Alternate scenes for chapter 11. Rating: somewhere in-between PG and PG-13 – slight cussing

'Why am I even here? Why does he always do this to me?' Snape wondered for the hundredth as he finished off his fourth cup of punch (and the Great Hall doors hadn't even opened yet). He was, of course, referring to Dumbledore. 'I don't do anything except sit here! Why do I even have to come at all?' If it were up to Snape, he would be in his precious dungeons, working on...something. Well, whatever he wound up doing wouldn't be nearly as big a waste of time as this was! The Great Hall doors suddenly burst open, and in poured the throng of students. Snape swished the contents of his fifth cup of punch around as he looked over the students. He watched as they split up, looking for friends or dates or to be the first to claim a table. How...utterly boring.

Then suddenly, Snape saw her. He sat up straighter to get a better look. She was in the middle of the crowd, but you couldn't miss her. She outshone everyone around her. Snape felt his breath slowly leave his body as he watched Hermione glide to a table that was sitting near the wall farthest from the Great Hall doors. She set her purse down and lowered herself into a seat. He began studying the way the little curls she had left in her hair danced against her cheeks and rested on her shoulders. She was the most gorgeous creature he had ever laid eyes on, and he couldn't stop looking at her. In fact, he had been so focused on just looking at her, breathing in the sight of her, that he didn't even notice that she was looking down the Head Table until she reached him. He was so caught off guard that he couldn't do anything except meet her gaze. No glares, no sneers, just eyes locked upon beautiful eyes. Suddenly, the moment was over. Hermione smiled and waved to him, and Snape forced himself to glare at her so no one would get suspicious; especially her. Then Potter showed up with drinks.

'Wow. The boy actually has manners?' The joke rang hollow to his ears, and he polished off his punch. He nearly spit it out, though, when Potter held out his hand to Hermione. Severus had to grip the table hard to keep from leaping across is and ripping Hermione from that boy's grips. Instead, he excused himself and slipped out the door behind the Head Table. It lead him right to his dungeons, and he breathed a grateful sigh. He built a fire in the fireplace and settled down in front of it with something a little stronger than punch. No matter how much he wanted to, he couldn't stop his thoughts.

When exactly had he fallen for that Miss-Know-It-All Hermione Granger? Not even Snape could say. All he knew was that his feelings for her had definitely changed. He had never seen her display such courage, or wit, or so much of a backbone until this whole pranking thing got started. Truth was, he was having the time of his life! He loved watching Hermione try to outwit him. Damn, even he'd had to work at times to outsmart her. She was just so clever, so smart,

'So young and beautiful!' the tiny, annoying voice in his head spoke up. 'What would she ever see in a dried up old man like you?' Snape grimaced.

"I have no idea," he spoke out loud as he finished off the Scotch and tossed the glass into the fire. "But a man can dream, right?" Suddenly, Snape's conscious mind was pushed back. He was forced to watch as his body (no longer under his control) got up from the couch and went into his room.

"I need some air," Hermione said, wiping her eyes. "Want to join me?"

"No thanks, Hermione. I'll be fine," Harry said, wiping at his eyes.

"Are you sure?"

"I'm positive," he said. "Go on." So Hermione slipped out the Great Hall doors unnoticed. The courtyard looked amazing, and it was completely cutoff from everything else so it was actually warm. Hermione looked up at the sky. There was an amazing view of the stars. Hermione settled down onto a nearby bench and looked around. The stars were pretty much the only source of light, except for a green torch at one end of the courtyard and a red one at the other. Hermione let her thoughts wander. The first thing that popped into her mind was of Snape. She first saw him standing midstage, arms thrown above his head, his flat stomach completely exposed, and light glinting slightly off the diamond decals. Hermione giggled, then an unexpected thought hit her. Snape's stomach was so flat, and Hermione thought she even saw the very faint outline of a six pack. Hermione suddenly imagined a shirtless Snape, and she herself was running her hands from his shoulders, down his chest, across his well-muscled stomach, and then even further down to the top of his pants. She saw Snape simultaneously bring his hands up to cup her face gently and begin to lower his mouth toward hers. Suddenly, Hermione sat up ramrod straight on the bench.

'What am I thinking?' she wondered, bringing a hand to her forehead and pulling her fingers away. They were slightly damp from the sweat she had broken out into. Well, it's not like she had never noticed that Snape was...attractive, to say the least. And the most brilliant man (besides Dumbledore himself) she had ever met. In fact, she had caught herself several times just sitting in potions class, staring at Snape and wondering just what it was that made him tick. Luckily though, she had pulled herself from her musings before Snape could notice. That little...daydream, I guess you could call it, was the most vivid mental image she'd ever had of Snape that didn't involve his torture or premature demise (but that was in her second year and a very long time ago). This image had made her knees go completely weak and left her stomach all tied up in knots. Those knots jumped into her throat when the silky voice that was beginning to haunt her dreams spoke from behind her.

"Enjoying the view?" he asked. Hermione jumped up and off the bench. She whipped around to face Snape, and when she caught sight of him, her knees went all weak again.

'What the hell is wrong with me?' she wondered, but didn't dare voice it out loud. Instead, she looked the Potions Master up and down, making sure he was back to normal. Little did she realize the effect her scrutiny had on Severus. His blood began to boil.

"Back to normal, I see," she commented, looking up at what she could see of his face. She thought she saw his eyes narrow slightly.

"Yes, quite perfectly in every single way." It was Hermione's turn to narrow her eyes. That was not, could not be slight innuendo coming from Snape. Could it? The knots tightened in Hermione's stomach.

"Yes, well...I better be going back inside," she said, and began to turn around. Snape took a step toward her.

"Not so fast. You didn't honestly think I would let you get away that easy, did you?" Hermione began to turn around to face Snape once more, but she ran right into him instead. Instinctively, Snape reached out and grabbed her left arm to keep her from falling. Hermione threw her right arm out and grabbed onto him.

"Thank you, Prof–" Hermione caught sight of Snape's face, and the rest of her words died in her throat. His eyes were incredibly wide, and it looked like there was a fire burning in them. Hermione looked to were he was holding her arm. His grip was not at all tight but soft and gentle, and there was a slow fire starting from where he held her and continuing on up her arm. Then she looked to where her hand had fallen. It was about the middle of the lower half of his stomach (probably right above his belly button), and she could feel the hard, tight muscles underneath her fist. Then she looked up at his face once more, and her gaze fell onto his lips. She had never wanted to be kissed so much as she did at that moment. Snape, however, quickly came to his wits. He released Hermione and stepped back away from her.

"I think it's time you headed back to your dormitory," he said. Hermione couldn't say anything. Instead, she turned and walked back to the door. When she was barely five feet away from the castle, Snape called out to her.

"Oh and Miss Granger!" Hermione turned around. Snape said the incantation, and both watched as the yellow sparks reached her. Hermione felt a little shocked. Snape turned and began walking away.

"And if you see your friends before I do, there is no point in warning them." With that, he was gone, disappeared into the night.

The rest of the chapter continues just like the original story. And before anyone asks, the reason Snape still tells Hermione to get off him when she first hugs him is because he is afraid someone will see.

Please review and let me know if I did a good job!