Blacker than Black; Whiter than White

Part I: Ponderings

Disclaimer: Yes, this is just a formality thing, as practically everyone knows that the Harry Potter world belongs to the marvelous, thank-heavens- she-is-in-this-world J.K. Rowling. Oh, and Warner Bros., in a way.

Author's Note: This is supposedly part one of a planned three-parter of hey, that mysterious, elusive, sardonic Severus Snape. It can stand on its own though. Parts 2 and 3 have not been written. I'll see where my muse takes me. Hope you enjoy this:

I

He sits in his office when work is done,

He has nowhere else to go;

Solitude simply means being alone,

There is no place he will go.

Marked loneliness shall be preferred to than Hell,

For surely hell exists; he's been there before,

Delving within darkness fathomless to tell;

'Twas a time of dreaming, sweet madness and gore.

II

How he woke at last, he will never know.

Spiraling inward, soul since bared,

Blacker than the blackest, cold dread sank low,

Gross nausea more than he cared.

The one and only way out is always through,

Struggling confession to whom is left to trust.

The one all-knowing; the other a wretched fool,

Thoughtful understanding; raging, bitter, lost.

III

He accepts the punishment he expects.

'Tis what all traitors deserve.

But nay, a path surpassing his prospects

Laid forth for him to observe.

"Look well brave lad, you who learnt your error."

Whispered a voice so soothing he would have sobbed,

Were not for fierce pride and rising terror,

Checking emotion as realisation dawned.

IV

"There's the free road I give you here to take.

It's not for me to turn you in.

Do what you feel is right for conscience's sake.

Guilt is the worst blow from within."

Looking down the road untrodden,

Dared he face the demons first thought left behind,

This time shouldering a different burden,

By fighting back, a chance not sought out in mind?

V

He chose to join the battlefield again,

Henceforth from the other side.

Be it for redemption or vengeance plain,

He helped overcome the tide.

He shrugged off recognition that never came.

His mentor's smile and nod were all that mattered.

Even as dullness and pain still feel the same,

Penance is not enough for one thus battered.

VI

He took up work his mentor had proffered,

'Twas all there was left to do.

Sanctuary and prison this place offered,

The sole comfort he turned to.

Now he stands staring out the windowpane,

Unmoved by the lushness nature has to show.

Seeing the years upon the cold ground lain,

Longing to escape his wasted, empty shadow.

VII

"Come away into the open dear child.

Leave the past that holds you bound.

See what life can give in this world so wild.

Fear not the splendours around."

Doubt brings pause at the threshold in between.

Conflicting choices fighting for the prime.

Lurk back in corners he has always been,

Or seek forth absolution for all time?

He steps out.

(A/N: The protagonist is of course Snape and the mentor naturally Dumbledore.)