A/N: Part two in my SS/MM fic


Disclaimer: I wish it was mine!!

The Question of Loyalty

It will come soon. I have to go back. He will ask me to. Voldemort will torture me no less, I must convince him of my loyalty at least. I must say that I stayed on Alb- no Dumbledore's good side so as to be able to be a double agent when Voldemort came back. I could not look for him for Dumbledore would surely know.

"Severus," said Dumbledore, turning to him, "You know what I must ask you to do. If you are ready . . . if you are prepared . . ."

"I am," Severus said, his face paling slightly as his eyes glittered in a way they never had before.

"Then good luck," Albus said, and he watched, with a trace of apprehension on his face, as Severus swept wordlessly from the room.

Severus made his way down to the dungeons, he searched the back of his closet. Searched for the robe and mask he had hoped he would never need again but knew he would, his Death Eater clothing. He donned the robe but carried the mask, facing it into the robe.

He quickly made his way up to the Entrance Hall where he found Minerva, obviously she had just come from the Headmaster's office where she would have left Hagrid and possibly Madame Maxime. She seemed to be waiting for something, could she be waiting for him . . . no, it was impossible.

He could never endanger her more then she already was, even if she did return his feelings. "Minerva," he nodded to her.

"Severus," she said quietly. "Be careful, and do come back." She then turned and left, leaving Severus more confused then ever.

He made his way down to the gate and quickly apparated once he was outside of the wards.

Minerva quickly took her leave of Severus, she knew if she stayed any longer she would tell him of her love and that would only throw him off the task at hand. He had to survive the night, he just had to.

She loved him so much and hated for him to do this, it only hurt him more. He thought no one could want him, it would explain why he had stayed away from women the past decade.

Minerva made it to her rooms before she sat down and bent her head slightly, hands together. "Dear Lord, please protect Severus this night. I ask you to look after him as I cannot, he deserves so much more in life then what he has gotten, protect him, my love. Amen."

Minerva had not prayed since she was a little girl, not prayed like you meant it at least. Oh how she meant that prayer.

She had an hour long shower, trying to relax as the hot water cascaded down her back. Almost immediately after she was dressed Albus called her to his office to discuss the night. It would be a long night.

Severus had apparated to one of the old meeting places; no doubt they would have moved after Potter got away. Here they met in a clearing which was surrounded by dense forest, cast over the whole area were Dark Spells to protect them from intrusion.

He quickly walked twenty metres to the meeting place. There he found one of his most hated memories, a group of Death Eaters in a circle around the Dark Lord. He quickly made his way to his place in the circle, and then he crept forward slowly amid gasps from the circle. He kissed the hems of the Dark Lord's robes while murmuring, "Master . . . Master."

He backed away on his knees before standing in his place in the circle, spaces left on either side. Voldemort took slow deliberate steps over to the newcomer. He came to stand directly in front of the man who had his head bowed slightly. "Snape," the voice whispered, sending shivers down many backs. "Why are you here when you would surely know I will kill you?"

Severus waited a few moments before answering. "My Lord, you are my Master I had to come, it is my calling. I did not come earlier for I knew you would still wish for me to be a spy on the muggle-loved Albus Dumbledore. If I left he would believe I had never been on his side."

Voldemort laughed a cruel, high laugh. "I suppose that is how you will explain why you never came to look for me?"

"Yes my Lord," Severus answered his voice devoid of emotion.

"Well my," Voldemort laughed quietly, "servant. You must prove your loyalty to me. If you survive then you shall be considered a faithful servant once more. Crucio."

Severus fell to the ground. His body lay still, he did not move or make a sound, his silence showing his strength. He slowly relaxed as the curse ebbed away. Straightaway the pain was felt again, this time the words were not needed, the pain was to immediate. The process was repeated once more.

As the curse was lifted Severus heard soft laughter once more. "Well Severus it would seem your control is as strong as ever. We shall see if we can break it."

For the next three hours the cruciatus curse was cast on him again and again by various Death Eaters so the Dark Lord could keep his strength. Severus was given time to recover each time before it was cast again. After and hour and a half Severus had not been able to keep his cries in, he had cried out loud, letting go of the pain, letting the Lord enjoy it.

At the end of the three hours Voldemort spoke. "Three hours Severus and you are tiring already. Not up to your usual standard. We must work on that. Now a change is in order."

