The Self-Writing Parchment

Hermione finds a mysterious piece of self-writing parchment in Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes that writes: Tell me your deepest desire. Thinking it's a trick, she says, "Take me to my soul mate?" and she suddenly finds herself at Severus Snape's feet.

The warnings I have listed for this chapter are implied. I chose the rating of MA (NC-17) due to the story's overall content.

~o1o~

It was Harry's idea in the first place to visit Fred and George, although Ron was eager to go the moment Harry suggested it. "They have defensive stuff, Hermione," both pleaded with her.

"Decoy Detonators, Shield Hats and Cloaks, Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder and… other stuff," Harry rattled off. "These things could be useful, especially if we run into anyone while tracking down the Horcruxes."

He was right, of course. That, and Fred had said that he had acquired the three Hands of Glory that Harry wanted in case they needed to go into caves or tunnels and didn't want to be seen. It was risky going to Diagon Alley so they waited until it was late and donned long, nondescript black robes and cloaks for the trip and Apparated to the recessed alcove that led to the twins' upstairs flat.

In the shop the boys – all four of them – roamed the shelves, collecting Shield Hats, Gloves and Cloaks, for her, Ron and Harry to wear at Harry's insistence; they also got Decoy Detonators, Peruvian Instant Darkness Powder, Liquid Condensed Fog, and their newest invention, Blinding Flash, in emergency, pocket-sized containers. Hermione added several Wildfire Whiz-Bangs sparkler balls, Repeating Exploding Snap-Caps and Loud-As-Thunder Pellets. The twins even had pocket-sized Swamp Ooze, which made a puddle of slimy swamp water three meters wide when dropped that could potentially be useful under the right circumstances.

But Hermione sternly put her foot down on buying any of the joke items at this time. "Harry, really! We don't need a trick wand – you'll need your real one, and what if you pull it out by accident, and…" she stated as the wand Harry held suddenly emitted thousands of star-shaped confetti bits. "Ron, I'm not going to take any Dungbombs!" she exclaimed when he added a box of them to the growing pile on the counter as she chose the least comical Headless Hat on the shelf, a crochet cloche hat with a ridiculously large sunflower on the turquoise band.

"Really, Hermione," Fred admonished her. "Where is your sense of fun, your imagination?"

"Yes," George said. Hermione was examining her Hand of Glory, and her brow crinkled as he added a Boomerang Wheezebee on the counter. "You never know just what you'll really need. Like maybe a good chocolate or nougat?"

"Chocolate is a must if you run into a Dementor!" Fred called over from across the shop, retrieving a box from a top shelf.

Hermione slipped the Hand of Glory into her pocket. "How will developing a raging fever or a nosebleed help fight Vol-demort," she hesitated on saying his name, making it come out as a stammer, "help us?" She grimaced, realizing that she fell back into her old habit as Harry smiled at her, Ron cringed, and Fred and George looked at her, stunned.

"Very good, Hermione," Harry teased her. "You can almost say his name now!" Hermione looked at him sideways with a crooked smile.

"It only took her six years!" Ron ridiculed her.

"Yeah, Ron, and how long will it take you?" Fred said, laughing at him. Ron blushed.

"I do think these Headless Hats are a good idea, though, Ron," Hermione said, changing the subject back to the reason they were there in the first place. "You and Harry should pick one out. Personally, I think that this porkpie would fit you nicely."

"Hermione, some of these may come in handy!" Ron said, brandishing a trick knife.

"And pray tell, Ron, for what purpose would you need with a knife that won't cut anything?" she asked. "I thought we were stocking up on supplies we might need to help us out of sticky situations?"

"If you buy the knife, I'll throw in the wand, Harry," George suggested, adding three sets of Extendable Ears to the pile on the counter. "That way we can always say 'Harry Potter used it' in our advertising."

Harry set down a blue Headless Hat in a simple boater style. "I'll take it, then!"

Hermione shook her head, searching the shelves and bins for useful items. She picked up a piece of parchment off the floor. It was an expensive sheet of animal vellum, far more durable than paper, with a faint grain, thin, smooth and luxurious to the touch. She looked around, wondering which bin it had fallen out of.

She set the vellum sheet on the counter and began to separate out the pile of merchandise, dividing it in three, so that each of them would have the defensive trick items that they'd come in for, setting the items that she didn't want into Harry's pile. "I'll take these, then," she said to Fred.

Harry looked the pile over as Fred took inventory of her purchases. "No problem, but I'm paying. Fred, add it all together, then give me a note to sign so that you can draw from my Gringotts account, all right?"

