Severus was dressed he gently led him to the outer room and summoned some food. He only chose light foods because he knew that the distraught young man would be unable to keep anything heavy down. Albus was concerned as he watched Severus just pick at his food. He was also worried because the younger wizard had not spoken a word since he woke up. Dumbledore patiently encouraged Severus to eat until at least half the plate was empty. Realizing that was better then he had expected he waved the mess away and then slowly guided the boy to the sofa.

Albus seated himself first and then settled the still quiet wizard onto his lap and continued to send comfort and support. He was prepared to spend the rest of the day like this if he had to. He knew that eventually Severus would come out of his daze and probably be mortified when he realized he lost control like this but he would deal with that when the time came.


Well how was it? Was it awful? Was is ok? Please review and let me know what you think. slides empty review tin out, with sign attached "Feed the author"