He conjured a table on which there were restraints. Crabbe and Goyle senior lifted the exhausted man and harshly placed him on the table before chaining him to it. Severus lay splayed across the table, his ankles and wrists restrained. Lastly with a quick mutter from the Dark Lord his clothes were gone.

Voldemort then conjured a set of knives; they were made from expensive metals and would have been praised for their beauty. The handles were made silver, there were beautiful and rare stones placed in the precious metal.

Voldemort strode forward and picked up a small dagger. He moved to Severus' chest. With the dagger in hand he slowly pulled it across his chest leaving a thin cut from which a small amount of blood came from. There was a gasp from Severus but other then that he did not move.

Voldemort gave the small knife to Lucius Malfoy and instructed him on what to do next. "You shall be in control Lucius, my friend. You shall cause our friend here pain. You shall instruct my servants on what to do. You will only stop when I say so. Understand?"

"Yes my Lord." Lucius bowed. The Dark Lord took his seat behind all of his servants, intent on enjoying the torture.

Lucius moved forward until he was standing directly over Severus. He moved the dagger from hand to hand, watching Severus' eyes follow it. In a sudden motion he brought it straight down in Severus' upper arm, slicing him. He cried out in pain as it cut into him, burning him. It was drawn out instantly before it was once more plunged in, this time in his other arm. It continued down his arms, slicing, withdrawing and moving down further.

The pain of the cuts along with that of the effects of the cruciatus curse caused Severus to writhe in pain. After what seemed like hours but was in reality not even one the intrusion of the knife stopped, leaving Severus to recover from the pain.

He breathed deeply; relaxing slightly in the peace he was given. Within minutes though he felt the skim of a bigger knife across his hips, stopping in the middle, frightening him beyond comprehension before moving across the rest of his body. The pain was sharp but more instantaneous then continuous pain. After hours of being carved on by all of the Death Eaters present Severus' chest bore the words 'forever loyal to the Dark Lord' and 'Dark shall triumph over Light'.

It was then that Voldemort interrupted the process. He moved in front of Lucius, watching the pain Severus tried to mask on his face. He muttered a few choice spells and the words shimmered in the darkness, they would never disappear.

The next order from Voldemort was for more Middle Eastern methods to be used. In particular the ones Saddam Hussein had employed, he was a great wizard, and he had suppressed the Muggles quite well. These methods were harsh and brutal, whipping of the feet, physical beating, cigarette burns and electric shocks. The group of Death Eaters was ordered to simulate these torture methods, on Severus.

They began with cigarette burns, as no doubt they would be the least painful method. After lighting up they leant over him, many of them at once, choosing were they would burn him. They began at the same time, placing the lit tips against his skin, pushing it in roughly each time, causing Severus to cry out in pain.

Within half an hour his body was covered in the small burns. They quickly moved onto the next method. They bound his feet together and Lucius conjured a cane, thick and solid. He handed it to MacNair and insisted he be the one to start. MacNair immediately lifted the cane and using his shoulder he hefted it towards Severus, hitting him on his heels.

The pain was unbearable for Severus, he felt as if his feet were on fire. They Death Eaters spent the next few hours alternating between beating him up and shooting electric shocks through him with the √Člectrardente curse. By the end of it all Severus was nothing more then a quivering bloody mass, yet he had not broken and told them anything but of his loyalty to the Dark Lord.

As it neared four in the morning Voldemort commanded them to stop the torture, allowing Severus a few moments peace before speaking to him. "You are loyal to me and only me, you shall remember that, always you are mine, I can break you."

"Yes Master," Severus whispered through the pain.

Voldemort then turned to the other Death Eaters and said coldly, "Leave and remember that you all answer to me, forever. For it is I who shall bring about the great change in our world."

Without making a sound the other Death Eaters left, leaving Voldemort alone with Severus. He muttered a small spell under his breath on a leaf, portus. Without a moments hesitation he threw the leaf down on top of Severus before saying, "Remember."

Severus felt a pull at his navel, a portkey, he would be home. He felt wet grass appear underneath him and saw the wide metal gates of Hogwarts before he blacked out.

A/N: I do not have anything against the Middle East but Saddam Hussein did have some pretty horrible torture methods.

Thanks to everyone who reviewed part 1 To Fall in Love, DeepShadows2, Maria, Ah, hurricanes. The evilness, Evil-Sme-Schizo-Pip and Angel.

Thanks in particular to Angel, you were honest (not that the others weren't) and I appreciate it. I had one of my friends read through it this time and she fixed some things. Is it any better?

Part three is being rewritten and shall be up within the next week because I have holidays