"No problem," Fred said, writing up Hermione's receipt. "But you don't pay, Harry, remember? But I'll give you a receipt anyway. I'll just charge up Ron's and Hermione's merchandise."

"Are you sure, guys?" Harry asked uncertainly.

"You don't pay – got it? Besides, we just keep a list of what you take so that we can have proof of what you got," George said. He was separating the items into three bags as Fred passed him the items he wrote down.

"It will be great for advertising," Fred said as he wrote out the receipt. "Buy the items that the Boy-Who-Lived-to-Defeat-You-Know-Who used to defeat You-Know-Who in the final stand. It'll be great!"

"All right, if you're sure," Harry stated.

"Harry, I'm going to go to Flourish and Blotts," she said, pocketing the items George handed to her. "I will meet you in there, okay?"

"Sure," Harry replied as Ron blurted out, "Like you'd miss an opportunity to get a new book." Hermione chose not to retort but gave Ron an angry glare.

"Ron," Harry said, trying to hold back a big grin. "You should be thankful she's willing to do all the reading. If it weren't for her, we wouldn't have been learning all those new spells. Besides, you know how many times Hermione has been able to find the information we need, either from the library or in all her books."

"Thank you, Harry," she said as she casually walked from the shop.

Mr. Flourish was a little surprised to see Hermione at his door when he was about to turn over the 'Open' sign to read 'Closed for the Night' but he let her in anyway. "Harry and Ron will be by in a minute – after Harry settles with Fred and George Weasley – but I need a few books. I hoped I wasn't too late?"

He pushed the door wider. "Not at all, my dear, always open to one of our better clients. Would you like to see our new releases?"

"Sure, I'd love to," she replied enthusiastically.

Several minutes later Hermione was deep in the bookshelves of the Potions section, scanning the list of antidotes and fascinating potions listed in Piquettey Faulkner's newest book, trying to determine if the book was worth purchasing. She had already amassed a pile next to her on the shopping cart.

The tiny bell over the door rang out just before Harry called, "Hermione, are you still in here?"

"Of course she's still in here; the question is where," Ron said. "Oi, Hermione, where are you?"

She poked her head out of the Potions section. "I'm here!"

"Are you ready?" Harry asked.

"Sure, I, um – just a moment." She climbed down the stepladder and examined the books she had piled up, considering which she could afford to buy.

Ron moaned at her indecision.

"Hermione?" Harry asked.

"Give me a minute, Harry," she said, picking up the largest tome and setting back a thick book on antidotes. "I am going to get these… and this one – definitely this one…" She shifted the books, gazing at a book on Transaudient Charms, Reaching Across Distances the Magical Way, and Transilient Transfiguration, and laid them down again.

"Hermione," Harry said again, wanting to leave sooner rather than later.

"Just a minute, Harry, I'm deciding." She placed three Potions tomes aside and picked up a Transfiguration book before picking up the first four.

Harry watched, amused at his friend's dilemma. Since they had decided that they would put off their last year until Harry had either finished off Voldemort or died trying, Hermione had been in a collecting frenzy over spell books, adding plenty of new volumes to his library at number twelve, Grimmauld Place. "If you can justify needing them to me, I will buy the lot," Harry suggested.

"Really, Harry, there are…" She quickly counted. "I have eleven, well, thirteen actually, and these, but I…"

Harry turned to Mr. Flourish. "She can have the lot." Hermione looked at Harry with both stunned disbelief and gratitude as Mr. Flourish nodded at Harry with a huge grin. "Hermione, I'll let you have what ever will fit in your book bag, just as long as I don't have to read all of them."

"That would be half the shop," Ron said, laughing as Harry signed the transaction receipt. "Are we ready yet?"

Back at Harry's house, they all lit their small lamps, and Hermione immediately strode into the library. "I suppose that means that either you or I cook," Ron stated, watching her disappear into the room.

"Then I'll cook," Harry said, laughing. "Besides, I'm better at it than you are, and we both knew that she'd run for the library to read as soon as we got here anyway."

"I heard that!" Hermione called from the large desk she had transfigured that morning, adding her new books to the stacks in categories. She pulled her cloak off, laying it casually on her chair, and began flipping through the book on Transaudient Charms.

Idly, she reached into her pocket to pull out a quill and parchment and withdrew the parchment she'd found in Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes. She slipped the new book into her pocket and examined the parchment. It was old, really old, but in perfect condition. It was only when she laid it upon the desk that the words, Make a wish, ask a question – I'll show your fate, I'll tell you no lies, appeared. Hermione was stunned.

