Title: The Love Potion

Author: Sprinkles

Rating: PG-13 just to be sure…

Archive: Sure, just ask me first.

Disclaimer: I don't own Harry or Snape or anyone else from the Potter-verse. They either own themselves or belong to JKR

Summary: Harry comes to Snape and confesses to being in love with him. Snape in turn believes that Harry is under the influence of a love potion and attempts to identify and cure it.

Severus Snape, graduation dress robes billowing out behind him, strode through the dungeon and into his office where he firmly shut the door and as gracefully as possible, flopped into a chair.

Another year finished. Thank God.

Yet another group of naïve seventh years had been sent on their way into the real world - armed with their Hogwarts education - and maybe even a little Potions had penetrated their thick skulls.

Probably not, Snape thought as he poured himself a scotch. With the possible exception of Granger, he could not be certain that he knew of a single person with the intelligence to retain his seventh year N.E.W.T. curriculum for long.

Ah well. Snape raised his glass in a toast to the departing class. This is for you: Longbottom – I don't ever want to see you near a cauldron again; Weasley – For God's sake and my sanity: don't have any more children; Draco – Boy, the death of your father may be the best thing that's ever happened to you…He paused in his thinking for a moment.

And no more Harry bloody Potter.

Snape sat quietly as the complete reality of the situation hit him: No more constant reminders of that arrogant James Potter. No more of his late night wanderings and mischief making. No more of his rushing around into danger and then Snape having to save his thankless arse. No more of his press cuttings, belligerence, or sheer stupidity.

No. More. Harry. Potter.

He downed his glass. "Hallelujah, Amen!"

Knock. Knock. Knock.

Snape slammed his glass down in irritation.

My God, can't these people solve their own problems for once instead of coming to me?

He strode to the door and flung it open, a practiced "imposing glare" firmly fixed upon his face and directed at whoever had the audacity to disturb him during his annual after-graduation-rejoicing.

Harry Potter stood nervously at his office doorway. Age and Quidditch practice had made him more muscular had made him taller. Knowledge had made him more powerful and killing Voldemort had made him more mature. But he was standing in a way that reminded Snape strongly of the Harry Potter from almost eight years ago standing in the line waiting to be sorted.

Who else? Who else could possibly have the blatantly God-awful timing to appear when I am just rejoicing his departure?

Resisting the powerful urge to roll his eyes, he glared down at Harry. "Well?"

Harry hesitated for a long moment. "Professor, I – er – I came to ask you something."

Another long pause.

"Mr. Potter, I have neither time nor the wish to stand here and listen to the idiotic adolescent ramblings. Either say what you came to say or leave."

Harry took a deep breath and shuffled his feet. "I think I like you."

Snape looked at him blankly.

"I mean I like like you." Harry rushed on with the speed of the newest racing broom. "Beyond like – I mean, I like your hands and your face and your voice and sometimes what you say is mean and all that but I like listening to it anyway and I – I'd lovetospendsomemoretimewithyou.

Silence greeted the end of this jumble of the English language as Harry, as red as Ron's hair, cut himself off and Snape began to suffer the kind of headache normally reserved for dealings with Voldemort or dealings with Dumbledore.

Bloody Hell. When will these children learn?

Repressing his temper for the moment, he rubbed his temples. "Follow me, Mr. Potter." He turned on his heel and walked back inside his office.


Harry sat.

"Mr. Potter," Snape began, sitting down right across from Harry who was intently studying the coffee table. "Who put you up to this?"

Harry looked up sharply. "I'm sorry?"

"Do not insult my intelligence by pretending otherwise, Potter! I know very well that this is a prank instigated by your Gryffindor classmates in order to embarrass a much hated teacher – "

"I never – "

"Doubtless," Snape continued over him as if there had been no interruption. "You lot hoped to find me dead of a heart attack from shock or even, perhaps, grateful that the Boy Hero deems me worthy of his attention?"

"But this isn't a prank! Nobody knows I'm here! They're all at the Three Broomsticks and – "

Snape stood up cutting him off. "Then I suggest you remove yourself from my sight and go join them."

"Professor, you don't underst—"

"Oh, I think I understand perfectly, Mr. Potter."

"No!" The shouted word silenced them both. "No," Harry repeated more quietly this time. "Look, I like you." Harry held firmly to his resolve and looked Snape in the eye. "More than that. I love you. I have since sixth year. It isn't a prank and it isn't a spell and I'm not drunk either. It's the truth."

Snape studied him very closely and it seemed that Harry Potter had suddenly become an expert Occlumens because Snape couldn't tell for sure whether he was lying or not.

Sighing, Snape turned away. "What do you want from me, Potter?"

"A date," Came the prompt reply.

"A what?"

"A date. You know – going out for dinner and all that."

Snape gave him his most scornful over-the-shoulder glare. "Don't be ridiculous. Get out of my office."

"I won't leave until you give in. Give me a chance. Please. What can I do to convince you? What can I do to get you to go out with me?"

"For the love of –" Enraged, Snape whirled around and grabbed him by the arm. "Fine! You want dinner, you presumptuous brat?" – He dragged Harry to the door – "Scrub all my cauldrons for two months," He snapped in his most sarcastic voice as he shoved Harry out the door. "Then you can have your dinner!" And he slammed the door in Harry's face completely missing the muffled words that followed.

Stupid boy.

Massaging his temples, Severus Snape sat back down and tried to put the whole irritating incident out of his mind - but something was still bothering him. He thought back to Potter's little speech. Sincerity had rung clearly in every word. But Snape didn't believe for a second that Potter was actually in love with him.

So what was going on?

'It isn't a prank and it isn't a spell…'

Of course if Potter had been cursed or drugged he wouldn't be conscious of it. Imperio, perhaps? But who would go so far as to perform that curse except for Death Eaters? And what would they have to gain by doing something so asinine as making Potter think he was in love with Snape?

If not a Death Eater, then maybe a student? It would be characteristic of the Slytherins to slip Potter something as a final parting slap-in-the-face. And he could think of a few that could make a love potion. And there were several love potions of varying complexity that could be combined with increased effects.

A potion, then. Snape smirked as he poured himself a new drink. It would serve the little brat right to suffer potion-induced unrequited love. …But still, I suppose I have a responsibility to the wizarding public to save their ignorant hero, yet again. He paused for a moment considering that idea. And it might be an interesting challenge to find out who would drug the Boy Who Lived.

Much intrigued and much happier than he had been ten minutes ago, Snape stood up and retrieved every book about love potions and set to work.

A/N: Hope you enjoyed it! Part 2 coming soon! Please feed the author!