A/N: Last chapter for Year 3! I'm way behind on this story cause I've been distracted with reading, and painting… and school, but… I'm graduating! Yay (Sort of)! So I will try to be as productive with writing as I can with the classes I'm going to be doing to get a Pharmacy Tech license before actual college starts.
Hope y'all like this chapter, it's a bit shorter than the previous ones, but it's something :)
"The prisoner, who now stand before you, was caught red handed showing feelings. Showing feelings of an almost human nature. This will not do. "
Hermione and Severus were the first ones out from under the Whomping Willow, followed by Harry, Sirius, and a now conscious and once again sobbing Pettigrew who was tied to Remus and Ron.
"I shouldn't have asked you to come out here," she told him as they exited the tunnel as the others followed down the stairs. "I know you hate this place."
"You shouldn't have been in there in the first place," he told her, still looking tense as he shot a loathing glance to Sirius and Harry who stood off to the side. "If Lupin had shifted already they would have been cleaning you off the floor by now, him as well since I would have killed him and be well on my way to Azkaban."
She gave him a look, now seeing his face twist and jam a hand into his robes, "Don't be so crass, Severus." She turned back to him as she hears him curse and pull out a vial of brown liquid, and it dawned on her as the clouds shifted to reveal the full moon she had forgotten about in the chaos. "He didn't take it today did he?" She asked, but she knew the answer was no as Remus gave a sudden shout and doubled over.
After whispering in his furry ear, Hermione let Crookshanks leap out of her arms and into the dark forest.
"Remus!" Sirius yelled as Hermione yelled at Harry to move away from the shifting werewolf. "Harry run!"
Lupin's limbs had begun to shake, and a terrible snarling noise had risen in the back of his throat that sounded more like an animal growling than any noise a human would make. His head lengthened, his arms and legs popping into a curve much like a wolve's as they shot up in size, and his shoulders hunched in pain as his raggedy clothes ripped from his body as hair sprouted from any visible clear skin into a thick pelt.
Hermione moved to grab Harry from the wolf's reach with Severus behind her, but she instead had put herself in the circle of motion and was raked across the chest. Severus had pulled her back in time though, and only her shirt was ripped, revealing the time turner hidden underneath her robes.
As the werewolf reared back, snapping its long jaws at them, Sirius disappeared, in his place was a large dog almost half the size of the werewolf. The werewolf wrenched free of it's binding to Peter and Ron, making them fall to a heap on the ground which gave Pettigrew the perfect opportunity to seize Lupin's fallen wand and transform himself back to his rat form, following the path Crookshanks had made into the Forbidden Forest. Sirius and Lupin rolled down the hill out of sight, snarling and yelping following them on their way down.
Harry breaks out of Hermione's grasp and goes after them, and she doesn't notice as Severus grabs her shoulders in a steely grip as they fall to their knees in front of each other, "You stupid, stupid girl!" Terror was written all over his face, but not only for her, but seeing the werewolf that had tormented him for years she saw right before her eyes blurred and the tight feeling in her chest expanded and bursts.
She finally sobs, giving into all the pressure of the night's events and grabs onto his forearms and bows her head, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. This wasn't supposed happen, it wasn't..." she continues to babble incoherently as she hears Ron tell them in the background that he was going to go get help, and then the pounding of his feet as he runs off.
"Hermione," Severus tries to calm her unsuccessfully, pulling her to her feet and burying her face in his coat. "Hermione, you need to calm down. The dementors will know Black is here by now, and Potter went after him and Lupin."
She pulls back sniffling, and nods, pulling him to stand behind the willow tree and lifting the chain of her golden necklace over his neck.
She turns the dial, and then they were flying backwards in time.
"I'm sorry, Professor Dumbledore," Hermione told the man standing in front of her and Severus outside the Hospital Wing's doors, "You trusted me with the Time Turner and I let you down."
He smiled at her understandingly and nods, eyes flicking to a silent Severus and waves them by from where he had stopped them as they exited from talking to Harry and Ron.
They walk away and Hermione slides her hand into the lining of her robes and touches the golden hourglass.
She looks up to his stony face, and sighs, "You know we had to let him go, Severus,"
He looks down to her, "I know."
He says no more as Hermione resigns herself to his silence until she could show him the consolation prize she knew would not exactly cheer him up so much as temper his anger into something useful.