Turning the parchment over, she looked for any trademark or the common WWW that Fred and George usually used to identify their products and found one small imprint of the trademark in the bottom left corner that looked more like a stain than their usual bright fuchsia imprint. Curious, she wrote, What should I ask for?

Pearly black ink appeared and scrolled into, Tell me your deepest desire. Three times I will comply – if brave you be, to face what you'll see.

Laughing, Hermione mumbled, "All right, then." Thinking it was simply a trick sheet of parchment, she wrote, Who is my heart's desire? I wish to see my soul mate.

Suddenly, the chair melted below her, and she seemed to spin as she grabbed for the armrests, the room spinning in the opposite direction she was, and everything around her was a blur of dark colors as she seemed to be sucked into the parchment. Weightless, dizzy and confused, Hermione tried screaming for Harry or Ron, but her voice could not be heard even in her own ears.

Hermione found herself landing on her bum, sitting on the ground in a grove of thick trees, at the feet of Severus Snape. She started to rise, but he shoved her to the ground and quickly covered her with his cloak. "You stupid girl – what are you doing here?" he hissed. "Of all places… and at this time? How did – never mind."

"Professor?" she uttered from under the cloak, breathless, just realizing that she had been holding her breath the whole time.

"SILENCE, you stupid girl!" he hissed fiercely. "Do not utter one word, or I shall kill you myself. Simply nod or shake your head if you understand me." Hermione nodded and held her tongue.

"Okay," he said and peeled back his cloak to look at her. "At least you had the presence of mind to wear a black robe and contain that mane of hair," he observed, glaring at her robe and the loose braid holding her mass of curls away from her face.

"But, Professor, where am I?" she asked, gingerly getting to her feet.

"I told you to hold your tongue," he hissed angrily; his dark eyes flashed dangerously and he drew his wand. "Imperio," he snarled. He transfigured a hood and pulled it over her head, and then quickly covered her face with a recruit's mask, giving it the 'mark' of one that had been approved, but untried. "You will stay by my side. You will not speak or utter any sound. You will ask no questions. You will think only obedience, loyalty, and devotion. Come."

Hermione had not even opened her mouth to resist or to call out; her mind was blank with a light, airy sensation of floating in a dream. Her wand pointed uselessly at the ground. She felt a complete, wonderful release from any sense of responsibility or worry over her actions or his, grateful that Professor Snape had everything under control. I will do whatever he says I should… be utterly obedient to him… trust him explicitly… loyal to him, devoted to him, and love him

"Oh, this is bloody ridiculous," he snarled, and a light-fingered caress lifted from her mind. "Follow me and repeat insipidly that mantra whenever I say, 'my Lord'. Do you understand me?" Hermione could only nod her head, the light airy dream separating her from any sense of fear or reality.

Professor Snape led her into a clearing where Peter Pettigrew knelt, lighting a fire. She knew that she should be afraid, but she simply had nothing to worry about. Snape was in front of her.

In ones and pairs, occasionally in small clusters, the dark ring was formed as the Death Eaters arrived. There were not as many as Hermione would have expected there to be. Nearly thirty came to stand in a loosely grouped circle that stood in her line of sight. If these are his only followers, then he hasn't been as successful as he'd been last time he rose to power. Maybe people are more aware of his true intentions, his true nature, and fear him.

One figure swept the others aside and entered the circle; it was a tall, skeletally thin man in long, black robes with his hood folded back across his shoulders, exposing a bald, pale head. When he turned to face in her direction, Hermione could see the shrunken, drawn face – the contours of his skull apparent under the translucent white skin, the livid scarlet eyes that almost glowed with black slits for pupils, and a flat nose with narrow slit-like nostrils. His mouth was his only normal feature: thin lips that curled in a sneer at the corner the way that Snape's had in class. Her eyes surveyed him, unafraid and with a calm sense of curiosity, her face serene under the mask.

"Kneel," Snape demanded, and immediately Hermione lowered down to show reverence to this man she loathed; although her eyes followed his every move, her curiosity at seeing him outweighed her fear, only because of the hold of the curse.

Her mind repeated the mantra. I will do whatever he says I should… be utterly obedient to him… trust him explicitly… loyal to him, devoted to him… love him…

Voldemort moved with unnatural grace around the circle, greeting some of those gathered around him in the grove, punishing others for various reasons. His voice was strangely high-pitched, yet every bit as cold as Hermione expected it to be, making the tiny hairs on the back of her neck bristle. With several of his Death Eaters, he simply asked them who they'd recruited to join him, or if they had been successful at their appointed task with a note of menace in the cold tone of his voice. Hermione found that she could calmly and impassionately observe him, thanks to being held by Snape's Imperius Curse.

