Notes: This is yet another WIP that I have been inspired to write, for everyone who has been following Razorblade Romance- I apologise that it hasn't been updated for so long but it has been giving me real issues so bear with me: it could be awhile!

J.K. Rowling and her publishers own the Harry Potter world, I only own a lot of shoes.

As always CS Whitewolf- your questionable schizophrenia and the wonder of telepathy will never waver. Love ya.

OotP spoilers, self-harm (cutting), adult language, violence, slash and sexual situations (eventually).

"Problems have solutions
a lifetime of fucking things up
Fixed in one determined flash

Everything's blue
in this world
the deepest shade of mushroom blue
all fuzzy
spilling out of my head"

Nine Inch Nails: "The Downward Spiral"

- - -

Harry heard the words before he saw Sirius' lips move,

"This is all your fault."

And then Sirius was falling, falling, his back arching into a curve as his body fell gracefully through the fluttering material. Harry was shouting, everyone was shouting but there was no sound coming from their mouths just deafening white noise all around him. They were staring at him now, blaming him, punishing him.

"This is all your fault." They screamed at him but their voices were growing weaker because they were falling too. Remus, Ron, Hermione, Dumbledore- all falling, all blaming.

Then there was darkness and only Harry but that was how he liked it- only him and a quiet trickling, the tip tap tip tap of a liquid hitting the floor. Whatever it was he sat on was cold and wet but it was getting warmer …softer.

Now there was a voice again. Sirius' voice. It floated from nowhere and everywhere at once.

"This is all your fault."

Harry wouldn't argue- it was his fault and now he was sliding down a wall he wasn't aware he was leaning against, in fact, he wasn't aware he had been standing. The room was growing white and soft and Harry blinked. Now it was orange and bright so Harry blinked again. Finally it was a small bedroom. His small bedroom.

Harry sat up slowly, groaning at how heavy his head felt atop his neck. He ran his hands through his black hair before rubbing at both temples. Every night for two weeks the dream had been the same, he was almost beginning to miss his visions. Almost.

He threw the covers off of himself and swung his feet onto the floor. He took his glasses from the nightstand, unfolding them carefully before sliding them onto his face. The carpet felt rough beneath his bare feet as he walked towards his door. He opened it slowly, not pulling it open fully lest the hinges squeak and wake up the Dursleys.

His bare feet padded softly on the plush carpet of the landing, the four-sizes-too-big pyjama bottoms trailing on the floor as they slid down over his thin hips. He slipped around the bathroom door; quietly clicking it closed as he flipped on the light.

Harry squinted against the shock of such a bright light, not moving towards the sink until his eyes had adjusted and stung less. A few moments later the initial pain subsided and Harry opened his eyes fully as he stepped towards the white porcelain sink. He curled his fingers around the edge of the basin, gripping until his knuckles were white and his wrists were supporting nearly all his body weight.

He raised his face slowly, the front of his hair flopping into his eyes. Cheeks hollow, eyes gaunt he looked like an ailing patient in a hopeless hospital ward. Harry ran his fingers through his hair, pulling it from his eyes only to have it fall back down again. He turned the tap, cold water running and splashing into the smooth, shiny sink.

Cupping his hands, Harry collected some water and splashed it onto his face. It ran in droplets down his forehead and cheeks, dripping off the end of his nose and forming little crystals on his dark eyelashes. He couldn't feel the cold. He couldn't feel a thing besides the dull throbbing behind his eyes that the dreams always left him with.

Pain. That was the only thing he could properly feel now- the throb of his head, the sting of a paper cut, the thwack of his uncle's fist …yes pain was good but he wasn't as accident prone as he used to be. No longer did he knock his hip on every table corner or turn around only to find himself striking a wall.

Harry spied his uncle's razor on a corner shelf, remembering the time he had heard Vernon complain about it nipping his skin and slicing a tiny piece off. Letting go of the sink, Harry reached out towards it, wrapping his fingers around the black plastic handle. He brought it to his forearm, pressing the metal into his pale skin.

It too was cold, not as cold as the sink but still enough to stimulate his nerves if only a little. He pressed a little harder, pressure building on the surface of his skin. He felt it pierce, only a little nick in the skin but he wondered. Wondered what it would feel like to sweep it, even just a little bit. Wondered how he would feel were he to draw his own blood and watch it pool before slipping down his arm.

Gryffindors are known for curiosity so Harry dragged the razor a little, ignoring the voice in his head that kept telling him 'Curiosity killed the cat …and lions are just big cats.'

When he pulled it away there were three perfectly parallel cuts, no blood, just lines defined by the raised bits of skin. It stung, but only for a moment. Harry looked at himself in the mirror, words-poetic- crossing into his mind. Never to be written, never to be spoken, only heard once and then forgotten.

I hurt myself today, to see if I still feel.

It didn't really hurt enough so Harry looked back to the cuts only to find them red. Blood red. Bleeding. He cocked his head, only looking mildly interested as to why there had been a delay in the flow. Oh well, it didn't matter now. He put the razor to where the cuts were, pressing again as he retraced the earlier slices. Harry pulled it again, pressing harder and going farther. It stung a little more this time.

I focus on the pain, the only thing that's real.

The blood showed itself a little quicker as Harry sat the razor back onto the white plastic of the corner shelf. He put his back to the bathroom wall and let his whole body slide slowly to the plush carpet of the floor. His green eyes watched with morbid fascination as one single drop of red freed itself from the immaculate lines and slid slightly over his skin.

It shone in the bright line of the bathroom. Twinkling. Taunting. Teasing. Telling him to taste. So Harry gave in. Lowering his head and lifting his arm, they met somewhere in the middle and Harry flicked out his tongue. Metal. That was the first thing Harry thought of. He had never liked the taste of metal but this …this he could learn to enjoy.

Harry let his head fall back against the wall as his eyes fluttered closed. Then came the flashes. Sirius laughing …Sirius and Remus telling him stories of the marauders …Sirius falling …Remus holding him back …the sudden emptiness …the bitter sting of guilt- all those things that he could not escape from.

The needle tears a hole, the old familiar sting. I try to kill it all but I remember everything.

He stood up, holding onto the sink as a head rush subsided. Turning around, Harry walked slowly to the door, clicked off the light and padded silently back to his bedroom. He closed his door silently behind himself and covered the short distance to where his bed was.

Pad pad pad
Harry heard the singsong voice in his head Pad pad with padded feet.

Harry ran his hands viciously through his hair and scratched down his face as he lay down on his bed. His arm rubbed over the mattress as he reached down to pull up his covers, the cuts stinging ever so slightly. He smiled to himself as he lay staring at the ceiling, insomnia invoked by fear of seeing those flashes once more taking him over. He could get used to that little sting, something that if only for a moment detached him from his memories. His smile faded as he saw Sirius in his head, a burning in the corner of his eyes leaving then returning as he blinked.

There was too much pressure on someone so young. He couldn't win a war no matter how much people believed he could.

Far too much pressure, enough to drive a person crazy.

"Yes," Harry whispered, "that much is probably true."

- - -

Notes: The poetic words in Harry's head as he cut are actually lyrics from 'Hurt' by Nine Inch Nails. In this fic that sort of thing will happen a lot, an ever growing soundtrack to Harry's ever growing insanity shall we say? Anyway …yes it was short for a chapter but it is more a prologue than anything else. Liked it? Want to slit it with a razor? Either way it would be nice to know.