Though not unfounded, Hermione could understand his reaction to their situation, he was reacting exactly how she suspected to them saving Sirius from the dementors and sending him off on Buckbeak. Severus had not wanted to do it, that was clear, but the Headmaster had expectations of people, and if they were not met, it would cause more problems than it was worth. She had not been elated after the fact either, far from it knowing how it was affecting the man next to her, but she knew helping Black escape would help Harry in the long run after he was mistreated so much by his own blood.
Hermione takes Severus' hand, and leads him into the Forbidden Forest.
Walking through the dark world they had entered, Hermione felt at peace where normally others would feel creeped out by the quietness of it all and the shining eyes blinking out at them from the tall trees and berry bushes.
"What are we doing here, girl?" he speaks up finally, without her having to prompt him into talking and squeezing her hand to show her he was not being silent with her, but was only displeased with how their day had ended so far.
She motions to the opposite side of the small clearing they had entered, and there was Crookshanks, batting at a scurrying dirty little rodent on the prickly forest floor.
"I have a present for you. Crookshanks was sweet enough to catch him for you." She can feel his gaze flicking to the two animals, and to the side of her face, "Do with him what you will, but we cannot allow him to take our place with the Dark Lord. Gods know what he has heard scurrying around the dungeons."
She raises her gaze up his tall figure to his burning eyes, looking at her as he never has before, and she shivers at the intensity of it.
"No," he drawls, his eyes lighting up with something unreadable as he pulls out his wand, "We wouldn't want that."
Crookshanks retracts his claws and holds his tail up jauntily high as he struts towards his mistress and his master, meowing up at them cutely as Hermione smiles and picks him up, butting his head with her's.
Mistress and Master safe from the smelly rat man now…
"Snape has changed," Sirius told Remus as they sat on the dusty couch in Number 2 Grimmauld place after moving in Remus' few things into his new room.
Remus look to him, searching his face and waiting for him to say something else. "He has."
"Harry's friend, the girl-"
"Hermione," Remus supplied for him.
"Hermione, she is a very clever witch." He paused. "They seem close. From what I've seen."
The werewolf nodded, knowing he was broaching the subject of what he had witnessed many times before when no one else was watching.
Hermione looking at Severus much more than any other student did while they sat in the Great Hall…
They pass each other in the Hall, and Severus passes her with one of his signature snarky remarks but leaves with a slightly different smirk than his usual snarl…
That one time he had happened upon them as the girl exited his chambers in the dungeons…
He allows her to touch him…
To boss him around…
"They were arguing about something when they broke me out of the tower at Hogwarts," Sirius was saying, his words slurring slightly, not used to the alcohol content of the firewhiskey. His eyes were far away from their conversation as he talked without really hearing what he was saying, "We've all changed, a lot."
Sirius stood stroking Buckbeak after bowing to him, his ears picking up only snippets of the man he had hated so much in school, and his godson's tiny little friend. He had to admit he wasn't paying attention much until he heard Harry's name come up…
"... needs someone who will take care of him. Someone that will love him." Sirius watched them as they glanced back at him occasionally, and it seemed as if what Hermione had been saying got through to the greasy man as he straightened his shoulders.
Severus' head bowed from where he could see them as Hermione looked up to him with an open and pleading face, the face which lit up with a smile when Snape mumbled something at her which he couldn't hear.
The breeze rustled the girl's wild hair which sent her scent toward Sirius, and he found it odd that even if Severus was standing in front of her from his vantage point as they walked towards him, it occurred to him that they smelled exactly the same.
"I haven't seen someone tell Snape what to do since him and Lily were friends, and him actually listen." Sirius said, breaking out of his hazy thoughts and put his crystal tumbler down onto the coffee table. "Or, look at him the way she does."
Remus' face was staring down at his drink as his friend bored a hole into the side of his face, "I've noticed it to."
But she never looked at him the way this small girl does...
"What are we going to do about it?"
"There is nothing to do, Sirius." Remus finally looked at him, "We have tormented that man long enough, it is time to stop." He knew his words were fruitless, once Sirius Black got something in his head, especially concerning Severus, it was hard to get him off of it. "The man saved your life for Merlin's sake, if it weren't for him, you would be rotting away in Azkaban. A shell of what you are now."
Sirius got his signature stubborn look on his face, not listening to the man sitting next to him. He drinks his firewhiskey, and starts making a plan to see how close his childhood rival was to Harry's best friend.
A/N: I love you all and I will try and post as soon as possible with Year 4! Tell me what y'all think about this chapter!