"Severus, nice of you to join us – again," Voldemort hissed.

Snape bowed low, keeping his eyes reverently lowered. "My Lord, I will always return to you. I am and will be eternally yours."

Her mind immediately repeated the mantra. I will do whatever he says I should… be utterly obedient to him… trust him explicitly… loyal to him, devoted to him, and love him…

"Yes, although, not always obedient. Rise, Severus," Voldemort commanded coldly. He eyed Hermione curiously, walking around her, stopping just behind her back. "And what do we have here? Have you brought in a recruit? That is not the task I put to you," he continued, his voice a silky caress on each word. The silkiness of the high-pitched tone sent shivers down Hermione's spine, even under the calming effects of the Imperious Curse.

"She came to me of her own accord, just as I was summoned, my Lord," Snape replied lazily, the smooth drawl of his voice reflecting his annoyance. "I had little choice but to bring her."

Once again, Hermione repeated the mantra. I will do whatever he says I should… be utterly obedient to him… trust him explicitly… loyal to him, devoted to him, and love him…

"I see. Pray tell me why would I be interested in a Mudblood, Severus?" he asked quietly, his words meant for Snape only.

"This one is unique," Snape answered. Hermione could feel the tension he emitted, knowing that he was highly agitated. "She is the one you heard about from Malfoy, the Muggle-born who excelled in her every class at Hogwarts – and is one of Harry Potter's friends, Hermione Granger."

Hermione's mind whirled. Why is he telling him this? I will do whatever he says… warred in her mind with, I am going to be killed! I will trust him explicitly – but I'm going to be killed!

Voldemort stepped in front of Hermione and looked down at her still kneeling form. "Rise, girl," he said, but Hermione remained immobile. "Severus?"

"I put her under the Imperius, my Lord," Snape answered, the irritation barely concealed in his reply. "I was pressed for time, and it seemed the only logical way to control her and her incessant questions." He glared down at Hermione. "You will respond as directed by the Dark Lord." Silently, he re-strengthened the hold of his Imperius Curse on her in case her overactive mind broke his hold on her and forced his hand. Idiot girl, keep your emotions under control. Trust me, obey me… he thrust into her mind.

Hermione nodded and stood up, her mind repeated the mantra. I will do whatever he says I should… be utterly obedient to him… trust him explicitly… loyal to him, devoted to him… and love him…

"Very nice… well done, Severus," Voldemort said quietly and smiled mechanically. He stretched out a long-fingered hand and lifted her face to stare into her eyes. His touch was as unexpected as his manner. His fingertips were cold, dry and silky, but held her chin firmly. "You have done well… very well…"

Hermione thought she saw a gleam in his red eyes; a greedy expression crossed his features. "So this is the infamous Hermione Granger, Hogwarts' star pupil and Harry Potter's girlfriend… interesting," murmured Voldemort softly, examining Hermione's warm brown eyes.

"She is not his girlfriend, per se," Snape replied. "She is one of his two closest friends. They have been friends since his first year of school."

Hermione heard the voice of Lucius Malfoy speak up from somewhere in the circle to her right. "My lord, the trouble that this girl has caused, surely that must be taken into account."

"One of his closest friends… she would mean more to him then than just a girlfriend, isn't that right, Severus?" a Death Eater said, also from Hermione's right, but much closer. "Then if we kill her, it will devastate him."

Hermione recognized his voice. Lestrange… from the fight in the Ministry of Magic

She was still looking into Voldemort's eyes as a shadow of annoyance crossed his face and he looked over at Lestrange. "That is for me to decide – isn't it, Rodolphus?"

"I just thought," Lestrange started to say before he fell to his knees as Voldemort hissed the Cruciatus Curse.

Voldemort's eyes flashed scarlet, nearly glowing in anger, and Hermione clearly saw the knuckles whiten on the hand that held his wand. "I will decide what to do with her." He released Lestrange and turned back to Hermione, his gaze traveling leisurely over her. He reached out his hand and gripped her face, his long fingers firm but gentle as he looked at her intently. The silence stretched as they stood there.

Voldemort, she had heard, was evil; however his hand, as it caressed her cheek, was oddly affectionate. "So docile, so willing, so compliant… What is she usually like, Severus? Walk with me."

