Disclaimer- I don't own Harry Potter.
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff
or sounding line. For self is a sea boundless and measureless.
I have found the truth
I have found a truth.
I have found the path of the Soul
I have met the Soul
walking upon my path
For the Soul walks upon all paths.
The Soul walks not upon a line,
neither does it grow like a reed.
The Soul unfolds itself,
like a lotus -Kahlil Gibran. The Prophet
of countless petals.
-Kahlil Gibran. The Prophet
He loved the small comfort it provided, the thrill of hiding in its depths. It gave him a brief moment of freedom in a life of chains.
In there, he could retreat from the world of shouts and pain.
The world of cruelty and cold.
At home, it was a potions store room, small and dank, and able to muffle the screams of his mother and the fury of his father.
At Hogwarts, it was the dungeons, cold and empty, to sweep him away from James Potter and the Marauders.
Yet neither the darkness of the dungeons or the potions store room could possibly protect him forever. Sooner or later, the darkness, must come to the light.
So it was that he found refuge in the darkness of the soul. In the dark hearts of those whom he counted as allies, never friends, he found others who appreciated the darkness within and without.
Their own darkness was one of greed and power, while his was the darkness of ambition, the endless seeker of knowledge.
For if one knows all, one cannot be hurt by anything.
They required his potion making skills. He required their connections, their power, to further his own knowledge.
And yet. And yet.
It was not enough.
No spells, no potions, no magic could compete with the dark spite in his heart as he saw James Potter standing in the light, surrounded by his friends and lackeys, while he, he remained in the darkness.
He wanted more. More knowledge. More power.
He needed, desperately so, to be untouchable.
Those around him could not understand. Could not comprehend why he sought out such knowledge.
Then, then they brought him before the Lord of Darkness himself.
The others recoiled before Him, for nothing was as terrible as He.
Yet he could not.
He was a creature of the dark, the Lord of it. Severus Snape was a child of it, a seeker of it.
The Dark Lord beckoned him closer with one long, almost bone like finger. "They tell me that you are a seeker of knowledge." The man's voice was like knives in the dark, cold and cutting.
He nodded, almost eagerly. "Yes, my Lord. I seek to know." His whisper was soft and pleading, as though he were praying.
"Why?" the Lord of Darkness' eyes glittered with flickering embers, as though the last remnants of the creature's humanity struggled to breathe. "What is it you seek?"
There was no lying, no second thoughts before the Dark Lord. "Power." Feeling weak, he admitted softly, "I do not wish to be harmed anymore." The voice was quiet, that of a child mewling, lost in the abyss.
But the Lord of Darkness did not see this as weakness. In fact, the man saw strength. "I too, am a seeker of knowledge." The Dark Lord acquiesced, smiling with demonic intent.
"Come with me, Severus, and I will show you the answers we all seek.." Lord Voldemort whispered, his voice the exquisite temptation of the dark.
And he could not resist.
The dark is no longer his friend, he muses. Now it is a thing of fear, a thing to be afraid of.
He does not know when he lost faith, lost love for his beloved darkness. But it has turned on him, spurned him from its embrace like a faithless lover.
There is no answers in the dark, he has come to know. Only questions and half-truths that come and go like daylight shadows.
Though there is nothing but darkness on his body, inside, some awful, terrible light has begun to shine. The expense of knowledge becomes bitter to his mouth, revolting to his eyes, repugnant to his nose.
He tastes nothing but ashes, breathes nothing but shadow.
Now he longs for that wondrous light, the air that so many breathed without a care, the tastes of simple things.
The world that was once so bitingly cold is now agonizingly warm.
Sometimes, when he walks among them, he wants to grasp their light, make it his own.
His own light is strangled, the depths of his damned soul rooted in darkness.
He lusted for the world, hungered for it.
And yet. And yet.
He could not touch it. Could do nothing but watch as it passed him by.
The only time he felt he could do anything to the world, for the world, was in the service of the Dark Lord.
To slaughter and maim and kill. To smell the acrid blood and feel the heat of the fire.
There, there he could feel.
Yet it was not the feeling he wished for. This was madness and bloodlust- he wanted warmth, he wanted to feel something beyond.
The depths of knowledge had both ascended and descended beyond his reach.
All he could do was stay stranded in the middle of the eternal divide.
This was not a life. This was a shadow's existence, dwelling somewhere between here and there- a lost soul.
But if this soul could have some use.
If he could not posses the world of light-
At least he could continue to watch it go by. To love it in his own way.
It was risky, nay, it was death coming to sit at his bedside and wait for his passing. To turn away from the dark he had loved so much to the light he now loved.
It was funny, he thought. He'd never pinned himself as a martyr, an altruist. That was best left for fools and clergy.
Yet here he was, at Albus Dumbledore's door. About to make the first step away from knowledge, from the dark.
Somehow, by delving into the darkness, Severus Snape had found the light.