"Stay where you are. Do not move – do not speak," Snape told her as he stepped away, following the Dark Lord. Several Death Eaters joined them, a few sneaking glances in her direction.

Hermione stood frozen, her mind reeling. I am going to be killed! I will trust him explicitly – but I'm going to be killed! I will do whatever he says I should… Harry, forgive me… Be utterly obedient to him… devoted – till death… I trust him explicitly… He's Professor Snape! Dumbledore trusted him… loyal to him. Harry, oh, I need you… devoted to him… and love him… I don't love Professor Snape!

Hermione tried to hear what was being decided, knowing that Snape would acquiesce to whatever Voldemort told him to do. Several of the Death Eaters in the small group laughed and two swore. She felt unnaturally calm, the scene around her played before her like a television show, happening to someone else, the heroine – and she was simply caught up in the story.

When the group returned, Hermione finally felt the first rise of fear. Voldemort paused to look at her and then looked over at Snape, who was standing with his arms crossed, his posture stiffer than usual. Her mind screamed for her to react, but her body stayed frozen in place, betraying her. Voldemort seemed to consider her, regarding her for a moment, then seemed to come to a conclusion. "Far be it for me to deny you, Lestrange, Malfoy… You may do with her as you want, but just be sure to keep her alive. Severus, she will be your hostage once they're through. Unless, my friend, you want to change your mind and join them."

Snape remained immobile. "I will have my time with her," he said, his voice carrying a hard edge to it. Hermione wanted to cry out to him, but a soft, lingering caress filtered through her thoughts, and her mind focused on a lone transient thought. You will not remember any of this. I promise you.

Pain infused her consciousness before anything else registered in her mind. She remembered sitting in the library… Books, new books Harry bought me to read. The unusual parchment and the sudden transportation to… I was transported to Professor Snape! But why? Was that parchment a Portkey? How could it be? There were voices, mutterings, just beyond her hearing range in the dark room. Harry… Ron! Help me… There was no answer, and she didn't hear her voice in the room. Pain, so much pain… Voldemort – he's... he was… A series of contractions tore through her awareness, the pain intensifying in every fiber of her being.

She remembered him, every detail of the terrible wizard: his eyes, his face and his gentle caress of her cheek. For some reason, he elicited far more fear now than she remembered feeling standing before him. I met Voldemort? I stood before him… I was with Professor Snape and he took me to Voldemort! She remembered falling at Snape's feet, staring up at her one-time professor, seeing the black robe, the hood and the mask in his hand… His Death Eater mask. He put one on me, too, a mask like his – and a hood. He took me before Voldemort!

She tried to sit up and couldn't; the effort to tighten her muscles to make them move was excruciating. Tears rolled from her eyes, trailing not down her face but into her hair. The realization hit her. She lay on a bed, covered by a sheet… that much registered in her pain-addled mind. I'm in a bedroom. Whose? Where? The cool feel of a silk sheet, which meant; I'm naked under this sheet. Her skin felt dry and abraded against the smooth silky texture. She couldn't feel her bra; the poke of the under-wires was not present. Her awareness began to reach out beyond the pain, trying to identify where she was, and her mind began to separate out the details.

She wasn't alone. She could feel a presence in the room or her level of fear had created him. The aches and pains she felt were both a general throbbing pain throughout her body and groin and sharp stabbing pains in very specific areas. One fact was apparent; she was bereft of any denial that she had been tortured and beaten… Her body ached everywhere she'd been attacked, both by flesh and magic; the realization of certain injuries and the evidence of rape hit her, and the overall effect was nauseating.

She heard shuffling, and tried to concentrate on the sounds of male voices just beyond her range of hearing. "No, I don't," came an angry retort, followed by a pause.

"No. I don't…" a second male voice snarled, then faded below her hearing.

She tried to raise her head again, and her abdomen spasmed again, making her cry out softly. Tears rolled freely down her face into her hair, and she groaned.

The sounds of heavy boots as he walked on a wood floor, announced his entrance into the room. "So, you're awake now, are you, Miss Granger?" the second male voice asked.

There was no mistaking that voice. She couldn't move her head to look, but the rich, silky voice dripping with sarcasm would have been easily recognized anywhere. Slowly, she opened her eyes, and the dark-clothed shape and black hair that could only be him loomed over her.

"Well?" he said, his arms crossed, expecting an answer. "So, you have nothing to say – how enlightening."

She tried to shake her head in acknowledgment, but that caused her muscles to spasm, and she gasped out in agony. She couldn't move much, and pain shot through her body when she tried. Her arms and legs were shaking, and her stomach was cramping. She willed herself to relax, trying to ease the pain and spasms. After considerable time, she managed to reopen her eyes, only to see Snape still standing over her, watching her, staring at her intently.

"Wormtail," he called out after several long heartbeats.

A heavy shuffle announced the presence of Ron's onetime rat. "Yes, Severus?" he said from outside the doorway.

"You no longer need to be concerned; she's awake. Now go," he snarled, not even turning to look in Wormtail's direction.

She could hear Wormtail shuffle outside the door, muttering to himself. "But I want to see her," he said, practically a whine.

Snape smiled and simply turned his head slightly. "Not now," he snapped angrily over his shoulder. He picked up a vial from the bedside table and approached Hermione.

She was momentarily frightened as she looked at the hard expression on his face and tried to struggle, unsuccessfully, as Snape raised her head, and his strong fingers tightened in her hair to hold her head still. "Drink this," he said softly.

"No," she sputtered, trying to avoid swallowing anything as he poured a sweet tasting potion into her mouth.

"I'm not going to poison you, you idiot girl. Drink." The potion slid into her mouth again.

"What are you going to do to me?" she gasped between swallows.

"Heal you," he sneered. The stare of his cold, black eyes penetrated her pain-confused mind.

She rolled her eyes to look at him. "Why?" she choked as he held another vial to her lips. "Where am I? What is this place?" she asked between swallows. "Please, Professor."

"Why – you are injured, and it has fallen to me to heal you. Now drink!" he said firmly. "Relax, you will only tear open again if you try to sit up."

A flare of hope swelled inside her, "You could take me to Grimmuald Place," she said, nearly a whisper. "Or the Burrow…"

"No. I cannot," he snapped angrily, then lowered his voice. "Now, will you be quiet? We have rats in the house."

She heard Wormtail snigger in the background and closed her eyes. "But when will you let me go?" she whispered.

"I cannot, Miss Granger." He switched vials again. She tried to turn her head, but he held it firmly, preventing her, and a tear ran down her cheek.

"But you have to. You are one of us. You could take me to the Order?" she asked quietly, pleading with him to help her.

"You have no idea the situation you are in," he snarled, then his hard expression showed the slightest flicker concern before he schooled his face to the usual expressionless mask, "and in no condition at the present time to hear it."

"If you won't let me go, then you're on his side." She sputtered as the potion slid down her throat. "You're only going to kill me anyway – aren't you?" The potion tasted different; hypha fascia, black cohosh and colander infused with something she couldn't identify.

Wormtail coughed, reminding her that he still waited beyond the door.

Snape closed his eyes a moment, irritated and she could see the tic in his jaw as he clenched his teeth. "Oh, no, Miss Granger," he said slowly, his voice deeply infused with irritation. "The Dark Lord has reserved that honor for himself. But for now, he has decided that you should live."

She gagged. "What?" She tried to lift her head, but he held her firmly. "Why?" she tried to ask, but the effects of the potions began to hit her. Already her eyes felt heavy, she could feel herself falling asleep, even as she tried to resist, fighting to keep consciousness.

"We will discuss your situation after you are better and can think clearly. Now sleep."

~~o0o~~

Author's notes:

There is similarity between my story and 'Traitor,' by Averygoodun. I love this story of hers and I admit I've re-read it several times. I want to thank Averygoodun for allowing me to use part of the plot, some situations, and some characterizations from her story, "Traitor." It happens to be one of the first SS/HG stories that I've read, and it has influenced me greatly.

I haven't the words to express my gratitude to Southern_Witch_69 for her help and the effort and support she gave me on this story. Without her, I probably would have chucked it in the rubbish bin.

For those who don't like hostage-under-duress-falls-for-their-abductor, there is much more going on here, and I hope you have patience with me. Snape will have to come to terms with far more personal issues than Hermione will. He is now fully ensconced in the Dark Lord's circle and doesn't have Dumbledore to fall back on anymore.

Transaudient – Pertaining to the passage of sound.

Transilient – leaping or passing from one thing or state to another.

This was my response to a Potter_Place Summer 2007 Prompt and spurred a lot of ideas for me. The prompt was: Hermione finds a mysterious piece of self-writing parchment in Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes that writes: Tell me your deepest desire. Thinking it's a trick, she says, "Take me to my soul mate?" and she suddenly finds herself at Severus' feet. I changed Hermione's response to the parchment to be in writing, I wish to see my soul mate, instead.